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Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Tuner Review / Teardown

Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Tuner Product Review and Teardown


Before reading further, if you have not already seen the tests by quarkslab on reverse engineering the Nitro OBD2 performance chip scam, check it out here:

We point you in this direction because this NitroOBD scam from China has been flooding the internet for a few years now, and has given birth to NUMEROUS copies with varying colors and logos. Once unscrupulous sellers discovered they could sell these light blinkers as ‘tuners’ at a high price, the market has been overwhelmed with them. We provide our analysis below of the Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Tuner and reveal what is inside this product. To accurately understand the big picture you should first read the above quarkslab article in its entirety. It has been proven based on several different articles and tests that the Nitro OBD module is a verified scam. Don’t just take our word for it!

There are also several youtube videos proving the details of the Nitro-OBD light flasher scam and some of it’s variants:


Reverse Engineering the Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Tuner OBD Performance Chip
Tags: CAN OBD Performance Chip Vehicle Tuning Scams Analysis Reverse Engineering Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Tuner Scam


This article involves reverse engineering and analyzing the “Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Tuner” in order to identify if it truly works as advertised or not.

The Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip sports a glossy black sleek design and looks nice aesthetically but are there similar looking products we have reviewed before? Unfortunately, yes. The company, Thorton Chip Tuning, claims to be “a team of automotive enthusiasts based on Columbus, GA. Founded in 2008 our mission is to work with high performance vehicles in any way we can.”:


Thorton Chip Tuning About Us Page
Thorton Chip Tuning About Us Page



A closer look at that photo of the ‘shop’ on their about us page does not give us any more confidence about this company being in the ‘tuning’ business – it actually appears these workers are all working on axles, gearboxes and tires – no noticeable tasks are shown related to ‘vehicle tuning’:


Thorton Chip Tuning About Us Shop Photo
Thorton Chip Tuning About Us Shop Photo



This is the Thorton Tuning Chip product as shown on the company’s website,


Thorton Chip Tuning Website Top Speed OBDII Cat Product Photo
Thorton Chip Tuning Website Top Speed OBDII Cat Product Photo


Spiffy looking advertisement don’t you agree? Well as we have seen before, looks can be deceiving! Looks can also show valuable hints hidden in plain sight. Without going ANY further, do you notice anything in the screen grab above? If not, look below for the comparison:






SuperOBD Box and Install Instructions vs Thorton Performance Chip Top Speed OBDII CAT
SuperOBD Box and Install Instructions vs Thorton Performance Chip Top Speed OBDII CAT


Not only does the box itself look verrrry similar to the previous SuperOBD scam chip, the instructions on the bottom of the box are also almost identical, with a few small changes. The box is the same size, the cover is the same size, the instructions are almost the same. What about the chip itself?


Comparison of Super OBD Scam Chip vs Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat
Comparison of Super OBD Scam Chip vs Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat


Yep, the box is the same size and shape, just a different logo and color, but the Thorton chip is also IDENTICAL to the previously reviewed SUPER OBD2 / Nitro OBD Chip scam. The lights, button and outer design are all the same – just the wording and color have been changed.

What does Thorton claim about this ‘chip’? Plenty! Here are some screen grabs of their claims:



Thorton Chiptuning Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Website Claims 1
Thorton Chiptuning Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Website Claims 1


So far these claims are somewhat normal as compared to other similar products around the web: “After driving about 125 total road miles, our tuning chip will adjust itself to your vehicle’s engine, your driving habits and continues to remap the ECU for optimal performance and fuel consumption as you continue to drive.”


Thorton Chiptuning Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Website Claims 2
Thorton Chiptuning Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Website Claims 2


They say they are “U.S. sellers”. That may be, but we already know where this product was manufactured, and it was not in the USA!



Thorton Chiptuning Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Website Claims 3
Thorton Chiptuning Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Website Claims 3


Here we start to run into a bit of a problem. Most scam products we have seen follow this same rule – they claim to be ‘universal’ and capable of being used on any vehicle known to man. It seems they are eluding to this here as well: “The Thorton Performance Chip will fit all engine sizes and types for your make of vehicle.”. This leads one to believe the product will work on any variant of a specific vehicle make, such as all Toyota, or all Ford, etc. However, they continue: “Be sure to select the correct Make, Model and engine of your vehicle when purchasing.”. Which is it? IF it is a custom programmed chip, then why say it will work on all variants of one vehicle model? If it is a universal chip, why do they need the specific engine type when ordering? Seems a little fishy, but as we have seen numerous times before, what you see it not always what you get.


Thorton Chiptuning Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Website Claims 4
Thorton Chiptuning Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Website Claims 4


Now we can really see something is seriously wrong. 40HP gains from an OBD plug in ‘chip’ which looks exactly like several previously reviewed scam modules? Um, yeah – and we have a bridge to sell you also!




The Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip on the website comes in three levels and prices:


Thorton Chiptuning Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Levels and Prices
Thorton Chiptuning Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Levels and Prices


Levels depend on the ‘power’ of the chip you select, which, interestingly enough, all look THE SAME! The ‘Level 1; chip is $29.95, the ‘Level 2’ chip is $59.95 and the ‘Level 3’ chip is $89.95. Another interesting observation from the above screen grab – notice the dial logos which show the different chip ‘levels’? We noticed they bear an uncanny similarity to those of a previously reviewed chip scam – the Chipyourcar Thunderbolt chip:


Chipyourcar Scam Chip Levels vs Thorton Chip Levels Comparison
Chipyourcar Scam Chip Levels vs Thorton Chip Levels Comparison


As you can see, the dial designs are SLIGHTLY different in color and shape, BUT the MPG values are THE SAME – the supposed horsepower values are THE SAME. What are the chances they would be exactly the same? Either Thorton is a new scam by the same people who brought us Chip Your Car, or they are excellent copycats! The hints we have uncovered up until now lead us believe this product is similar in it’s origin to many we have previously analyzed. What is actually inside the Thorton Top Speed OBD CAT Performance Chip?





We ordered a Thorton Top Speed OBDII CAT Performance Chip and disassembled the outer plastic shell. Immediately upon opening the case, we saw what we thought was an all-too-familiar design from our previously reviewed scam modules:


Thorton Performance Chip Top Speed OBDII Cat Outside View
Thorton Performance Chip Top Speed OBDII Cat Outside View


Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Disassembled Inside View
Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Disassembled Inside View


A closer comparison of the two modules confirms our assumption that the board is yet another NitroOBD clone with parts rearranged and LED colors changed:


SUPERobd NitroOBS Scam Chip Circuit Board vs Thorton Top Speed OBDII CAT Performance Chip Comparison
SUPERobd NitroOBS Scam Chip Circuit Board vs Thorton Top Speed OBDII CAT Performance Chip Comparison


All parts are identical on both modules, they have just been moved around and some of the led light colors have been changed. It uses the all too familiar microprocessor, the PIC16F59, which we already stated does not have the capacity to hold genuine vehicle maps. It’s memory is too small. I think we know why these two parts are so similar (because it is the same product from the same source – China!):



OBDIICAT Scam Chip on Aliexpress
OBDIICAT Scam Chip on Aliexpress


Low and behold, as we can see from the above screen grab, the module is definitely sourced from China, at a price of about $4.32 a piece! Not only is the Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat chip itself identical to the listing above, it is the EXACT SAME photo shown on the Thorton chip tuning website! They literally took the same photos from the supplier on aliexpress and used it on their website! Further down the page, the same aliexpress listing compares the Thorton Top Speed OBDII Chip to – you guessed it – the original NitroOBD Yellow scam chip!


Aliexpress Thorton Top Speed OBDII Chip vs NitroOBD Comparison
Aliexpress Thorton Top Speed OBDII Chip vs NitroOBD Comparison


The Chinese supplier on aliexpress actually ADMITS this is the same product! Unbelievable. Need to see more? Further down the aliexpress page they show more comparisons:


Aliexpress Thorton Top Speed OBDII Chip Comparison to Nitro OBD Diesel and Benzine
Aliexpress Thorton Top Speed OBDII Chip Comparison to Nitro OBD Diesel and Benzine


Here we see the Chinese supplier claiming that the Top Speed OBDII chip is equivalent to the older NITRO obd and ECO obd modules (which are internally identical), and also claiming that the module works on BOTH GASOLINE AND DIESEL VEHICLES! This supports our previous view that the module is in fact universal and is a one size fits all device which fits on any vehicle because it is a scam.

From these facts, we can clearly see that the Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip is not what it claims to be. Our first suspicions were correct. It has been shown to be just another of the now numerous light flasher scams with a new colored case and different colored lights!

To confirm this, we connected the Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip to a vehicle and drove for the recommended 125 road miles and noticed no difference in fuel economy, performance or any other vehicle behaviour. There was absolutely no noticeable gain, and we didn’t even need a dyno to notice (we didn’t really expect any gains, so we weren’t disappointed)! Most drivers can easily detect an increase of 10HP or more without additional tools / gauges. Thorton claims some users saw gains of 40HP? No way.

To further confirm that the programming inside the microprocessor is indeed the same as the numerous verified Nitro OBD scams we previously reviewed, we connected both modules to a 12V power supply on the bench and noted the blink intervals of the led lights (OUR BLINK TEST):


SuperOBD Scam Chip vs Thorton Performance Chip Blink Bench Test
SuperOBD Scam Chip vs Thorton Performance Chip Blink Bench Test


Blink Test Video:


Both the Nitro OBD tuning scam (Left) and the Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip (Right) blinked at EXACTLY the same blink rate! Same programming, same blinking interval, same scam (but different colored lights though!).

You may have noticed some of the previous scams blinked in a different pattern (like a standby interval). This is explained in the original NitroOBD videos at the top of this article. The NitroOBD has been found to change patterns depending on the activity detected on the other OBD port pins. It’s job is to fool the consumer into thinking it is communicating with the vehicle. It has one mode which simulates fast blinking lights to make the user think it is communicating with the vehicle. When the pin has no activity, it blinks slowly as if in a low power or standby mode (although it has no ability to truly enter a sleep mode, this is just a light pattern change). We showed with the previous scams that they all exhibit the ‘sleep’ light pattern and this latest scam also does this. As with the other scams, it can also enter what we call the fake ‘activity’ pattern, which is what we saw in this last test. Needless to say, both modules exhibited the same blink pattern, as both the Thorton Chip (right) and the NitroOBD scam (left) both contain the same microprocessor with the same circuit board and the same programming!



From our research as well as testing we find that the Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip is just another of the many light blinking boxes like the NitroOBD. Our instincts early on were correct. Don’t CHIP in your hard earned money for this – you’re better off to buy a BAG OF POTATO CHIPS!



It seems the same crew that brought us the Thorton Performance Chip is at it again – they have another website with identical logos and graphics – This one claims to have an address in Tacoma, Washington as opposed to the previous one in Georgia, and this new address is actually a UPS store in Tacoma, WA. The layout, images and design are identical to the first thorton website we reviewed above, but this one also adds an air supercharger turbine as well as other accessories. Given the thorton performance chip is also present on the new website, their other products are most likely of the same quality! Here they don’t even try to hide the name of the ‘Thorton” performance chip:


Thorton Superchargers Nitro OBD Scam Page
Thorton Superchargers Nitro OBD Scam Page


Here they openly admit the name of the performance chip is “NITRO PERFORMANCE CHIP”! The same name of the original NitroOBD chip scam! They also admit near the bottom of the page that their performance chip is “an inexpensive, universal solution”. So much for a custom programmed chip! It is a one size fits all scam device, just as we already determined above. This new website also has a D rating on the BBB website:



Thorton Superchargers BBB Complaints
Thorton Superchargers BBB Complaints


A customer reports they had issues with the new thortonsuperchargers website in that they would not accept a refund and the wires were too short to fit / had missing parts. Here is a more detailed comparison of both websites’ ‘about us’ page:


Thorton Performance Chip Website vs Thorton Superchargers Website Comparison
Thorton Performance Chip Website vs Thorton Superchargers Website Comparison


Be alert – these two websites are related and both scams should be avoided!


If after all this, you STILL are considering purchasing this product, here is our response:


Thorton performance Tuner Review
Thorton Top Speed Performance Tuner nitro obd scam
Thorton Performance Engine Tuner Chip Review
thornton chip tuning website
thornton chip tuning performance chip
thorton chip tuning installation instructions
thornton chip tuning instructions
performance chip tuning reviews
thornton performance chips reviews
thorton performance chip reviews


140 thoughts on “Thorton Top Speed OBDII Cat Performance Chip Tuner Review / Teardown

      1. Yep, boycott China at all extra expense and wont be suprised to see this product at the Wallmart checkout display.

        Now you can explaine the crappy drills and tools as well !.

        Good stuff and thank you ..

    1. I just installed Thorton chip on my 2004 c230 mecedez, it did improve the horsepower, I can felt it increased about 20 horsepower, I don’t know if it can save gas consumption, Thorton is a legit product,

      It is not fare if they don’t test it but just compare the packing, outlook and other ,
      it is totally nonsense!

      1. I don’t know where you are writing this from, but it is clear that you don’t have a command of the English language. My guess is that you are a part of the scam and are responsible for some of the other glowing reviews we’ve seen on multiple websites. The only thing that is nonsense here, is this chip and your comical reply. Have a nice day.

        1. He’s apart of what is known as the .50 cent army, a branch of the Chinese communist party meant to make highlight china shining in all its natural glory and spread great wonderful stories and reviews about everything China whilst talking shit and spreading rumors and fake news about the US. The .50 cent army can slurp my butt!

          1. I believe simon and I believe in his macadeez too. In fact, I’m pretty sure I passed him methodically testing horsepower without somehow knowing how to measure fuel economy. When I saw him lick his finger and then stick it the air, the wind was blowing due-west…so that’s 19-22 hp’s, and he’s spot on.👌🏽 Don’t let them get to you simon little “s,” they just drank too much haterade.

          2. Preach on Brother than person is not an eglish speaker and one of the scammers most likely. Don’t offer him the b thing, he might accept 🤣

        2. I can’t express how much I hate this. Taking advantage of the hard working american that expects honesty and integrity. Pure filth and garbage. Scum.

        3. Hahhahaha I was just thinking the same thing he definitely doesn’t speak English! Or has a phone with spell check!!! Hahahah I fucked up and spent 30$ on the bullshit stage 1 ! Smh lesson learned!

          1. Thank you.
            Reminds me of the dash cam I bought. For ? Two months I was promised, the refund/credit to my card. I finally disputed the charge. Bank said Too Late.
            Is there a chip that you recommend?

          2. Sadly all checked so far are scams, especially any in this shape and size. Would recommend go to a real tuning shop if possible

      2. do you have a dyno result to back that claim up pal probly not but here ill help ya out, ever hear of the placebo effect youve been duped my friend

      3. I bought the Thorton Performamce Chip, for 2020 Subaru wrx before, I seen this write up scam. I should’ve known better, you just don’t get horsepower that cheap! I’m waiting on my Cobb tuner now.

        1. I did Cobb on my 370Z before I supercharged it. Didn’t notice any improved performance, but they put my car on their You Tube advertising without my permission. Another scam I fell for.

      4. simon, vamos a ver. acabo de comprar el producto por 3 euros, lo abri y es exactamente la misma placa. no manda info a la ecu, es un dispositivo placebo, que da ordenes con el chip, a las led, para tener un patrón de parpadeo bro. que los 3 pines principales de un dongle obd son los de una punta del dispositivo, y no hay uso ni conecciones soldadas alguna, hacia la placa. tengo la partner conectada en tiempo real para verle los numeros, y no hay cambios modificados en la ECU, por parte del dongle obd2cat que compré. si sentiste aumento de 20, yo creo que eran 19.

    2. It’s a total scam I ordered one for my new ford truck told them 2021 f250 6.2 v8 then sent me get this a 2021 f250 6 cylinder ,really ford only made 3 engines 6.2 ;7.3 and diesel were the hell did they find a 6cylinder chip .total scam it was printed on chip 6 cylinder : sent me a replacement same number on chip but for 6.2so they say does nothing for mpg or anything

    3. Same, thank you! Is there a chip that actually works? If so what is it… Can someone actually save on gas?

    4. I made the mistake to buy it without consulting any online forums and guess what, total crap.

      Have driven for over 200km and no changes to mention. Complete waste.

      The worst part is that they promise a refund within 30 days and as you figured they haven’t even replied to my email asking for a refund. IT IS A SCAM my dear car enthusiasts.

      Wishing all a happy new year.

  1. Perhaps it’s time we see how long they survive in Tacoma, as the street racing scene here is full of guys who will have no issue with beating BS’rs into the ground? 🙂

  2. I have a 2021 Toyota Supra 3.0 Premium
    I prefer the stage 3
    What is the recommended chip for this car
    Where can i but one, what price
    Who can install it
    I live in Fort Myers Fl.

    1. We cannot recommend any ‘chip’, as the majority of those we examined have been fakes. We would recommend seeking a real consult from a reputable tuning shop or dealer which physically writes changes into your vehicle – perhaps they can point you in the right direction. Your best choice will also depend on what your goals and price range are.

      1. You guys never test Thorton but talking bullshit about it.
        I just installed Thorton Stage 3 for my 2004 C230 mecedez, I am happy with it because it increased the horse power at least 20%, it give me lot of dring fun,

        Test it before you give comment

        1. Spoken like a true Thorton employee. Your poor spelling is also a nice touch. Which was it – 20HP gain or 20% gain – each of your fake comments here claims something different but your IP is the same. There is a difference between 20HP gains and 20% gains you know. Truth be told, we exposed this as a scam with numerous evidences, the packaging is just one of these. There is no circuitry present to fulfill any of the outrageous claims it has. It simply does not have the electronics to do anything more than blink a light. You have a lot of angry people here, some with damaged vehicles. I would suggest instead of trying to save your scam product, you need to refund some customers and stop selling this crap. No one here falls for it anymore.

        2. You said 20 horsepower in your previous BS comment. Now its 20% ….. Everyone is on to your BS. Who doesn’t capitalize their own name? If it smells like BS …. it is.

        3. Is mecedez supposed to be Mickey Dees, like McDonald’s? And how did you install it at McDonald’s? Was service quickly to happen? And this horse, that’s 20% horse meet correct?(should be meat but you’ll understand better spelling meet). So many questions about the bullshit you make the talking with commie. Have the fun with eating you mecedez roflmao ayba

    2. Well you’re probably the only guy on the planet that has a Thornton race chip that Is actually works Like the company claims . I have a RS5 convertible super charged I bought the Thornton race chip stage 3 . My review for this product is one word GARBAGE!!!! No disrespect it’s just how I feel

  3. Wow, thanks so much, I was also seriously considering buying this ! How can these scams be possible? Any suggestions that I can look into for my 2019 Edge ST (in Toronto Canada)?

    1. Thanks for reading the article. Sadly these scams are big business now. Unfortunately we can’t recommend any ‘chip’ given the extremely poor track record of the ones we have analyzed here. Check out a legitimate tuning shop – they may have some good suggestions that will be safe for your wallet and your ride!

  4. Thank you so much for your review and post. No real surprise here, CCP has been trying to stick it to us for a long time. Why are we even allowed to buy from this COMMUNIST country?

  5. After reading this, the best thing for me to do is just consider a real tune done by professionals. Yes, this costs around $500.00, but it would be the correct way to do it.
    Thank you for a most excellent review and saving me about $60.00 and possible damage to the car.

  6. yeah, purchased one in the hopes that they might not be a scam… did nothing except through an error code after 200 miles.

      1. This guy took his Thornton out of his 2012 eclass 4cyl Mercedes and put straight in a 08 s550 amg Mercedes. It started sputtering and skipping within 1 min. Any idea why? Also….. I don’t like the dude much, not enough to warn him. But I’m curious on why that would happen anyway.

  7. I just found what looks like one of these “blink boxes” in the ODBII port of a used car I purchased. No name or anything on the device. The logo on it is a fist wrapped around a lightning bolt. Is this the same garbage?

      1. Thank you for that quick response, and for all the information you’ve shared on this website. Based on what I read in your articles, it sounds like this thing doesn’t make any changes to the ECU so nothing to worry about after removing it.

  8. Well damn. Kinda heartbroken? Not really. I knew 60+ hp was a bit of a stretch. Wish I had of read this a month ago. They aren’t much of a shipping company either. Mine stayed in GA for about a week after they said “it’s shipped”. Wow. Thus is probably the most worthless product I’ve ever ordered. Thank you again for the education.

    1. Thanks for ur information on this company taking peoples hard earn dollars but they will bow their knees before Jesus Christ one day and burn in hell for a enteraly time so I say may they rest in hell the scum of the earth

  9. How is it that these chips do have many positive &varying positive reviews on sites as eBay etc?are we to bealive that every positive or even somewhat positive review is a purchaser imagining it?is it possible the chips have a degree of air flow temp adjustment data on it.either via the seller,or the shipper?a “cheap alternative”or solotion” to a more complex tune?

    1. Answer: because the sellers ask the buyers to leave ‘creative’ feedback in return for paypal money or other perks. We have shown proof of this in previous articles. Are some buyers happy with this junk? I’m sure a few are – ones that imagine it is working due to the placebo effect and are fooled by the blinking lights. It is only possible that the modules have a light blinking program, that is it – there is physically no room on the ic for anything more substantial. We have proven the scam modules are identical to $3 ones direct from China. They behave exactly the same and blink with the same pattern. They are just that – light blinkers and nothing more. To summarize, a scam.

    2. I bought a floor lamp and the company was going to give me a $10 Amazon gift card if I left “creative feedback”.

    3. Mine works without a doubt and has been for years….i dunno what these whiners are complaining about, seriously.

      1. Maybe they ‘complain’ because they are tired of being conned. We have proven based on the physical device itself that it cannot deliver what it claims.

        1. Maybe K Boogie is feeling the placebo effect. Rather than admit to being conned, he has convinced himself that he feels the advertised performance and gas mileage claims. I say “put it on a dyno and see what you’ve got”.

      2. Well you’re probably the only guy on the planet that has a Thornton race chip that Is actually works Like the company claims . I have a RS5 convertible super charged I bought the Thornton race chip stage 3 . My review for this product is one word GARBAGE!!!! No disrespect it’s just how I feel

      3. bro, tiene una puñet… caja con luces leds, gastandote bateria , haciendote efecto placebo durante años, nadie se queja, te estamos advirtiendo de lo ton… que estas pareciendo tan sobervio contestando. el chip que utilizan no tiene capacidad para mapeos o remapeos en tiempo real o cada 200km, diesel o gasolina…. solo sirve ese chip para memorizar un patron y ejecutar las 3 leds, y hacerte creer. conecta tu mald…. auto a un scanner mientras tienes el obd2 puesto de hace años. y aprecia que no hay comunicacion entre la ECU o ediciones hechas o modificados los numeros… por parte de ninguno obd2 port. te lo digo yo, que tengo de todo para mi partner hdi 1.6 y acabo de comprar este dispositivo y me devolvieron los 5 dolares si no comentaba. saludos.

  10. Unbelievable! I knew there were scams out there, but they really lay on the BS! I even emailed them and asked if they are vehicle specific and they responded with an answer that they are universal. So, they shot themselves in the foot! Great article, thank you so much!!!

  11. So I shouldn’t even bother to try and get a refund? I thought it was to cheap to be real but I bought it anyway. What a dummy I am!

    1. I purchased a Thornton 60 hp for my Cadillac. What a scam! Nothing but a smoke and mirror show. My suggestion is don’t waste you time or money on their pieces of crap. I feel the same way a the guy that said, “Better off buying package of potato chips”

  12. I have not seen any more economy on my tuner unit on my 2019 ford f-50 3.5 ecoboost. After having the plug in for 3 tankfuls, without a doubt, the factory 3.5 ecoboost ECO mode works the best without Thortons tuner device plugged in. I am disappointed with the marketing group for Thorton who sells a lie to the public for just $89.95.

  13. I made the boneheaded move and bought one of the Thorton performances models tonight before I read this article. I will be calling them today to cancel the order and if they refuse then I will call Citi Bank and ask them to put a stop on the credit card payment. Im glad I found this website before I lost $149.00 . Why a 149 because I was really stupid and bought the enhanced performance package with Bluetooth for Android for an extra 59 bucks. Thank you for enlightening me on the scam.

    1. Ditto, I just ordered exactly what you did today, had some doubts so I kept looking for reviews. Now I want to test it…..and if it doesn’t do anything we’ll see if they’ll honor their money back guarantee!

  14. I bought one. I don’t get the gas claims. But my car is noticeably quicker. I want to take all this research to heart. But I feel a difference. Oh well

    1. The general consensus is to steer clear of ANY ‘tuner’ or ‘programmer’ in this shape, regardless of color, logo or brand. ALL we have examined to date have been junk.

  15. Run a “reverse image search” on the image file showing the shop workers on Thorton’s website.

    I copied the below image URL and searched for it on tinyeye(.)com:

    The results show this is an image taken from one of the below two sites. Both which state the image is from “Kasey Kahne Sprint Car Shop”

    1. Good sleuthing. The first site has the domain expired and the second has that photo taken down. However it is quite evident they used a wallpaper and put it on their site, making it appear to be from their shop. Common habit for most scammers.

  16. I bought a stage 3 for my Audi tried it 3 weeks did not change a thing on gas Mileage or power. Contacted Thornton’s to get a refund they said probably defective. So I sent it back and they sent me another one. Tried the new one same results. Told them I want to return it they said no been over 30 days. I said no only had it two weeks. They said purchase date was over 30. Yeah from the first one I sent back. Second been 2weeks. They said don’t matter company policy. I said a few bad things snd told them I was gonna leave bad reviews. Then they said I better have documented all results because they would take legal action against me. 🤣🤣 I said anyone can write a review dumbasses!!

  17. Hey Guys,
    Thanks so much for the intel, I was about to buy one of these specious units!!! Upon reading your information I emailed Thorton directly, and asked how a $90 chip can increase power to a 1.4 Fiat 500 aspirated engine by 60hp, I even said I would be happy with a 20bp! This is reply I got:
    Hi James,

    Thank you for reaching out. Sometimes our chip is going to enrich air fuel ratio to increase power, other times it will lean it out a bit to increase efficiency based on your driving habits and history it will analyze data coming from the vehicles ECU to find the right opportunities to make adjustments.

    Let me know if you have any other questions.

    Kind Regards,
    Gwen Miller
    I then replied this explanation is ambiguous at best, please explain how your chip can achieve this? I did not get a reply!!!

    Guys this is a scam, for all the would be buyers, steer clear!! I know its tempting who does not want a power increase for such little money, taking 2 minutes to install!!! If its to good to be true, it usually is.
    Thanks again guys.

  18. this is what they told me in chat
    You: is this Chip made in the US or china
    Mia Davis: It’s here in US
    Mia Davis: everything is US made

    I order this stage 3 and I never got it USPS lost the package and they would not give me back my money.

    I called the bank HAHA…….

  19. Well their ad was accurate in one thing. Using it surely wouldn’t void your warranty anymore than singing along with Tiny Tim as you drive to work.

  20. Thank saved me 90. Dollars and a I told you so from my WIFE. And that is priceless..thank you so very much

  21. i did buy one and 4 months later i forgot bout it . it did nothing im going to pull it out in morning since i just ordered a real tuner for 700

  22. I am sooooo glad I came across this website, somehow I was re-directed to their website from extreme terrain a reputable store, so somehow I thought they were the ones selling this p.o.s. Then doing a research i found two youtube reviews one saying is junk that didn’t anything and the other one on a jeep wrangler praising the performance gains. The review is dated August 2021 strangely he turned off the comments mmm? I wonder why… So thank you very much I had the chip in the in the cart ready to spend 89.99 +tax wow that was close. BTW check the reviews there are only 7 reviews since September 19, 2021 ! two on the 19th two on the 27th. two on October (24 & 27) and one in November 28. So it looks like they only had the time to auto-review every month . . . if the chip was that good that review list would be way longer I think.

  23. just bought a used one off a guy, he said it worked great. real nervous about getting it now, hope it works.

      1. What in the hell happened to Simon? I guess he decided to give up trying to convince us that his 2004 Mercedes got a 20% increase in HP. Or was it an increase of 20 HP? Doesn’t matter Simon. You’re a scammer and a huge piece of crap!

  24. 1 more testimonial that this product is garbage. Additionally, the support department will stall you until the “return period” has passed to avoid providing any refund. Save your money!

  25. Very, very good. Think about the masses i.e. young adults, hook line sinker individuals, non-researchers etc. It adds up, and pays scam likely individuals and or foreign companies ungodly amounts of money. All in all, it frustrates me our government let’s this happen to Americans, taking rogue writers to uncover the truth, while doing nothing. Thank you for this article as this information saved me a potato sack, hopefully countless Americans as well. I hope this article dropped sales for Thorton, dramatically.

  26. Thank you for your article. I’ve heard about tuning chips improving HP and milage for several years and was thinking about buying one. Glad I decided to look for reviews other than what they had on their site before buying one.

  27. Whoa! I came so close to buying one of these for my ’16 Tundra. So grateful for your time & efforts on warning us about this scam. Now to find a legit OBD2 performance tuning chip.

  28. Thanks so much for saving me $180! I had 2 in my cart (one for each of our vehicles), but something told me to check website reviews. Despite the Google search result saying it’s a “trusted store”, I found this. I owe you guys!! 🙂👍👍

  29. I bought the Thorton tuner $85 Read the reviews and when it arrived i didn’t open the package Put it in another package and sent it back. Got my refund in a week Found this garbage on the American Muscle Website WTF

  30. I should have done my due diligence. I bought the level 3 for my 08 Shelby and absolutely no difference. I am out $90 US which equated to Canadian is $112. I am a retired cop and if I was in the States there would not be a rock these guys could hide under. I never buy china crap but got sucked in. Even the B&M rearend cover on my car, I came to find out is flipping from china, and the parent company is Holley I believe.

  31. This company is a complete scam. They agreed to refund money after receiving return. After many reassures by email. Product was brand new in box. They recieve there fake product back and my money. DO NOT SPENT YOUR MONEY ON THIS PRODUCT. SCAMMER ALERT⚠️

  32. Thanks for puting the truth out there and easy to find, i think ill just fill my gas tank with some premium non ethanol , im sure ill get better mpg and gain in horses than those low down dirty scamming coc* suckers from china can offer me

  33. I used a Thornton Chip for over 200 miles with no increase in fuel economy, power, and over all performance. In fact , now my check engine light is on and it is throwing of multiple trouble codes. Is there a consumer agency to file a complaint?

  34. Oh boy, i was just about to buy the stage three. figured if it didn’t do anything at least it wudn’t hurt, so glad i read this. thanks guys

    1. Same here, John. I had even clicked on PayPal to pay for the Stage 3 for 2005 Ford Ranger. I wonder if there are any good ones out there that actually works. (via OBD plug)

  35. I’m honestly shocked with how so many of you purchased one of these scam products. I understand not everyone is super educated about tech, ECUs, and/or how vehicles work in general…but use some common sense people!
    These scam companies don’t care what you think or about your negative reviews, they already got your money.

    That said, I really appreciate the authors of this article and the in-depth research they conducted. I’m glad it’s helped many of you avoid purchasing this BS.

  36. I ordered one for my Tacoma Truck, no improvement using the stage 3. I was looking for more miles per gallon. My Tacoma runs better without the chip. I tried to return it for a refund. Customer Service person asked me to try another chip to see if it was any better? Same results after numerous resets, I asked for a return for refund, now I can’t because my time had expired. Not a nice way to treat a senior citizen?

  37. Got mine last week, arrived late. Installed and no difference. I’m returning it. Hoping they will refund promptly.

  38. why doesn’t our government do something about these scams? I can just imagine how many have been ripped off, Biden would probably blame this on Putin

  39. I purchased the Thornton performance chip and saw absolutely no difference in gas mileage or performance and have complained to the company several times never getting anywhere please please please do not waste your money on this product

  40. I do not recommend the Thornton chip. I put one on my 04 Maxima and it did not seem to affect the power but it did decrease my mileage by a couple mpg. So I talked to customer service and they said it was a bad one and they replaced it with a new one that did the same as the old one.

  41. I appreciate the people that took the time to review this product. I wish that I would have seen this prior to me purchasing the stage 3 chip for my 2018 Honda Civic sport hatchback. I found this review looking for instructions online as to how this chip worked since my box didn’t have the instructions in it. I’m guessing from the sounds of it that I’m not going to get my $90 back I’m highly disappointed I was really excited about my car performing better I should have followed my gut when I thought that this is way too inexpensive for the kind of upgrade it’s supposedly offers. I feel like an idiot. I normally do so much research to avoid being scammed. Since it said the company was based out of Georgia I didn’t do much research and just purchased it believing that Americans wouldn’t screw me over. I guess I’ll try to return it. Sucks this is a birthday present to myself. Thought you were supposed to get wiser with age I guess I’m getting more stupid thanks again for the review guys

  42. To late for me wish I could have read the reviews before I waste my money on this BS please don’t waste your money on these chips

  43. Tell ya what , I am a 30 year tech, all about horsepower, electrical diag and such so I tore apart saw the design and it may be possible for that chip to hold some sort of mapping. So I hooked up a piggy back to my lap top and investigated, and check the vehicles algorithm and mapping compared to the chip. Guess what there is none just a slick line of code that flashes and creates timing flashes. No lines of code for ANY increase in anything but to turn light on , off and to speed up and then once key off is detected it slows down that’s it . So being me I got another, SAME no lines of code at all they will support any performance mapping. So there ya go. Good Job Guys!!

  44. Total scam. These Chinese rat bastards should be shot! Bought the stage 2 for my hot rod Lincoln and got nothing, period. Rather than send it back, I took my 10lb mash hammer to it. That was more satisfying for me!

  45. This article saved my a** $146! I ordered it this am as I couldn’t find any derogatory reviews. When I found your review I was shocked! I canceled it and they are refunding my order (it hasn’t shipped yet). I made sure to document the chat I had because I wanted everything in writing and when I called to verify my cancellation and refund, they said it would take 4-5 business days….the guy had a really bad accent by the way when I called to verify. I made sure to document the chat I had because I wanted everything in writing. Thanks again!

  46. Hahaha!!!! Has anyone searched their address on Google maps? Their address, 3201 Macon Rd Suite 139 Columbus, GA 31906? It’s a Publix shopping center. That’s just too funny. Maybe it’s by the Nutella.

  47. ECM/PCM Processor chips? Where are they? Can they be reprogrammed eprom? What shops will do this doubtful a dealer will. Are the re-programmers able to be done at home if you have the right data software? We need more information on this not just a brush off. Thanks advance for any help we may or may not get.
    Just want better gas mileage out of the 1998 through 2003 Ford Lincoln trucks SUVs, 15.4 miles per gallon isn’t cutting it anymore with this ridiculous excuse of inflation for gas food and what not

  48. Dang I actually bought one just never got around to putting in the box mine came in is the white super crap box any ideas or suggestions on what I can do or if there is anything I can do about it

  49. In the month of April I bought a thorton chip for a 2017 ford focus, the first weeks I didn’t notice a difference, then I saw that I started to save a little gasoline and a little more power. In the month of August I was driving my car and it started to fail until it turned off and didn’t start. I took it to the dealer and when they checked it, the first thing the mechanic told me was that the high pressure fuel pump was damaged and the cost is $1,200.00 dollars. The mechanic notices the chip and tells me to disconnect the chip since it was the cause of the damage to the fuel pump. he has sent several emails to thorton chip and they do not answer me. on their website I could give them a negative review and they deleted it. all reviews are 5 stars. Scam & Fake

  50. i bought this chip before i saw the reviews, after reading them i chose not to even try and put it in my truck, instead i bought a pedal commander chip and tried that. if you are looking for better throttle response in your vehicle i highly recommend you try the pedal commander!! its amazing!!! it totally woke up my 2018 ram with the cummins engine. dont waste money on thorton.

  51. I bought the Thorton Performamce Chip, for 2020 Subaru wrx before, I seen this write up scam. I should’ve known better, you just don’t get horsepower that cheap! I’m waiting on my Cobb tuner now.

  52. Bought a Thorton chip
    No noticeable performance increase
    No gas mileage increase
    After two weeks they wont refund me
    THORTON is a scam

  53. Thank you, Thank you!!

    Just save me 90 bucks and the embarrassment of being duped by these chinese crap!! Great review and just what I wanted to know.

  54. I’m glad I found this review before blowing money in my WRX STI. Is there a reputable chip or module that I can use to tune my 2011 WRX STI? It’s a fully rebuilt Wiseco motor with a new COBB turbo kit.



  55. I have an old 2004 Silverado and I’m a full time student going to electrical school. I just fixed my truck myself after doing a lot of homework on the idle issues it was having.
    Once I got it fixed I decided I wanted to continue trying to improve it. My stepdad told me that performance chips were a great way to go, and the bigger the better.
    So I googled performance chips and multiple times the top site that came up was Thorton, so I totally fell for it. I read all of the reviews, and they just seemed to be too varied and unique to be made up.
    I guess it was just a perfect storm of circumstances that drove me to dive right into buying the stage three chip. I wasn’t thinking about how small the circuit board is or anything like that. I just assumed that with today’s technology that size doesn’t really matter anymore.
    Anyways, not sure what to do with it now. I don’t even know if I want to send it back, because it sounds like too much of a headache. I’m heartbroken because I work 2 part time jobs and make less than $1,000/month while going to school full time. I saw the $90 as an investment that would end up paying for itself, since my truck only gets about 14mpg.
    I got a deal on it for $1,500, so it was worth it, but the extra 4-5 mpg they promised sure sounded nice.
    I think I’ll just put it in the ground and stomp on it, and forget about it.
    I’ll just be happy I found this site before I actually installed it in my truck. I just got it in the mail today. Thought I would come online and read a whole bunch of awesome reviews about their chips in prep for installing it tomorrow.
    Needless to say, instead I found this site…

  56. I fell for this before doing research. I plugged it in and two days later my gel battery was shot. Literally zero amps. This was on a 2018 Alfa Romeo Guilia.

  57. We found one in a trade-in at our car lot and I always “google” search the products we find just for fun. This product/review has been so interesting to dive into. PC Guide did an amazing job and so did the articles you linked your readers to. The thing that I find quite funny is that Ali is still trying to sell these. The price has dropped to $7.13 plus a $3 coupon! Thank you PC Guide for doing the best you can to protect consumers as always.

  58. Thanks, saved me a few dimes.
    Try and look shit up before I buy anymore.
    If it sounds too good…. 😉

  59. Well, I bought one a couple of years ago for my brand new, 2021 Miata, at the suggestion of one of the Mazda guys. Installed it and hoped for the best. The power seemed good, but no change with the gas mileage. Then the battery died. Got is recharged and last week it died again. Would not restart. Had it towed to Mazda and they found the Thornton Chip Tuner and disconnected it. Said that was the problem. Cost me $180 for the diagnostics. Like many others, I was scammed by this product. There is no free lunch, boys. Thank you for your excellent research. Very insightful.

  60. I bought the stage 1 chip for my 2018 Altima and I have to say it is bullshit. And I can’t get my money back so their guarantee is a damn lie just like they lie about the increase in horsepower. I think it was just a small green light under the dash. I will NOT RECOMMEND Thornton to any of my friends

  61. I don’t know why I decided to do research two days after ordering this junk , I should’ve known that it was to good to be true for my mishsibisbi eclipse to gain 60 horsepower from a cheap chip 🤦‍♂️

  62. Total SCAM!!! Yea, I purchased the stage 3, for my brand new 2022 Nissan Murano Platinum. I drove it for about 900 miles, and then purchased the scam tuner. Absolutely no difference in mpg, or horsepower!!! Total scam!! I just purchased a brand new 2023 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum now, and was on their chat asking them questions. When I brought up my Murano, they mysteriously disappeared and disconnected me from the chat!!! What a scam!!! Don’t waste your money, like we have!!!!

  63. I unfortunately did not see this review page when put the money down and bought the stage 3 and link cable for my 03 excursion v-10 4×4, this thing made zero noticable hp improvement (not tested just by my feel ) and I went from 12.1 mpg to 10.4 mpg and of course returning it even in original box well good luck. Thanks for this review page I just wish I had found it before I bought it.

  64. I really wish I would’ve read this before purchasing. I’m so annoyed. Not mad. Just annoyed. I don’t even want a refund. I just want this company shut down. False advertising all around. Fuck them.

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