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'08 Outback XT Ltd 5EAT; WRX; Legacy L
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Discussion Starter #1
I was wondering if anyone with an XT like mine has the COBB AccessECU tuning at Stage 1 (reprogramming only) and can share some experience. Looking at the dyno charts on the COBB website, it seems that gains are minimal, but a COBB employee maintains that one can clearly feel the gains. I hope someone can share their personal experience about it.
Kamen
 

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15 Crosstrek
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67 Posts
I have had WRXs, FXTs and STIs. All of which I did at least Stg 1 Accessport.

There is a clear and measurable gain from the tune. Where you'll notice it the most (granted I have never yet had a OBXT) is off the line.

The throttle response is enhanced, boost is stabilized and fuel efficiency is increased.

Just my $0.02...
 

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'06 OBXT 5EAT 1.5" lift, stage 1 tune
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49 Posts
Most people around here seem to do the Stage 1 tune through RomRaider. I've been using MickyD's stage 1 map from the RomRaider forums and it's an easily noticeable difference and I even get slightly better mileage (though not substantially). The general consensus is that it's a good bit more aggressive than the COBB Stage 1 tune, and the cost is much less as well.

Here's a walk-though and discussion The COMPLETE beginner's guide to e-tuning (with a vendor and VAG-COM cable) - Subaru Legacy Forums

Being that yours is an '08 though I believe you need the name-brand cable rather than the $15 one off Amazon.
 

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'08 Outback XT Ltd 5EAT; WRX; Legacy L
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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you for the responses.

I do have a WRX with Stage 1, but the EJ205 shows huge gains on Cobb's dyno charts and it is to be expected; similar for later WRX and other Subaru engines. I am particularly interested in the '07-'09 OB XT with the automatic transmission.

I am familiar with RomRaider, but I'd rather not venture into something that has too many variables and unknowns. I'd rather go with a professional, tried-and-true solution.

I appreciate the input, but all I really want to know is specific experiences (dyno, instrumented runs, or a trustworthy seat-of-the-pants) with this specific car. If it's at altitude, even better (I'm at 5000ft).

Kamen
 

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'08 Outback XT Ltd 5EAT; WRX; Legacy L
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Discussion Starter #6
Some data

Thank you, Brandon, but, I'm afraid, your 2005 experiences a different effect with the AECU programming than my 2008. This shows the Stage 1 gains for your car (14%HP / 13%TQ), while this shows the ones for my car (4%HP / 9%TQ). You can also see on the dyno charts how for 2005 (whose engine is rated 250hp/250lb-ft) the Stage 1 (green) line goes quite a bit up, while for the 2008 (243hp/241 lb-ft) it is barely above the stock (blue) line. That is why I'm trying to get feedback from an actual 2007-'09 owner. It seems like Subaru did some emissions modifications (e.g., air pump) to the engine that limited its max power and tunability (in stock form).
Kamen
 

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Lawn ornament XT
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I seem to recall that the SAE revised their HP and torque certification formulas between the 05 and 06 model years, but not all manufacturers started using the new system right away. I'm not sure when Subaru changed. So make sure you are comparing things correctly.
 

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'08 Outback XT Ltd 5EAT; WRX; Legacy L
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Discussion Starter #8
I seem to recall that the SAE revised their HP and torque certification formulas between the 05 and 06 model years, but not all manufacturers started using the new system right away. I'm not sure when Subaru changed. So make sure you are comparing things correctly.
I realize that, but the numbers are different because the engines are different (albeit slightly, torque is less than power), but what really matters is the relative gains, which are much lesser on the '07-'09 models than on the '05-'06 models. The question is, how does that translate into objective and subjective performance gains for Stage 1.

Kamen
 

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'08 Outback XT Ltd 5EAT; WRX; Legacy L
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Discussion Starter #9
So, no one here has an '07, '08 or '09 Outback XT with COBB AECU Stage 1?
Kamen
 

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'08 Outback XT Ltd 5EAT; WRX; Legacy L
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Discussion Starter #10
Update: final verdict

I don't come her every often (lack of free time), so this could have come a lot sooner, but it's better late than never.

I finally got the v.2 Accessport about a year ago and have some fairly objective results to report. I say "fairly" because I have not done formal instrumented tests, the reason being that the Outback is not a performance machine and the simplest launch required to get, say, 0-60mph times is too much of a hazard (on a 70K-mile car, with the auto transmission). But I have plenty of seat-of-the-pants feedback to report, and the verdict is that on a 2008 XT with the 5EAT the addition of the AP is not worth it. You can barely feel the difference and the minimal gains are completely negated in the majority of cases by the slow shifting box and the power-sapping torque converter. If you have a 5MT, that might be a different story, but it would be nothing like on most other Subaru engines, like on my EJ205 WRX.

I should also mention that soon after the installation of the AP, the engine suffered a catastrophic failure (bad maintenance from previous owners, see http://legacygt.com/forums/showthread.php/interpreting-results-engine-oil-analysis-198376.html). So, my impressions are from a practically new engine (well broken-in by now).

If there is any interest, I could elaborate.

Kamen
 

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Lawn ornament XT
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Thanks for sharing those results!

We've got a tuner visiting this forum regularly now, he does remote tunes across the internet. He's been offering very specific 5EAT tuning in addition to GT/XT tunes.

My summer work & travel plans are the only reason I haven't already done it for my own car, very much looking forward to it though.

Look up threads from west_minist for more info.
 

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2007 Outback XT
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I have an 07 XT with COBB Stage 1, there is definitely a noticeable performance difference. Go into Sport # mode and it is very fast off the line, throttle response is much better than stock.
 

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'08 Outback XT Ltd 5EAT; WRX; Legacy L
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Discussion Starter #13
I'm very aware of the SI Drive feature. The difference between and [S#] is significant; however, the stock/Stage 1 difference is minimal in either throttle mapping mode. If there is enough doubt, I could make instrumented tests; I'd just hate to put the extra wear on the transmission in the process.
Kamen

I have an 07 XT with COBB Stage 1, there is definitely a noticeable performance difference. Go into Sport # mode and it is very fast off the line, throttle response is much better than stock.
 
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