I wanted to start this discussion thread to bring all of us together who are interested in hacking into the CAN buses on BMW vehicles.
While we don't have our CANBus Triple's yet... (hurry up Derek, we are all dying to get our hands on one :) )
Lets get this thread started with some open discussion. I am interested to see how many BMW hackers we got out there? Respond with your project idea if you have one. I'll go first.

My project idea:
I want to hack into the BMW CAN buses so that I can replace my iDrive display with an Android tablet, and have the center console buttons / knob control it.

Also for anyone interested in BMW CAN hacking this e90post forum link has a bunch of great info!


Wow, lots of good info in that link. I can't wait to see what you guys come up with.

While I haven't played with the iDrive, I was active when the icelink was introduced. I just downloaded the webinos api and am hoping I'll be able to get my hands on a car with iDrive soon.

What type of car are you currently driving?


I have a 2010 Mazdaspeed3. Not as much fun stuff as VW or BMW on the CAN bus, but still fun. I have my friends Audi available to hack on, as he moved to Hong Kong and left it here. So that will be a fun one.

Hey guys!

Really excited to get my CBT, it's somewhere on the US East coast at the moment (UK based).
I've got a huge amount of background with the CANBUS system on BMW's, and will be happy to share all I know with the community.

Hey Guys,

I just got my Triple (YAY!!! MANY THANKS DEREK!!!) and I am about to start diving into my BMW Mini Cooper S R53 (Australian Prod: 03/2003)

A couple of good idea's already, as well as links, thanks guys. My plan, initially, is to get a complete pulse on my little car.



Also just wanted to give a heads up. Incorrect Baud rate can cause a fault on the CAN bus even if you are not sending data!
Not sure if the CBT is trying to send some data on power on or what, but I connected to a 100k bus when my settings were still at 500k. Every time I connected the CBT to my car the car threw a bunch of CAN error fault codes.

Once I correctly set the CBT to the right baud rate this issue went away.

Derek - This might be a problem if you wanted to try to do auto Baud rate detection, some cars may not support it. Does your base code for the CBT right now try to send CAN data as soon as its powered on?

Hey folks...very glad to find this forum! I am in the early stages of a mod to my 2011 F07 - I want to add OEM style rear heated seats (yes I'm from a cold country - Canada - and am a bit obsessed about the rear heated seats missing from my car!). Anyway, I've searched all over the planet for a DIY without any luck - just snippets here and there. I managed to get a look at the BMW factory wiring schematic for the rear heated seats which has helped a lot but also brought some questions, The seat heaters are controlled by modules under the seats which have 12v from the fuse box but are co trolled by the KCan system (I'll try to post a pic which shows a portion of the schematic)...anyway, my question is about the CAN wiring and if there are any issues simply splicing into it wherever I can find it - info online seems to suggest CAN info is sent simultaneously to the BUS controller where it is prioritized and authorized, allowing the module to do its thing (in this case allow 12v to flow into the seat heaters). Any one have any thoughts about how and where I can hook into the K CAN and LIN? As mentioned, I'll try to post some the schematics for reference. Thanks a ton for your knowledge and help!

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These are like putting together a jigsaw puzzle - my apologies - the photos are parts of one schematic - the last photo is from an F01 electrical manual which is the same as I will have (said hopefully)! It is the simpler system without the rear climate control option - this is the same as the setup in the F07 and F10 without the rear (4 zone) climate. There are separate control modules for each seat and power to each along with ground wires (obvious from schematic). I think all I need to do is access the K Line Bus wires and splice in the connections to the seat heater modules...sounds so easy but how do I find/ identify the correct wires? Alternately, if I knew where the Junction Box was located in the car, I could put a new CAN wire at post 9 as noted in two of the pictures. again, any wisdom/help/guidance is genuinely appreciated!

I am working(term used loosely) on retrofitting a pair of E60 M5 Active bolster seats into my '69 Cutlass. Every feature on the seat is Can controlled. To start my project I visited BMW Planet for the wiring diagrams

In your case for the heated seats I would find the twisted pair that runs near the trunk that is on the same CAN line(kCan,Lin...nto sure for heated seats), and splice into them.

Does your F07 have the buttons to activate the rear seats once they are hooked up? If not, you may try what I did on my Pontiac G8GT, which was to have the front seats activate to high upon remote start(or regular start) whenever the ambient temp is below 40F. For this I used an arduino with an RTC temp sensor from Adafruit. This was one of my favorite mods because the seats will be toasty by the time I get into it.

Hope some of this helps you.

Hey JetMech...really appreciate the help. I decided in the end to pay my $30 and access and after some frustrating hours trying to navigate the site, found the wiring schematics I needed to properly emulate the OEM install. I did most of the wiring today and and quite confident it is right this time...the switches light up as they're supposed to - I just have to source proper fused power for the seat heat's not as easy as I thought :(. Adding a circuit to a modern BMW fuse box ain't easy - and the dealer parts guy so far has no clue how to do it...I'm digging further before I give up and use the 'add a circuit' things available at auto parts should be very simple but alas, it's a BMW...ugh. Almost there in any case and its summery here now so no need for heated seats until October perhaps...thanks again for the the preheated seats option you came up with!

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