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How to: Tuning The 2015+ Mustang S550

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With the amount of electronics in newer cars, a tuner can go far in unleashing the potential of your Mustang. Tuners also allow you to make the most out of other mods like intakes and exhaust systems.

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With today’s modern wizardry of electronic components, modifying your Mustang can be as simple as connecting it to a computer, selecting a few options, mashing a few buttons, and voila – you have a whole new animal under your foot. The 2015 Mustang GT and EcoBoost are especially vulnerable to this type of tuning.

American Muscle

Tuning Your Mustang

Tuning your Mustang consists of connecting a secondary computer to your Mustang (via the OBDII port), and having the secondary computer re-program the vehicle. Tuners can be self-contained devices (like an SCT or Superchip hand-held unit) or, like the pros in the movies use, a laptop. For the general public, it's easier (and safer!) to use one of the standalone units. These standalone units often come with pre-made tunes, or it's possible to load them with a custom, application specific tune and then transfer this over to the Mustang.

Mustang BAMA Performance SCT Tuner

EcoBoost Tuning

Turbo cars are phenomenal when it comes to tuning. With proper, documented changes to the stock programming, you can add massive amounts of power without touching a bolt on the engine. Things you can expect when you tune your EcoBoost:

  • Increased horsepower and torque: gaining an additional 40 horsepower and 40 ft-lbs of torque across the powerband is considered elementary
  • Boost control: increase, decrease, or limit turbo boost. Furthermore, if you get a digital controller (some tuners come equipped as such), you can control boost on the fly without have to turn the car off
  • Throttle response: the new EcoBoost Mustang uses a fly-by-wire throttle assembly. The motion of pressing down on the pedal is converted to a digital signal, sent to the ECU, which then opens the throttle accordingly. Remapping the throttle table will increase pedal sensitivity and response times
  • Speed limiter: remove the stock speed limiter
  • Transmission control: for automatic ‘Stangs it's possible to revise the factory shift points and overall shift firmness to get the trans to shift to your preference
2015 EcoBoost Mustang on a Lift

Coyote GT Tuning

Whilst not quite the prodigy of tuning that the EcoBoost is, the 2015 5.0L GT can still benefit from updated ECU programming. Options to expect:

  • Increased horsepower and torque: by adjusting the timing and fuel curves (more advanced, more aggressive), a tuner can unlock another 25 horsepower and 25 ft-lbs of torque at higher RPM’s
  • Throttle response: exactly like the EcoBoost, the GT utilizes a fly-by-wire throttle system. As a safety precaution, factory tuning desensitizes the pedal more than it needs to be, slowing the response time between foot and engine
  • Air intake control: the new Mustangs are surprisingly fussy when it comes to aftermarket air intakes. If an aftermarket air intake has been installed and the ECU's not adjusted for this, it's very possible the car may illuminate the ‘check engine’ light
  • Rear end gear calibration: changing the rear end gears has been a staple of Mustang modification for decades. A tuner will be able to calibrate the speedometer for the new set of gears – no speedo gear changes are necessary
  • Transmission control: if you find the factory shift points and feeling are just too mushy, they can be re-programmed exactly to your liking. Bone-jarring hard or silky smooth – however you prefer

Furthermore, all of these handheld tuners double as code readers. If there is ever a problem with your Mustang and it throws a code, you can check with the tuner. On top of this many handheld units offer live sensor monitoring and datalogging, allowing you to get a real good look at what is going on.

2015 Mustang GT Built by the BAMA Performance Team

2015+ Mustang Tuner Comparisons

SCT Pre-Loaded X4

  • $399
  • 10-12HP/10-12 TQ gain
  • No free tunes for life
  • 3 tunes (87, 91, 93 octanes)
  • Pre-loaded "canned" tunes
  • Stock, wheels & tires, cold air intake
  • On-device monitoring only
  • Ships same day with pre-loaded tunes

Bama X4

  • $399
  • 17 RWHP/ 18 RWTQ peak; 30 RWHP/ 33 TQ curve
  • Free tunes for life
  • No tunes for superchargers or forced induction
  • 2 tunes: Performance V2 and Race V2 (87, 91, 93 E85 or unleaded race fuel)
  • Stock, wheels & tires and cold air intake
  • E85
  • Nitrous
  • Offers more power and reliability than the Pre-loaded Tuners
  • Lifetime datalogs
  • Ships 2 days after completing tune info form
  • Ready to use out of the box

VMP X4 (Mostly STock or Bolt-ons)

  • $499
  • 19 RWHP/ 20 RWTQ peak; 32 RWHP/ 35 TQ curve
  • Free revisions
  • Bolt-ons are considered cold air intake, exhaust, injectors, E85, nitrous, etc
  • 3 tunes (87, 91, & 93 octanes)
  • Suggested for heavily modified Mustangs
  • X4 ships same day but BLANK without tunes loaded
  • VMP emails tunes 4-5 days after completing the form

VMP X4 (w/ Nitrous, E85, or Mild Mods)

  • $549
  • HP and TQ varies per build
  • Free revisions
  • Mild mods are considered injectors, mass air flow meters, nitrous, etc
  • 3 tunes (87, 91, and 93 octanes OR E85 OR race fuel)
  • Suggested for Mustangs with intake manifold swaps, E85, or nitrous
  • Slight improvement in power and driveability over the Bama tuner for similar mods
  • X4 ships same day but BLANK without tunes loaded
  • VMP emails tunes 4-5 days after completing the form

VMP X4 (w/ Superchargers/Forced Induction or Heavy Mods)

  • $699
  • HP and TQ gains vary based on builds
  • Free revisions
  • Heavy mods are considered camshafts, cylinder heads, etc
  • 1 tune (91, 93, race fuel, or E85)
  • Suggested for any aftermarket forced induction
  • X4 ships same day but BLANK without tunes loaded
  • VMP emails tunes 4-5 days after completing the form

VIDEO: How to Mount an n-Gauge Tuner in Your S550 Mustang

Fitment includes: 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, GT, V6, EcoBoost, ShelbyGT350