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Car Czar of Death
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Black box on wheels: It’s certainly not surprising that sophisticated electronics would be incorporated into aftermarket products. Davis Instruments’ carchip package consists of a tiny “black box” data logger, software on a CD, a power adapter and connecting cable to access your cars OBD-II data and later download to your PC. The company’s been involved with “in vehicle monitoring for the last eight years, mostly for (trucking) fleets,” according to spokesman Russ Heilig. The rationale for expanding it to cars and private use we asked? “We knew the data was available and it could be used as a diagnostic tool,” he answered. “It has two primary functions, to show trouble codes and routine data logging. If you have an intermittent problem it gives you a snapshot of where and how it occurred.”

The standard carchip ($139) records 75 hours of trip details, including time, date and distance of each trip, your speed every five seconds, hard accelerations and decelerations, engine trouble codes and more. The carchipEX (which won SEMA’s Best Engineered New Product Award) upgrades the above to 300 hours and can be programmed to measure up to four engine parameters every five to 60 seconds. Users can choose from 23 parameters, including such esoterica as intake manifold pressure, timing advance and short- or long-term fuel trim. Davis is “definitely looking for distributors,” said Heilig. “We’ve had good response; some people say they can’t believe we did it and some say it’s the greatest product they’ve ever seen.”www.davisnet.com

[ 11-11-2002, 03:16 AM: Message edited by: CTZX3 ]
 
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