Electronic ignition systems are a popular choice for classic car owners looking to improve the performance and reliability of their engines. The 123ignition system is a leading electronic ignition system designed specifically for use in classic cars. It offers a number of benefits over traditional mechanical ignition systems, including improved performance, longer lifespan, and little to no maintenance.

Mechanical vs Electronic ignition

An electronic ignition system is a modern alternative to the traditional mechanical ignition system that has been used in internal combustion engines for decades. One key difference between the two is the use of electronic components to control the ignition process, rather than mechanical parts such as contact points and springs.

One advantage of electronic ignition is its increased reliability and maintenance-free nature. With no mechanical parts to wear out or become misaligned, an electronic ignition system can provide consistent ignition timing for the life of the vehicle. This can result in improved fuel efficiency and overall engine performance.

In contrast, a mechanical ignition system relies on physical components that can wear out or become damaged over time. These parts require regular maintenance and adjustment to ensure proper ignition timing, which can be time-consuming and costly. In addition, mechanical ignition systems are more prone to failure or malfunction due to the mechanical nature of their components.

Overall, electronic ignition systems offer several benefits over their mechanical counterparts, including increased reliability, improved fuel efficiency, and easier maintenance. 

For a visual representation of the difference between these types of ignition systems and a comparison between different brands, check out our video below that compares the original mechanical ignition, an electronic ignition system from Pertronix and our own 123ignition.

The features and benefits of 123ignition

Fully electronic: no mechanical parts that can wear out over time, ensuring consistent performance

An electronic ignition system features a design without mechanical parts, eliminating the need for regular maintenance and ensuring consistent performance throughout the lifespan of the vehicle. Mechanical parts such as contact points, springs, and other components are not used, improving durability and reliability. The fully electronic ignition design also allows for precise control of the ignition timing and spark strength, resulting in a smooth-running engine and improved performance. The lack of mechanical parts also means that the distributor is less prone to failure and can operate reliably in harsh environmental conditions. Overall, the fully electronic design makes it a superior choice compared to traditional mechanical ignition systems.

Adaptive coil current: consistent spark strength at all RPMs

The 123ignition features an adaptive coil current, which means that the ignition coil current remains constant at every RPM. This ensures that the spark remains strong and consistent from low to high RPMs. The adaptive coil current technology helps to improve the overall performance of the engine by ensuring that the spark is always at its optimal strength. This is especially beneficial for engines that are subjected to high stress and demand, such as those in race cars or performance vehicles. Overall, the adaptive coil current technology helps to improve the reliability and efficiency of the ignition system, making it a valuable addition to any vehicle.

Supports different types of coils with resistance of 1 ohm or higher

Our electronic ignition system is designed to be compatible with various ignition coils that have resistance values of at least 1 ohm. This versatility allows it to be used in a range of engines and vehicles. The system's ability to work with different ignition coil types means you can find the perfect fit for your needs. Whether you're using a high-performance racing coil or a more traditional type, the system can provide reliable ignition control and performance. Explore our selection of compatible ignition coils to find the perfect fit for your vehicle.

Spark balancing: every cylinder gets the same timing advance with a difference of less than 0.5 degrees crankshaft

Furthermore, the ignition system features spark balancing, which guarantees consistent timing for each cylinder, with a deviation of less than 0.5 degrees of crankshaft rotation. This means that the spark plug will ignite the fuel at the same time in each cylinder, resulting in a more evenly running engine that delivers more power. This is especially important in engines with multiple cylinders, as an imbalance in spark timing can lead to reduced performance and reliability. Through the use of spark balancing, the ignition timing in your engine is optimized for improved performance and fuel efficiency..

Heavy duty aluminum housing that can withstand harsh environmental conditions

To ensure long-lasting performance, our electronic ignition system is designed to withstand harsh environmental conditions. Its aluminum casing is able to withstand extreme temperatures, moisture, and vibration, making it suitable for use in a variety of environments. This robust design ensures that the system can function properly and consistently, even in challenging conditions. As a result, classic car owners can trust that this ignition system will provide reliable and long-lasting performance, without sacrificing the performance or reliability of their engine.

Heavy duty aluminum housing of 123ignition's electronic ignition system.

Easy installation with LED indicator 

One feature that makes 123ignition systems a convenient and user-friendly choice is the LED indicator that helps with installation. While the LED indicator is not specifically indicating TDC position, it gives you an indication of the correct timing, usually around 8 degrees before TDC. This allows you to install the distributor with an approximation of the correct timing, but you'll still need to fine-tune the timing using a strobe lamp for the best performance. The LED indicator makes the installation process straightforward and ensures that your ignition system is properly set up for optimal performance. 

Multiple advance curves available and the ability to program your own curve

The 123ignition is available in three different versions: the pre-programmed version, which we refer to as the 'switch' version, and the programmable versions, the 123/TUNE and 123/TUNE+. The switch version comes with 16 pre-programmed advance curves that are suitable for a wide range of engines, and can be selected using a switch on the side of the ignition housing. This means that users can select a curve that is best suited for their needs, whether it be for racing or for use with alternative fuels such as ethanol. The pre-programmed curves for the switch version can be found in the back of the installation manual for 4-cylinders or 6-cylinders.

Alternatively, the 123/TUNE and 123/TUNE+ system also allows users to create and program their own custom curve, giving them even more control over their ignition system. This feature is particularly useful for those who are looking to fine-tune their ignition system for maximum performance and efficiency. By being able to program their own curve, users can ensure that their ignition system is perfectly tuned to their specific engine and operating conditions. 

Overall, the availability of multiple advance curves and the ability to program a custom curve are major benefits of our electronic ignition system, and are sure to be appreciated by those who are looking for precise and reliable ignition control.

Monitor your electronic ignition through a dashboard on your smartphone

Are you looking for an easy way to manage the settings of your electronic ignition system? Look no further than our 123/TUNE+ app, available for download on the Apple App store and Google Play store. Designed specifically for use with the 123/TUNE+ version of our electronic ignition system. This feature allows users to track and analyze various engine metrics in real-time, including RPM, spark advance, and vacuum advance. By monitoring these metrics, users can optimize the performance of their engine and ensure that it is running at its best. This feature is particularly useful for racing or other high-performance applications. The ability to monitor engine performance through a dashboard on a smartphone adds an extra level of convenience and control for users, and helps to ensure that the electronic ignition system is delivering the best possible performance.

Increases the reliability of your classic vehicle

One of the major benefits of our electronic ignition system is the increase in reliability it brings to your classic vehicle. Because it is fully electronic and maintenance-free, you no longer have to worry about the wear and tear of mechanical parts such as contact points, springs, and vacuum canisters. This not only saves you time and money on regular maintenance, but also ensures that your ignition system is consistently performing at its best. After upgrading, you can trust that your classic car's engine will run smoothly and reliably for years to come. This is especially important for those who rely on their classic vehicle as their primary mode of transportation or for those who participate in vintage car shows and events. The improved reliability allows you to enjoy your classic car to the fullest without the worry of ignition-related issues.


Our electronic ignition system is a versatile option for classic car enthusiasts, as it can be tailored to fit various car brands and models. As a direct replacement for traditional mechanical ignition systems, it's easy to install and offers improved performance, lifespan and maintenance free benefits. 

Looking for an upgrade to your classic car's ignition system? Browse our selection by car brand to find the perfect fit for your vehicle. Simply click on your car manufacturer below and discover our compatible options:

Can't find the distributor you're looking for? Don't worry, just get in touch with us and we may be able to help you out.

Installation and setup

Installing and setting up one of our electronic ignition systems is a straightforward process that can be completed by most mechanically inclined individuals with a little bit of patience and attention to detail. The system comes with an installation manual that provides step-by-step instructions, as well as a list of necessary tools and materials. There are also many online resources and video tutorials available to assist with the installation. Before beginning, it is important to familiarize yourself with the basic principles of ignition systems and how they work.

The installation process will vary depending on the specific make and model of your vehicle, so it is crucial to follow the instructions in the manual carefully. Once the system is installed, it will need to be set up and calibrated to ensure proper function. This usually involves setting the timing and adjusting the advance curve to match your engine's specifications.

In conclusion, with a little bit of effort and attention to detail, most individuals can easily install and set up the system to get the most out of their engine.

So whether you're looking to boost the performance of your classic car or simply want a reliable and maintenance-free ignition system, the 123ignition is a top choice. Its advanced features and easy customization make it a versatile and powerful tool for any enthusiast looking to get the most out of their engine.