View Full Version : R56 mods - best bang for buck?

31st July 2011, 03:26 PM
I'm looking for a few good bang for buck mods on my '07 Cooper S. Doesn't matter whether it's a performance or cosmetic mod. The car will mainly be used for street driving.

So far I have the M7 front strut brace in mind. I will also have to fix the dashboard rattle.

Any other suggestions?


31st July 2011, 03:44 PM
Sell it and buy an R53!!:scared::wink::p

31st July 2011, 03:54 PM
what scolburn said :P ^^^ alternatively, CAI, decat the downpipe resonator, Alta / Forge Intercooler and RMW tune, Coilovers.

31st July 2011, 03:55 PM
lol no way, I did consider an R53 at the start but I got this R56 for a bargain!

31st July 2011, 03:58 PM
thanks, I was thinking along the same lines of cold air intake and exhaust. I don't want coilovers for Sydney streets.

Can any muffler shop remove the cat or is it too illegal?

31st July 2011, 04:05 PM
AFAIK there's a downpipe to the turbo ?? and there's an additional cat in that, you can gut it and free up some ponies :) you still retain the factory Main cat. I much prefer the ride of my KW coilovers vs Stock sports suspension and i use it as a daily driver, its now got 100,000 k's on it :)

31st July 2011, 04:20 PM
heres the downpipe you need already done :) http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/OBX-NEW-EXHAUST-DOWN-PIPE-07-09-Mini-Cooper-S-1-6L-R56-_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQhashZitem2a1058cedcQQitemZ18066 2882012QQptZRaceQ5fCarQ5fParts#ht_2286wt_939

31st July 2011, 05:17 PM
Yep I second the exhaust and CAI. :) Definitely should be up there on the to do list for any new modder.

Coilovers are fantastic as well. If you get good ones they improve handling but you can still manage to keep the height if you want. Coilovers don't necessarily mean that you will be low. :)

31st July 2011, 05:29 PM
thanks, will consider coilovers later down the track

never really played with exhaust systems... so you need to buy a new downpipe? or can the old one be "gutted"?

31st July 2011, 08:03 PM

RMW tune is the best bang for buck by far IMHO. With the current exchange rate it would be around $750, and makes a huge difference for street driving.


31st July 2011, 11:12 PM
I had a look through the rmw forums, seems to be some sort of highly regarded ecu tune... I had no idea it could make such a difference. If I plan on modding the exhaust and intake later on would this affect the rmw tune or does it make no difference?

Can someone local (eg. Peak performance) do a similar tune or is Jan's tune one of a kind?

31st July 2011, 11:20 PM
An RMW tune is one of the best things you could probably do. I have not tuned my car through him but some time next year my car will get his magic touch. ;)

Jan (guy who operates RMW) tunes YOUR car. He does not just flash a generic code into your ecu and call it a day. :) From what I have read its good to get your car set up with the physical mods first (eg intake / exhaust) then do the RMW tune. What typically happens is you put your car on a dyno here, run it and send him the outputs. He emails you back the adjusted software. (If anyone has done this first hand please chime in, I am going off what I have read, not personal experience) Also if I am not mistaken he has 'cracked' the specific ECU in the R56 to gain full access I believe, something that other generic companies have not done. His is a "one of a kind" tune. :D

31st July 2011, 11:45 PM
It is best to speak to Jan/RMW, he has all the patience in the world and gives you the best advice according to what you want to achieve with your car. He will advise you to do all your engine mods first and then do the tune. But he can adjust the tune if you add anything more. My personnel experience with him is excellent and I will never deal with anyone else. In regards to the tuning process, 07BPB is pretty much right for the R50/53. Not too sure if it is the same for the R56 but i think it is. He prefers to tune on a dynapac dyno as it gives more accurate results. He pulled 30+whp out of mine and the process took about 3hours. Probably wouldn't take as long either if I had a better Internet connection that didn't keep dropping out!! Apart from that it is quite easy, bolt the car up and make sure the car is cooled down. Do a run and send the graph to him. He makes adjustments and you upload the modified file back into the car. Just keep doing that until he is done.

1st August 2011, 07:22 AM

The R56 is much much easier to tune for Jan (RMW) with more predictable results and less variability than the R53. As a result there is less need to do dyno tuning or live dyno tuning.

Plenty of people have got very impressive results without going near a dyno. You contact Jan, explain what you want. He sends you a "Dimsport" unit that plugs into the OBD port of your car. You download your ECU which takes around 5 minutes. You then email this to Jan. He emails you back a tune, and you upload this to the car, which again takes around 5 minutes.


If you want to return to stock for whatever reason you repeat the process.

If you want you can then dyno the car, send him the plot, and he can fine tune things. However, most people get excellent results on the R56 straight out of the box.

There is also the "Alta Access Port" (Cobb) tuning unit, which uses a similar principle, with several other advantages. Both Jan and Alta use this, but unfortunately it is not compatible with euro spec cars (like ours).

You should have a read of the modifications thread on northamericanmotoring.com (nam).

There are some potential downsides to the tunes. You are increasing the boost level. Some people have had issues with limp modes. There are also a few people who have had engine problems etc. Read through the nam threads to get a heads up.


1st August 2011, 12:03 PM
thanks, will consider coilovers later down the track

never really played with exhaust systems... so you need to buy a new downpipe? or can the old one be "gutted"? AFAIK the ond one can be gutted but its a pain, just the one i linked is pre done so its basically bolt bolt bolt done.

The RMW is the BEST bang for buck but id still recommend the intake just for noise purposes ^_^

1st August 2011, 03:13 PM
Yeah RMW for sure! A cat back exhaust won't add much power. You are better off getting the DP with a high flow cat or cat less, which will give more power and also change the sound. But I would go do the RMW tune ASAP, then if you do get an exhaust or intercooler just let Jan know and he will email you an updated tune.

2nd August 2011, 02:12 AM
hi axelfoley

I highly recommend a rmw tune. With the exchange rate now I would really take advantage of it.

I have a stock car MCS 07 with just his tune.. and its :thumbup:

21st August 2011, 10:43 PM
thanks guys, this RMW guy doesn't seem to wanna get back to me so will have to stick to physical mods for now

21st August 2011, 10:54 PM
Whilst we are on the subject of ECU tuning, can any locals such as Peak Performance do a similar tune to that of RMW?

If not, are there any aftermarket electronic boost controllers available for the mini which will allow you to play with boost levels and adjust air/fuel mixtures, etc...? There was quite an abundance of these for my old turbo Japanese import.

21st August 2011, 10:59 PM
RMW is the master of tuning these cars. From what I have read, if it were me I would only let him touch my car. :)