ECU Cloning – Everything You Need To Know – Erakina

What are ECU cloning?

  • ECU is the abbreviation for Electronic Control Unit.
  • They are a system that is inbuilt into cars and they control their systems or subsystems.
  • This applies to motor vehicles other than cars as well.

An interior of an ECU unit

 Detailed interior of an ECU unit

  • It must be noted that  ECUs function as an ensemble of many units and are thus referred to as the car’s computer.
  • ECU’s ensemble consists of units like ECM (engine control module), PCM (powertrain control module), TCM ( transmission control module), BCM (brake control module), etc. 
  • Many of these independent units also function depending on each other.


ECU cloning

What is  ECU cloning?

  • By definition, cloning is the process of duplicating the existing data of the module in a replacement module.
  • This access channel is opened with the help of, what is commonly known as, the vehicle identification number (VIN) which allows the old module to be replaced by the new one.
  • So, ECU cloning is basically when a car experiences issues with its motor like shut down or rough starts and its ECU requires repair. Now, while ECU repairs are usually quite rapid and general processes, the damaged models of ECM, PCM, TCM, BCM, etc.[ECU cloning] require their cloning for a full-proof repair.

Where Can I Find ECU cloning?

Locating/Finding your ECU is really dependant on the cars make and model. This information can be found relitivley easy on the internet. We have compiled a list of all the common makes of veichle in the UK and put the locations of the cars ECU.[ECU cloning] This will get updated regulary.

  • AUDI

On most models the ECU is located beneath the wipers behind the plastic trim. Audi R8 has 2x ECU’s located in the rear engine bay


Continental GT Under Plastic Panel at N/S/R of engine bay x 2 ECUs

  • BMW

Generally is located Under Bonnet behind panel at rear of fuse box In plastic box next to battery


Citroen AX, CS, SAXO, XANTIA, XSARA, ZX Under Bonnet in engine bay

  •  FIAT

Fiat COUPE DUCATTO, MAREA, MULTIPLA, PUNTO Inside car, passenger front foot well Under Bonnet in engine bay

  • FORD

Ford ESCORT, FOCUS FIESTA GALAXY MONDEO PROBE SIERRA, TRANSIT Under plastic side trim in drivers side front foot well Under glove box on passenger side Next to battery Inside car, above pedals Inside car, behind centre console Inside vehicle, behind glove box New Ford Diesel Models – N/S/F Wheel Arch inside plastic box


Honda CIVIC, PRELUDE Passenger front foot well under carpet or above glove compartment


Hyundai COUPE Passenger front footwall under carpet


Isuzu TROOPER Inside Vehicle on passenger side


In plastic box next to battery Inside Vehicle under driver’s seat. In plastic box next to battery In plastic box next to battery Range rover Sport are Behind battery N/S/R of engine bay

  •  MAZDA

Mazda 6 and most other models are Underneath carpet in passenger side foot well. RX8 Inside plastic box O/S/F Of engine bay


Nissan S13 / 300zx Inside car, behind centre console Passenger front foot well under carpet Navara pre 2005 are Behind centre console Navara 2005> are O/S/R Of engine bay X-Trial  Above Glove Compartment, 350z, 370z under bonnet


Peugeot 106, 206, 306, 307, 405 & 406 205,309 Under Bonnet in engine bay or Inside car over steering column


Rover 200, 25D, 45D, 75D Under bonnet on passenger’s side


Renault 19, MEGANE, ESPACE CLIO, TRAFFIC 21 TURBO Under bonnet on drivers side Under bonnet Under bonnet near battery

  • SEAT

On most models the ECU is located beneath the wipers behind the plastic trim.


Suzuki SWIFT, BALENO, VITARA Inside car above pedals or behind glove box

When is ECU cloning required?

  • The ECU component is essentially a pre-programmed computer chip for modern cars, very much similar to the ones we see in various laptops today.[ECU cloning] So, they spearhead the tasks of all the subunits under them and are thus prone to damage, owing to their requirement of expert handling.
  • ECUs are prone to hydro damages i.e. damage from leakage of water built up around the system of the car. These damages can turn very expensive.
  • They are also prone to crash damages i.e. due to their location in the wheel arches or the front or the side of the car engine, they become easy damage targets in case of a car crash.
  • ECU cloning requirement also arises in case of electrical surges and poor workmanship around car engines.

Inverter Motor ECU Inverter Motor ECU Measurement and Calibration

Why must cloning be preferred?

  •  Most automobile dealerships are often only capable of programming new electronic modules as a response to repairs.
  • This rebuilding involves a lot of brainstorming and man work, while all of it can be avoided by simply reprogramming the already used unit.[ECU cloning]
  • The reprogramming process involves cloning the required model on a replaced model for the easy and safe transfer of all the data from the affected system.
  • In the case of programming a new module altogether, it is extremely cost-intensive.
  • Too cost-intensive for a task that is machine-oriented and hence, bound to arise again at some point.

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External liks

Read more about ECU Cloning

By Daya Atreya

Date: 24/12/2021

Tags: circuit boards

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