Remember when A-pillar gauge pods were all the rage? Yup, I had one in my Integra when I was about twenty-three. While I never really liked it there, it was a great place for that much needed oil pressure gauge. You never know, it’s always a good idea to keep your eye on the oil pressure; that oil pump can go at any moment, especially on a Honda engine with 40,000 miles on the clock. [obv sarcasm]
Like a fine mechanical timepiece, there is much romanticism about pure analog gauges. There is some unadulterated joy about watching multiple gauges move linearly with the speed and sound of the engine. The world has indeed gone digital, however, and most of the time that’s a good thing.
The above is a P3Cars vent integrated digital interface (vidi) intended for late-model BMWs, from our friends at Turner Motorsport. The small display, which occupies half of an air vent, is capable of displaying information which in the past would require a triple pillar gauge-pod, several quarter-DIN sized gizmos, and a windshield mounted gadget.
Utilizing the OBD-2 port, the Vidi is cable of displaying the intake air temp, exhaust gas temp, coolant temp, boost/vacuum, ignition timing, throttle position, uncorrected speed, RPM, battery voltage. It also functions as a fault code reader and clearing tool too. Analog inputs allow for boost pressure reading.
And, there is more. Remember the original G-Tech? This has that too, sort of. The display will show your acceleration times, difference in which you can use to justify the purchase of that cold-air intake. There is even a shift-light!
To finish up the OEM look, which was desperately lacking in any kind of pillar-pod, the display matches OEM dash illumination and intensity. Prices start at around $400, which isn’t cheap given that a typical scan gauge can be had for less than $200. But with the Vidi you get OEM-like fit and finish and several other features not available from typical scan gauges, which to me justifies the price. And it’s available only from Turner Motorsport.
Having owned several BMWs, I have had experience with some TMS parts. Each time I found them to some of the best of the after-market, which tends to be filled with crap. They also have a ton of original parts, parts they manufacture and design themselves, and perform service for local clients. This little Vidi tool seems just downright cool for those of us who are slightly OCD about our cars. I wish I had it on my Integra.
Note: This isn’t advertising, this is just a damn cool product. I have three good friends with late model M3s (neither has kids, coincidence?), so perhaps I’ll be able to get some hands-on time with this little tool.