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G4+ Thunder and oem CAN system


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I have a BMW 540 from 1999 and i'm looking into what options I have regarding a standalone. The thunder seems like a perfect fit with dual knock, vanos control etc given it is a V8. But is it possible to maintain the cars creature comfort and security features that is communicating over CAN? instrument culster, climate control, abs and airbag are some of the bare minimum of CAN modules that needs to be in working order. How would you approach this?

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Hi wyldcard,

To keep the CAN communication going to the other devices we need to replicate what the factory ECU does on the CAN bus. To do this we need to know the layout of the CAN data. Reverse engineering is the usual way to go about getting this data, but it can be time consuming and some specialist tools are required.

In our ECU's firmware we have support for the BMW Mini R53 CAN bus. Although this is not the same model as your vehicle there is a good chance that some of the CAN data is in common. We have had people use the Mini CAN mode on an E46. However how much is in common is an unknown until it is tried.

An alternative way to approach this is by doing a piggyback install. This is where the factory ECU and the Link ECU share sensors, and the Link ECU controls the outputs (ign, injection, fuel pump, e-throttle, etc).

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