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VolvoTech CFE Canbus feature extender review.

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Old Sep 6th, 2013, 18:48   #1
A lex
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Default VolvoTech CFE Canbus feature extender review.

Hi all,

I have recently purchased one of these:

http://www.volvotech.eu/Function-Extender/cfe?filter=1

Its a VolvoTech Canbus feature extender - what's that you say......?

Well, its a trick little box that connects to the onboard computers and allows you program in some neat features common in newer cars (like the XC60 for example), but otherwise missing from the XC90.

It can connect via the OBD port (with a special slimline connector) or via the RTi system in the rear of the car, depending on what options your 90 is specced with. I plumped for the OBD connector, as it offers the most painless and quickest install option.

Delivery from Volvotech took about 10 days, but it did warn on the website that they were on holidays, so the wait was justified.

The unit itself is very sturdy and looks well made, about the size of a wallet with a serial connector on one end, and a USB input on the other.

To program the device, you need to download the desktop Sw from the Volvotech website and then download the latest Fw. They seem to release new Fw quite regularly, fixing bugs and offering new functionalities all the time.

The device will fit various Volvo models from over the years, and will offer different options dependant on your car - its neccessary to input your VIN so that the device knows what it can program.

I have chosen the following, (over what you can normally do on a '90):

-Global window opening from the key fob
-Global window closing from the key fob
-Extra courtesy lighting from the reverse lights
-Mirror dipping on reverse
-Remote diesel heater start from keyfob
-Dial sweep on ignition on
-Mirror auto-fold on door lock/unlock
-Extra DIM info, including:
--Fuel remaining in L
--Speed in kph and mph
--Engine revs, coolant temp, cabin temp
--0 to 60 speed logger

So as you can see, it can do quite a lot. Some more gimmicky than others!

The mirror dip and extra speed info is worth its weight in gold to me. The mirror fold is also a useful thing to have.

I had one small problem with the Fw, meaning that my drivers window became unresponsive after global open, but a quick email to Volvotech and I had an updated (unreleased) Fw in my inbox 10mins later with the bug fix.

Its not exactly cheap, but it brings some great added functionality to the car, the customer support is top notch, its easy to install and its got a certain 'geek factor'

I hope the above can be of use to someone

Some quick photos:

Device



Example of desktop Sw config. page



Extra DIM functions



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Old Sep 7th, 2013, 08:48   #2
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I have been looking at these as well. Think you may have convinced me to buy. Roll on next pay day!!
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Old Sep 7th, 2013, 09:53   #3
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looks fun but expensive

cant do any of this in VIDA?
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Old Sep 7th, 2013, 10:01   #4
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cant do any of this in VIDA?
Good question, can any of this be done using VIDA/DICE ?
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Old Sep 7th, 2013, 10:02   #5
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AFAIK.....no

I have VIDA/DiCE and havent seen any of these functions.
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Old Sep 7th, 2013, 10:12   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadeyman View Post
Good question, can any of this be done using VIDA/DICE ?
No
mike
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Old Sep 7th, 2013, 10:16   #7
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been looking at these myself thanks for buying one Alex, not sure i can justify the price to what it can do at the moment.
if there are any add ons from the company do you get the updates as and when free
mike
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Old Sep 7th, 2013, 10:19   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by outnumbered View Post
been looking at these myself thanks for buying one Alex, not sure i can justify the price to what it can do at the moment.
if there are any add ons from the company do you get the updates as and when.
mike
Updates come 'as and when', but looking at the change logs, they seem pretty frequent.

Its a Dutch company and they have an open thread on the Dutch Volvo forums that is 100s of pages long. Members who have the device are invited to provide requests and feedback etc, and then they go and work on it.

So in that respect, they are extremely open to ideas etc.

It is expensive, but when you start to consider the amount of work that goes in to these, I can see how it ends up costing so much. The desktop software is very polished, the device itself looks extremely well made and I think they are hand-built to order too.
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Old Sep 7th, 2013, 10:36   #9
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does the box stay plugged into the OBD port when in use, or just used as a 'loader' that can be disconnected?
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Old Sep 7th, 2013, 10:37   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by racingclub View Post
does the box stay plugged into the OBD port when in use, or just used as a 'loader' that can be disconnected?
It needs to stay plugged in. They offer a slimline OBD connector that allows you to install it invisibly and keep the access door closed.

You can also connect via the AEM and RTi I belive, but you would need to double check on the website.

All the user and installation manuals are available to download if you are curious.
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