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Retrofit parking sensors to 2011 M3

Discussion in 'E90/E92/E93 M3 (2008-2013)' started by bradtipp, May 17, 2011.

    bradtipp guest

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    1st off - Hi - 1st post as a new member! Relocated Brit now in Seattle with a 2011 M3 looking for some help.

    My M3 came without parking sensors - I'm used to them from the cramped UK and would like to retrofit them back on to the car. My Dealer tells me that they can't do this but I'm intrigued that it isn't possible.


    Can someone knowledgeable tell me why this isn't possible?

    I did a search on parking sensors but nothing showed up.
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    CRKrieger

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    Ebay has kits for about $30. You can even get a license plate frame model that involves no additional holes in your car (although you may need to make a hidden one to run a wire or two). OTOH, this isn't "the cramped UK". This is the wide open spaces of the US of A. You might not really need them. ;)

    bradtipp guest

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    I've seen the kits, but what I don't understand is why i just can't order all the parts and have the dealer drill the holes and kit the original items in the front and rear bumpers. I can have third parties do it with the kits....

    Maybe I'm being too fussy :)... Anyway still hoping someone can tell me why the original parts can't be retrofitted.
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    tiFreak

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    I'm thinking they probably can, they just don't feel like it. Although I'm not sure how tied into the main computers and harnesses the sensors are so it may actually be way more of a headache than it's worth
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    MGarrison

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    Ya, I'd think the likely issue is the wiring and electronics. Given attempts to maximize profit margins, I wouldn't be surprised that something like that has various requisite circuits, electronics, wiring, etc. that integrate it into the car, and that it's not something like, ok, all the wiring and everything is the same for all U.S. cars, and all that you have to do is plug the sensors into a couple of dangling harness connectors, and voila', you have pdc. I could be wrong though, I don't know the car specifics; hey, why not be a pioneer - research the wiring harness, and see if you have a hookup for the sensor. Or ask folks who might be picking one apart... Dinan, for instance.

    Btw, welcome to the club, & the forums! Nice car, too!
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    CRKrieger

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    Third parties are not going to warranty the rest of your car's electronics. If they hack into the wrong wire for supply voltage, you could have some serious issues, but chances are you will have already signed off on their negligent installation.
    I think you are. The dealer has several considerations here including how much time it will take (Are you willing to pay $2000 or more to do this?), warranty concerns (If they screw it up, will BMW pay for future warranty claims?), and pure contractual issues (It's possible that BMW will not allow them to do this under their franchise agreement.).

    Here's something else. Let's say that the OEM control units have a general problem that does something really nasty - like starts a fire in the car. BMW will diligently send out recall notices to those whose cars have them. Guess what. You're not on the list. The dealer doesn't keep records on cars where they added accessories. Your car burns to the ground. Do you have a claim? Against whom? BMW didn't inform you because you weren't supposed to have that unit in your car. Your dealer is under no obligation to track your unique modification and report it to BMW nor to inform you of the recall. As a lawyer (and I am), I'd say you're screwed. Now, if your aftermarket unit does the same thing, you'd at least have a colorable claim against the unit manufacturer.

    I'm not a professional mechanic (but I stayed in a Holiday Inn Express in Zurich last month!). In your position, I'd install the license plate thingy and let it go at that.

    bradtipp guest

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    Thanks for that - I'll have to get used to the litigious nature of things here and the implications that imposes.. Thanks for taking the time to reply.

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