Volkswagen Mark IV Forum banner
1 - 20 of 151 Posts

Diesel isn't a dirty word
11,031 Posts
It is about time I wrote this I think :)

Let's get this bit out of the way, you perform this mod at your own risk - if you screw your cluster up don't blame me! Only do this if you are confident you know what you are doing

Miles to empty on a VDO immobiliser 3 cluster - if you don't know which cluster you have then take a look at the cluster FAQ here and ask your questions on versions in that thread please :Y:

To use this guide you will need:

  1. An immobiliser 3 VDO cluster
  2. Vagtacho software and cable (VT)
  3. A Hex editor, I am using XVI32 available here

1. Connect up your cable to the laptop and car then with the ignition on run the Vagtacho software (VT)


2. If you know which cluster you have then you can skip this part and go to 3
Press Connect Any Tacho


VT will return the cluster info and from the part number and type you can tell if your cluster is VDO and immo 2 or 3 :Y:


Then click the disconnect button


3. Select VDO new from the ECU drop down list



And click on connect s elected ECU


VT will connect and return the following info


4. Reading the SKC code (PIN number)

Press the read PIN button


The SKC is returned by VT, to use in VCDS (Vagcom) put a 0 in front ie 03957


5. Reading the cluster eprom

Press the Read button in VT




When done File > Save



Save two copies of the file, one labelled original and one modified!!!

6. Editing the eprom

Close VT and open up the HEX editor XVI32 and File > open


Open the file you saved with the modified label [y]


To enable miles to empty the hex address $416 needs to be modified, in a standard cluster the value will be C1, to turn on MTE change the value to E1

Click on Address > Goto


Enter $416 in the box and make sure hexadecimal is s elected > OK


This will highlight the address value in the eprom file


Click on the address value and type in E1, the blue s election will then move to the right and s elect the next value but don't change this value.


If you make a mistake re load your file into the editor and start again :Y:

To enable lit pointers the value at address $1ED need to be modified, in your standard cluster it will be 30, the value is changed to 3X where x represents the value in the list below:

x value
3 - displays only
5 - gauges only
7 - displays and gauges only
9 - needles only
B - displays and needles only
D - Needles and Gauges only
F - all lit up

39 is the most common choice but feel free to experiment :Y:

Click on Address > Goto


Enter $1ED in the box and make sure hexadecimal is s elected > OK


This will highlight the address value in the eprom file


Click on the address value and type in 3x, the blue s election will then move to the right and s elect the next value but don't change this value.


Once you have finished editing File > Save

Close the editor

7. Uploading the modified eprom to the cluster

Open up VT again and connect to the cluster as in steps 1 and 3 above

Click on File > Read file >


select your saved modified eprom dump and this will be loaded into the VT memory buffer


Click on write eprom


Click on continue and VT will write the eprom back to the cluster


Wait until Done


Click on options > Reset Tacho


And that is it, disconnect your cables :Y:

If you have any issues with the eprom write then you can try to put the original file you saved back onto the cluster, this is not always possible however and the cluster could end up dead :(

Hope that makes sense

Please, no discussions on where to obtain pirate \ illegal copies of software in this thread - I will delete any references I find, you have been warned :mellow:

Diesel isn't a dirty word
11,031 Posts
Using the above methods change the value at $417, in a cluster without the Welcome message it will be 02, change the value to 6B to enable the message, the address has altered in some later clusters - you may need to change at 0x44F instead if the mod doesn't work at 0x417 :y:

This only works on a Full FIS VDO immo 3 cluster :y:

Diesel isn't a dirty word
11,031 Posts
There is a comprehensive discussion thread over on TDIclub for cluster mods :Y:

Vagtacho developers home page with a list of official distributers :Y:

There are a few different tacho dumps here, you can use them to practice or to flash to ther clusters, eg convert petrol to diesel

Edit 19/08/2011

Although the immo3 RB8 clusters can't be done at present with VagTacho there are other tools that can read the eprom, some clusters can have MTE enabled but some can't it is pot luck really - it all depends on the version of them :fortune:

The basic principals are the same for reading and writing the eprom and editing it, the value to change is:

0x0381 - 00 - Standard (MTE Off)
0x0381 - 02 - MTE on (if cluster supports it)

If you set the MTE bit on and it doesn't show up it is because the version of the cluster doesn't support the function.

One word of warning...... :blah:

It is best doing them on the bench though, I have had 4 RB8 clusters in the past 6 weeks that when trying to do them in the car have locked up when writing the eprom and the immobiliser has been triggered :dash2: Luckily re flashing the original eprom on the bench has sorted them out [heat] so now I take the RB8 clusters out to do them.

In short RB8 clusters are very tempremental and are easy to screw up so make sure you have a back up original eprom and ideally a spare cluster should all go Pete Tong :surrender:

1,403 Posts
Really clear write up!!

The only thing I would add is that the battery must be a good one, don't try writing with a duff battery on the car.

Diesel isn't a dirty word
11,031 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
If the illuminated needles don't show up straight away you can either leave the car for 15 minutes (locked) so the cluster totally powers off or reboot it manually by either pulling the cluster fuses or removing the battery lead. Once it has rebooted the functionality should be there.

The reboot from within VT should do it for you but I have had occasions where it needed a full power down to get the needles working.

If you do the battery pull don't forget that you might need any aftermarket radio codes [;)]

If you do the fuse pull make sure the ignition is off or you will throw an airbag light - you can turn it off with VCDS after though [y]

1,339 Posts
If it can read and write the eprom then yes but I suspect that it can't do that.
[*-)] i think you can re-write the eprom but they call it long coding. Might have to have a look and a play just hope my car has immo3 though.

7,324 Posts
Brilliant write up to a question thats asked a lot of times [Y]

Dont suppose you have pics of the options of illuminated needles but with some of the other ones instead? E.g Gauges, Gauges & Display & the other options available
1 - 20 of 151 Posts