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Old 25th January 2021, 14:13   #1
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Default The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

I drive all new cars that are launched in India and it's interesting to see the different manufacturer approaches to the 80 / 120 kmph speed warnings. Some do it well, some do it classy, some do it subtle, some do it effective...but the absolute WORST implementation is by BMW.

- BMW's 80 kmph warning chime is the loudest I have heard in any brand's cars. But that's not my real complaint. The actual problem is that, along with the 80 kmph gong, the audio system's volume also dips. Hence, if you are on an open road where your speed continuously varies between 70 - 90 kmph, you will go absolutely mad! Even if you go below 80 and cross it 10 times a minute, those 10 times, you'll hear a loud warning & your music volume will drop for a couple of seconds .

It is enough to drive you insane. There are better ways to warn drivers, as other OEMs are clearly doing.

- BMW's 120 kmph warning goes on continuously, and is loud enough to give you a headache. Worst still, at 120 kmph, the music volume remains permanently lowered !

BMW, please learn from your luxury car competitors or even mass market brands. Remember, the objective is to warn, not frustrate. Enthusiasts who own a current-gen BMW might get these alerts removed from a tuner. But the other 99% of BMW owners are going to have to live with this terribly frustrating behaviour.

Last edited by GTO : 25th January 2021 at 14:17.
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Old 25th January 2021, 14:21   #2
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Default re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

What's the point in those BHP, Torque and 0-100 kmph figures if you don't get to test it once in a while. Wow! The Music volume stays down as the DIN of the warning increases: that's really high tech annoyance indeed! A few more lakhs as a paid option and get the car not to sound the warning.
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Old 25th January 2021, 14:31   #3
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Default re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
BMW's 80 kmph warning chime is the loudest I have heard in any brand's cars.
Isnt there a way this can this can be coded out?

Interested for Hyundai Cars also.
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Old 25th January 2021, 15:20   #4
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Default re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

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Originally Posted by AbhiJ View Post
Isnt there a way this can this can be coded out?
Interested for Hyundai Cars also.
I have absolutely no issues with speed warning in my Hyundai, since I have turned it off. Hope you can do that as well.
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Old 25th January 2021, 16:11   #5
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Default re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

I am surprised at this sloppy programming. They should have factored in scenarios like overtaking. Perhaps a sensible solution would be to trigger off the alarm after a continuous over the limit speed for say 3-5 seconds.

Agree with the audio dipping though. I know people who love to blast their music on full volume.

One possible solution could be to calibrate the system (I dont know if it's possible to calibrate) and set the units as miles instead of KM.
80 mph = 128 kmph

Last edited by RedTerrano : 25th January 2021 at 16:13.
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Old 25th January 2021, 23:17   #6
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Default re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

I believe Mercedes have the same issue. Preowned is the way, I guess!
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Old 26th January 2021, 15:54   #7
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Default re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
I drive all new cars that are launched in India and it's interesting to see the different manufacturer approaches to the 80 / 120 kmph speed warnings. Some do it well, some do it classy, some do it subtle, some do it effective...but the absolute WORST implementation is by BMW.

BMW, please learn from your luxury car competitors or even mass market brands. Remember, the objective is to warn, not frustrate. Enthusiasts who own a current-gen BMW might get these alerts removed from a tuner. But the other 99% of BMW owners are going to have to live with this terribly frustrating behaviour.
The issue with this is its a country specific implementation and these cars are highly integrated when it comes to electronics, and the people who implement it are lazy AF and dont want to put too much effort. Hence, these German cars have audible chimes for anything going wrong in a car, and for the speed alert, they copied this in the software and added two more warnings for the 80 and 120kmph warning. But what they missed to think is that these speed warnings do not need so much of escalation like dulling the music system, blanking out the MID and so on compared to a warning/error from some other system in the car. Hence, it is a complete annoyance and thankfully can be coded off which again is due to the way these systems are implemented.

Japs are the other way round. Their instrument cluster has its own beeper and they used this for the speed warning. Since its not integrated with the audio system, you can turn up the volume slightly and forget about the beeps The 80kmph warning in my Crysta is on the louder side, but the 120 is very mellow and only heard when the audio system is off. But I am not sure if turning it off is as easy as that on a German car.

Different regions, different thought process and completely different methods of implementation. But whoever came up with this legislation must be made to sit in a room with this beeper for a day. Why I say so is because the government itself is increasing speed limits on highways and expressways. In that case, how can I use my current car once the speed limit on an expressway is made 120 or slightly higher?
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Old 26th January 2021, 18:17   #8
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Default re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
BMW's 80 kmph warning chime is the loudest I have heard in any brand's cars. But that's not my real complaint. The actual problem is that, along with the 80 kmph gong, the audio system's volume also dips. Hence, if you are on an open road where your speed continuously varies between 70 - 90 kmph, you will go absolutely mad! Even if you go below 80 and cross it 10 times a minute, those 10 times, you'll hear a loud warning & your music volume will drop for a couple of seconds .

BMW's 120 kmph warning goes on continuously, and is loud enough to give you a headache. Worst still, at 120 kmph, the music volume remains permanently lowered !
Looks like it really got to you! Which BMW car were you testing anyway?

Frankly for me/us, we have more or less tuned it out even with the music off (which it is regularly in Sport mode just to hear that growling engine & turbo whistle). With the music on, it can be readily ignored. However, the 80 km/hr gong is super irritating though and makes me reflexively look for warning signs on the MID.

What I've done is deactivated the speed-linked volume and turned down the 'gong' as much as possible. Helped a lot in my opinion.
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Last edited by itwasntme : 26th January 2021 at 18:30.
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Old 26th January 2021, 19:00   #9
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Default re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

Quote:
Originally Posted by AbhiJ View Post
Isnt there a way this can this can be coded out?
Sure can. Any tuner will do it.

Just to clarify:

80 kmph:

Nice cars - A subtle chime with a warning on the MID

BMW - LOUD chime, with the music volume dropping momentarily

120 kmph:

Nice cars - A subtle, classy continuous beep. It's there, you can hear it, but it's bearable.

BMW - LOUD continuous beeping + music volume permanently lowered .

Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmat View Post
I believe Mercedes have the same issue. Preowned is the way, I guess!
No man, it's not as bad in Mercedes. BMW's is just tear-your-hair-apart frustrating .

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Originally Posted by itwasntme View Post
Looks like it really got to you! Which BMW car were you testing anyway?
320d LWB.

Quote:
What I've done is deactivated the speed-linked volume and turned down the 'gong' as much as possible. Helped a lot in my opinion.
Thanks for the tip!
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Old 26th January 2021, 19:11   #10
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Default re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

BMW has merely copied Mercedes. If you remember way back last year I mentioned this in my GLC review:

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The best way to enjoy the GLC is to cruise and waft along on the highway enjoying the refinement, but it has to be below 120 km/h, as above that, you will go completely bonkers with the speed warning. All cars now have the speed warning and all have different implementations. But Mercedes has taken things a bit too far IMO. You're listening to music and cruising on the highway when you cross 80 km/h and the music suddenly mutes and there is a warning chime, after which, the music starts again. After a few seconds, this repeats and every few seconds the music will mute, the warning will chime and music will play again. You then speed up a little and cross 120 km/h. Now the music mutes permanently and all you hear is the chime. In every other car, you can listen to music with the warning chime going off but Mercedes will ensure you hear the chime and not ignore it by playing music. I know this is a safety norm but nowhere does it say that the audio system needs to be muted when there is a warning chime.
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Old 26th January 2021, 21:05   #11
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Default re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

Anecdotally, it seems some batches of CBUs (not specifically BMW) do not have this 80/120 warning. How is this possible? I thought this was mandatory?
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Old 26th January 2021, 21:15   #12
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Default re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

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Originally Posted by itwasntme View Post
Anecdotally, it seems some batches of CBUs (not specifically BMW) do not have this 80/120 warning. How is this possible? I thought this was mandatory?
My guess is that whatever CBU products are imported in that 2500 per year quota that does not require homologation, will not have this. That exemption from homologation requirements can be used to skip this.

All other CBUs imported but outside that quota still require homologation, and they will need these alarms.

This is my guess. I could be wrong though.
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Old 26th January 2021, 21:29   #13
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Default re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

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My guess is that whatever CBU products are imported in that 2500 per year quota that does not require homologation, will not have this. That exemption from homologation requirements can be used to skip this.
You could be right. Think I read it in a Karoq review.
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Old 27th January 2021, 08:52   #14
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Default Re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

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I believe Mercedes have the same issue. Preowned is the way, I guess!
Yes, particularly in the facelift GLC. A cousin of mine wanted to buy himself a luxury vehicle after his startup took off well, he being not an enthusiast took me along with him to test drive the GLC. The speed warning in that vehicle is outright crappy, the music pauses, yes it PAUSES! the moment you cross 80 and after 120 you can't hear anything apart from the loud chime.

Guess what? The guy saved himself 20lacs+ and got a Tiguan Allspace as it's a CBU without the stupid warning and he believes it's a very premium car and only thing missing in it is the brand pull of the luxury brands.
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Old 27th January 2021, 08:54   #15
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Default Re: The 80 & 120 kmph speed alert system | Brands that implemented it poorly

I wonder if this is a potential safety hazard as drivers try not to slow down below 81 Kmph just to avoid the irritation.
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