Performance Chip Overview
This information has been gathered in my quest to increase the horsepower of my 1994 Volvo 850, S70, V70 turbo wagon. I am not affiliated, nor do I know any persons working at any of the companies mentioned, so there is no personal bias toward any particular company.
Because a chip does have some developmental costs I understand companies wanting to be compensated for their work. By compensation I can understand a $300 $500 sell price to offset these costs and include profit margins, but any more than that is a bit extreme based on the simplicity of burning chip after chip and installing it into the ECU. Understand that Volvos ECUs are not as easy as adding RAM to your home PC (not plug and play for the chip). The ECU must be sent to the tuner, the chip de-soldered and the newly program unit soldered back into the ECU. Hence, you will not see the $200 price of some American cars of the recent past from super chips and other companies.
I do not claim to be an expert, but I do have an electronics background and an engineering degree. I also work for a company that supplies two of the largest ECU manufacturers in the world (one in Europe and one on the U.S.).
My personal comfort level with the 2.3 T-5 turbo is about 285 horsepower. 300 hp may be within the scope of this engine, but I have concerns going over the 285 300 range due to engine internals and possible connecting rod issues. Remember you are forcing the engine to do more as boost is increased and there are limits. Volvo feels safe at just under 250 hp.