As you’ve likely seen by now, our Accesstuner software has undergone some changes to better align with our company’s mission and devotion to our Green Speed initiative. While we understand the rollout of these changes has caused some confusion and frustration, we hope to prove to our customers that these changes have been made out of the interest of being able to continue doing what we love – making our cars “ours”.
Below is a list of the most common questions we have been asked over the past week along with some insight into what this means for the future of the Accessport and our tuning software.
Q: Why did we sell product so close to the point of the announcement?
A: We appreciate your concern and would like to apologize for any issues that these changes have created for you. The time between us removing our flex fuel components and kits from our website (March 18th) and making the change to our custom tuning software Accesstuner eliminating the ability to create custom tuning files for our legacy flex fuel kit was 31 days. In hindsight, we understand that the time period between discontinuing our flex fuel hardware and the change in custom tuning software ending tuning support could or should have been longer. It was never our intention to leave anyone stuck in the middle of a project. We have and continue to work with those of you who purchased flex fuel products but had not started the installation process (please see our FAQ – Am I Able to return my Flex Fuel kit question below). We have also tried to appropriately support customers who were in the middle of a build with their Protuner when these changes occurred. While we thought that 31 days was a reasonable time period for this change, we recognize that a longer cycle time would have been better.
Q: Why did we give no heads up and roll out these changes “cold turkey”?
A: We definitely understand the concern and frustration expressed by some of our customers of having to adapt to such abrupt changes. Based on our observation of regulatory trends in our industry over the past several years, guidance we’ve received from industry partners such as SEMA Garage, multiple presentations made by the EPA at the SEMA Show, carefully reviewing public settlement documents between the EPA and multiple tuning companies, and other discussions that we have had with industry partners and regulators, it is our belief that government regulators are increasingly targeting enforcement actions against manufacturers, distributors, shops, and even individuals for vehicle/engine modifications that could be seen as not being compliant with emissions regulations. We believe that the changes we made to our Accesstuner custom tuning software eliminates the potential of tunes created with our updated software being viewed as delete tunes.
While we would have liked to have provided a heads-up to the timing of the changes we made to our custom tuning software, we didn’t believe that given the current regulatory environment that such advance communications would have been prudent. We in no way wanted or intended to negatively impact our community in any way. We made these changes to ensure that we have a bright future together. We decided that making these changes to our custom tuning software “cold turkey” was in everyone’s best long term interest (even though we recognize that adapting to rapid change is challenging in the short term). The goal of this change was to reduce/eliminate any negative focus from emissions regulatory agencies and to limit any potential issues or exposure for our customers.
Our view was and is that we had to “rip off the band aide”, and that continuing to support software that could be used to create tunes that could be viewed as delete tunes was detrimental to our and our communities long term interest. Again, we apologize for any issues that this immediate change may have created and hope that you can understand our decision process for the immediate update to the Accesstuner custom tuning software.
Original Questions 4/22:
Q: Can I still use my Accessport and tune my car?
A: Yes! Your Accessport can still be used to tune your car just like you always have. Your Accessport still has the same functionality it had prior to the change that was made to our Accesstuner custom tuning software. The change that we made to the Accesstuner custom tuning software does not change in any way the functionality of your Accessport or your ability to use it to tune your car.
Q: If I update my Accessport will I lose any Maps?
A: Nope! This update only made changes to our Accesstuner custom tuning software and has no effect on your Accessport, its functionality, or your stored maps.
Q: Can I still get a custom tune from my Protuner or have my current tune altered?
A: Custom tuning is still available. You can also still have an existing custom tune altered. However, if an existing tune included any of the features that we have identified as potentially negatively impacting your vehicle’s emissions system (Ex: Subaru analog Flex Fuel, or GT-R Speed Density tuning), those features will no longer be present or available in the new software. Additionally, if an existing tune adjusted any emissions related DTCs, these adjustments will no longer be available in the new software.
NOTE – Although analog Flex Fuel is not currently supported, your tuner can still create maps that work with varying amounts/concentrations (E-85 or E-60, etc.) of ethanol. Instead of it automatically adjusting to different ethanol concentrations, you would need to switch between different maps based on the blend of your fuel. We plan to release a CARB compliant Flex Fuel system that automatically adjusts to varying ethanol content in the future.
Q: Can I still download Maps from the COBB website and use Accessport Manager to add them to my Accessport?
A: Yes! The same maps that were available on the website before this announcement are still there and they are all CARB compliant. Accessport manager continues to function just the same as it did prior to the change to our Accesstuner custom tuning software.
Q: Will my car run differently now?
A: No, the changes that were made to the Accesstuner software will have no impact on how your car runs or the functionality of your Accessport. Your car will continue to run and function just like it did before this Accesstuner software change was made.
Q: Why is Flex Fuel no longer available and supported on the Subaru platform?
A: We have determined that we could not get CARB EO certification for our current analog flex fuel product. While our old system maintained the overall functionality of your vehicles emissions system, in order for it to work we had to make adjustments to certain emissions related sensor signals (TGV’s). Because of our commitment to our Green Speed Initiative and our plan to have our entire product range covered by CARB EO’s, we made the decision to discontinue this feature while we work on a new and improved system that offers all of the functionality of our old system in a CARB EO certified package.
Q: Am I able to return my Flex Fuel kit?
A: Yes – We have a process in place to help those of you who may still have new, uninstalled hardware kits. Reach out to our customer service team or the COBB Authorized Dealer you purchased your flex fuel kit from to inquire how to return your kit. If you have installed Flex Fuel hardware and are within our 12-month warranty period, please contact our Customer Service team.
Q: I’m not in California, what does this update have to do with me?
Q: I’m in California, are there restrictions on what I can and can’t use or purchase?
A: Yes. We have received nearly 90 CARB Executive Orders and our website now displays which products are covered by one of those EOs. Those products are able to be shipped/used in the state of California. The list of parts covered by EOs will continue to grow until we reach 100% coverage of our product catalog.
Q: I paid for Accesstuner training with EFI, is Accesstuner gone?
A: No, you still have access to your Accesstuner software. We have not disabled Accesstuner for existing end-users who had already gone through the training and received approved access to our Accesstuner software. The training that you paid for through EFI University is valuable because it helped you establish a knowledge base for how to responsibly tune your car. At the moment, we have paused new user requests for end-user training and Accesstuner software access.
Q: Is Speed Density still available on the Subaru platform?
A: Yes! It was removed from the GTR platform due to concerns regarding its implementation, but this did not impact the Subaru platform.
Q: Is this a difficult and inconvenient change to the Accesstuner software what we need to get familiar with to ensure that we will be able to keep tuning in the future?
A: Yes. We have made the change to our Accesstuner software suite (and all of the other changes that we have made) to position the COBB community for the future and for growth. These changes ensure that together we can keep tuning and customizing our cars while protecting our environment.