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  1. #1
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    Event Data Recorder - do BMWs have one?

    This Wednesday's LA Times Highway 1 section contained an article about Event Data Recorders and privacy concerns.

    In cars, EDR's record a continuous 5 second loop of data about a car's speed, acceleration, steering angles, etc. The article said that the data could be used to dispute a driver's account of conditions in an accident.

    For example, a car rear ends another. The driver of the car that ran into the other claims he was not exceeding 65 mph. The data recorder shows the vehicle's speed was 100 mph. Or, a driver claims to have stopped at a stop sign before a collision with another car which was crossing the intersection. The EDR shows the car did not stop.

    The story said that perhaps 25,000,000 (that's 25 million) cars on the road may be equipped with EDR's. Auto makers are not telling the buyers that the recorders are installed. Privacy advocates say this is a big problem.

    I would wonder who "owns" the data the EDR has saved? I would think it would be the car owner. Also, who could access the data? I would think, again, only the car owner. However, something tells me that car makers are not putting these devices into cars for the owner's benefit. The story didn't tell readers that EDR data had been used against a car owner yet, or that a car maker had surreptitiously downloaded the data from an EDR in a car it had sold, but it is reasonable to assume that if the cars are so equipped, at least the second event has occurred.

    If a car is equipped with an EDR, it obviously cost the car buyer something. Yet the car owner is not told that she/he has "bought" the device, nor what it added to the cost of the vehicle.

    I wonder if our beloved BMW's are equipped with EDRs, and are ready to "rat us out"?

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  2. #2
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    Story ran on evening news here... (m)

    in Boston on Wednesday I think it was. There was an accident earlier in the week and the "black box" showed the driver was speeding. Defense attorney is trying to get the data thrown out as inadmissable evidence. Cast ended saying that GM cars (can't remember starting w/ which year) are equipped w/ them and to call your car manf. to find out if yours is also.

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  3. #3
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    BMW in car computer will tell if engine overreved

    possibly to deny warranty, It was an issue on defective e46 m3 engines, but BMW fiexed them anyway,
    Jay Gans
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  4. #4
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    A know someone who got nailed with the data


    A work associate of mine in Puerto Rico has a 3.0 Z3 coupe. He over-revved his engine while drag racing with a 944. He pretty much caused serious damage to his engine (he had the rev limiter removed). He told the dealer that he didn't know what had happened as he was driving at normal speeds. The dealer came back to him and told him exactly on what gears he had reach how many RPMs and denied the warranty claim. He had to pay $4,000 out of his pocket. Based on that info I would say BMWs are definetely equiped with the black boxes. But don't know when they started doing that.




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  5. #5
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    GM Started with Vettes in 98



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  6. #6
    ChrisA
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    BMWs do not have the black box

    the engine computer (DME) records (depends on model) highest revs and usually time spent at highest revs. Some include some kind of timestamp too. This is used for mechanical diagnosis and (in some cases) warranty denial.

    They do not have a crash triggered black box that records speed/acceleration/braking etc. activity on a rolling basis that is saved after an accident.

    Mostly it's GM cars that have this.

    C.

  7. #7
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    i think in 96 or so

    I can't remember, but a freind of mine has a 95 M3 was saying that this was the model prior to the "black box" for rev's... not 100% sure




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  8. #8
    Tyrone
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    Exactly

    And I think this started with the E36 M3 as Marinakorp mentioned, and depends on model as you said. If I recall, on some cars the dealer can read this portion of the DME. Othertimes an FSE (field service engineer) is necessary.

  9. #9
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    At least one auto insurance company (Progressive) offers one that plugs into the OBD port. This allows them to log your driving habits, and either offer you lower rates, or cancel your policy.
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