Bronco ForScan Thread

loubif

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@Airborne_Ape, good to have you on the site. I've been doing some research into ForScan for my own Focus RS as to the different options that have been left "off" by Ford and it seems really interesting like global windows so as to roll up and down my windows with the key fob upon locking or unlocking my vehicle, this was an option not turned on from the factory for my car...many more come to mind, thanks again for joining us as ForScan will provide a wealth of knowledge!!!



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Airborne_Ape

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Can you offer a few examples here. If window or folding mirror control is simply a digital on/off setting, why would Ford not ship the vehicle with everything enabled?

Grab a coffee, this will be a long read.

Consumers typically purchase vehicles from a dealership rather than custom ordering one from a manufacturer (which is illegal in many states). Auto manufacturers must package options and features together into sub categories which appease to a wide variety of personal subjectivity to keep up with the pressures of manufacturing and logistics. Dealerships then just sell all the unwanted included extras after the fact. The National Automobile Dealership Association is fighting Tesla in many states to prevent consumers from having the opportunity to order anything factory direct from any automotive manufacturer. After all, a dealership’s primary source of revenue comes from selling the financial products which back a lease or sale of a vehicle. If consumers had the choice of custom ordering exactly what they want from the factory, it would benefit consumers, in this case, boost the Ford Motor Corporations profits, and would likely also place tens of thousands of Americans out of work. I can’t argue for or against factory ordering because it is such a convoluted disaster decades in the making. Tesla’s factory-direct business model isn’t so great, but I believe dealerships are doing themselves a genuine disservice by lobbying against consumer choice.

At this time, consumers are forced to pick and choose generalized trim levels and equipment packages. You're not going to be able to select everything you want and The National Automobile Dealership Association is hard at work, sending lobbyists to courts to make sure nothing changes because there’s been no competition to sway consumer demand other than from Tesla.

In this thread (and all ForScan related threads), users outline ways which Ford owners can work around this institutionalized nonsense to install / remove / enable / disable individual factory level options at their own convenience.

F
rom a development and cost standpoint, you have to respect the amount of engineering which goes into the development of any single onboard system. The new Land Rover Defender has 85 individual ECU’s inside of it which is very impressive and commands appreciation. The Bronco is no Land Rover, but the principle of ‘automate everything’ is a common direction the industry is going. Each ECU requires certification form groups like the IEEE, FCC, Department of Transportation, regional compliance bodies like the EU and so on. The software in each ECU requires licensing, contracts and development support from outside manufactures such as Ford’s agreement with Continental (aka Motorola). It just makes sense to develop one single door module compatible across 30 vehicles rather then develop 30 different door modules for 30 different vehicles.

Outside example:

The Apple watch has four sub models: Nike, Hermes, Edition, Sport. There isn’t four different logic boards in each of these. Each variation has all the watch faces stored in the operating system, but the firmware of each model dictates what is available to the end user. Automotive ECU’s and many other consumer products operate the same way. Luckily for us, we have access to dealership level calibration tools from auto manufactures, whereas accessing Apple’s support utilities is insane. I cherish right to repair legislation and you should too.

Of course this is nothing new. Whatever you drive right now, I can guarantee you that if you look at your owners manual you’ll see a bunch of empty and not assigned / spare slots in your fuse panel, but if you look at the panel itself you’ll see a blank fuse in place. Ford isn’t going to state in the owners manual that the F150 has a fuse for 3 row power folding seats, but that doesn’t mean the circuit isn’t there. The logic in the F150 is the same as the Edge, Flex, Super Duty, Explorer, Fusion ect...


So here’s a few examples which apply in principle to all Ford models:

1) Adding or removing features not intended for your specific model:

1a)

My 500a package lariat has push button start, which means auto-stop-start is enabled by default to boost their MPG rating for better sales. Because of the run time and cycling of the alternator / strain placed on the battery charging system, Ford made their factory kicker subwoofer optional only for models with barrel ignition systems. Ford had no way of knowing I planned to disable the auto stop start feature the day I bought my truck (which I did), but the fact remained that the factory subwoofer was unavailable as an option for all 300a to 501a trim levels with an EcoBoost engine. (502a + packages had different Sony sound system).

Because I have all of the systems required including the most to the factory wiring, it just took a few minutes and few mouse clicks to install a factory sub, which I posted a quick video outlining here.

2) Enabling features Ford deliberately removed:

2a)

Adding some features may be as simple as enabling a rollbacked decision made halfway through a production cycle. A great example is the tailgate ajar waring. Starting in 2016 F150’s, Ford chose to include a new feature that showed the driver when their tailgate is open. The thing was, Ford forgot about all the people which deliberately take their tailgates off and the general issue of bed flex. As soon as a few owners started complaining about the tailgate ajar waring (door open chime while driving), Ford chose to edit the module and publish an SSM rather than issue a recall. Essentially, when customers brought in their trucks for periodic maintenance like oil changes, dealership technicians applied a correction with Ford’s IDS software and closed the circuit in the logic. But what about those of us who like the tailgate open warning? What about those of us who like the visual warning on the dash and turned off the audible door open alert? or those of us who think we can install our own improved tailgate door switch? Well, that’s been discussed and accomplished in this thread already.

This must translate well for some of you Bronco enthusiasts, because I’m sure someone will drive around with some door(s) off eventually and would rather not listen to door open chimes all day long.

2b)

In 2018 F150’s Ford took away colored ambient lighting options but used some the same wiring looms and ECU’s from left over production of the 2017 model. This meant that even though ambient lighting was never an option for 2018 the only thing that stood in the way of Ford owners from adding beloved ambient lighting and syncing it with their factory infotainment system, was a few mouse clicks with IDS or ForScan and figuring out the part numbers from Tasca. There is a full writeup on that process here.

3) Enabling features from a completely different vehicle:

3a) Enable the Bronco boot screen in any Ford currently on the road right now.

3b) The window modules in a two door sedan have an the ability operate remotely from the key Fob. For brand consistency, this feature is only found in models with two doors because rear door modules don't exist. It would look silly to only have the ability to change the position of 2/4 windows remotely right? Well, you can be the judge, because users know which data to copy from a mustang to enable the feature on nearly everything else.

3c) Lincolns have a welcoming feature where the mirrors will automatically fold or unfold depending on which lock button is pressed on the key remote. So, if Ford uses the same ECU’s on everything, can we add the same functionality to a SuperDuty, F150, Fusion, Bronco or other model? Yes! It's practically the first non-option everyone enables.

There’s too much to list here. My point is, if this interest you in the slightest, it will be best to go read the last 2000 pages in this F150 thread.

4) Enabling features because of a cost barrier.

4a)

Most Ford vehicles feature the best & safest headlights only in top end models. I can almost guarantee the Bronco will be no different. LED’s in the F150, projectors in the Ranger, you get the idea. I didn’t want the features found in higher trim levels. Personally, I disliked the technology package Ford offered. But to get factory LED headlights I had to choose it at the time. So I chose to buy a truck with factory halogen headlights and instead grabbed a used set of OEM LED headlights and retrofit them into my 500a package following factory wringing and programming out of a Platinum equivalent. Ryan has a great write up on that here.

I really want to highlight that it’s almost always cost and time effective to just buy the options you want from your sales person in the first place, but there are still lots of useful scenarios out there you can learn from and apply to your new Bronco purchase when the time comes. I only listed a few, but there are hundreds of others.

In summary, while you’re right that the Bronco doesn’t exist yet, what I’m trying to convey here is that you can frame a better idea what you want by evaluating every other Ford currently in the market. There likely won’t be much to stop anyone here from adding Mustang remote operating windows, F150 Sync connect, Lincoln power-fold-upon-entry mirrors, Explorer LED headlights, Police interceptor dark car mode, remote start with lights offs, custom TPMS and tire size settings, European Fog Lights as DRL’s configurations and much more from the comfort of their own driveway.

Having the ability to work on my vehicle is ultimately why I bought it instead of the GMC Sierra I liked more at the time. The day Ford’s Service mimics Apple, is the day I stop purchasing their vehicles.
 
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Airborne_Ape

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Here's a write up detailing how to add a heated steering wheel to a Ford vehicle which didn't ship with one or have the option to be configured with one from the factory. Again, examples of other parts exist for many different Ford vehicles, but I hope this makes you a bit more excited about what could be modified in your Bronco and how.
 

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Very cool. I am reminded a little of what I've done with my 09 vette with making the computers let me have fog lights on all the time (instead of them turning off when the high beams are on) and switching the body control module to USA mode so that I can turn off the automatic headlights (that ability is disabled for Canadian cars). I've also blocked the skip shift (fuel economy thing that forces you to shift 1-4 when accelerating slowly) and swapped my seats out but convinced the computer that the stock side airbags are still there to get rid of the light. With this you don't have to mess with resistors to trick the computer though! Love the level of control you can get here.
 
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An anonymous Ford owner has brought this to my attention. By exploring the current sync 3.4 bluetooth naming convention it's been discovered that the smaller Ford Bronco will be called the Bronco Maverick and both Bronco's will use the same startup screen. Again this is something Ford has published and hidden in plain sight in every new Ford currently being sold. If you drive a new Ranger for example, it's not too hard to use Ford's utilities to enable the bluetooth device name 'Bronco Maverick' instead of 'Ranger' in Sync. These are preassigned terms Ford put in the Sync system and has been discovered using Ford's dealership tools at a dealership, it's not my fault they put all of this in the field LOL.
 
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Stampede.Offroad

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An anonymous Ford owner has brought this to my attention. By exploring the current sync 3.4 bluetooth naming convention it's been discovered that the smaller Ford Bronco will be called the Bronco Maverick and both Bronco's will use the same startup screen. Again this is something Ford has published and hidden in plain sight in every new Ford currently being sold. If you drive a new Ranger for example, it's not too hard to use Ford's utilities to enable the bluetooth device name 'Bronco Maverick' instead of 'Ranger' in Sync. These are preassigned terms Ford put in the Sync system and has been discovered using Ford's dealership tools at a dealership, it's not my fault they put all of this in the field LOL.
This kind of thing makes me wish I currently had a newish Ford to tinker around with and try to dig up more of these hidden in plain sight details.
 

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An anonymous Ford owner has brought this to my attention. By exploring the current sync 3.4 bluetooth naming convention it's been discovered that the smaller Ford Bronco will be called the Bronco Maverick and both Bronco's will use the same startup screen. Again this is something Ford has published and hidden in plain sight in every new Ford currently being sold. If you drive a new Ranger for example, it's not too hard to use Ford's utilities to enable the bluetooth device name 'Bronco Maverick' instead of 'Ranger' in Sync. These are preassigned terms Ford put in the Sync system and has been discovered using Ford's dealership tools at a dealership, it's not my fault they put all of this in the field LOL.
So my buddy at Ford informed me a while back that “baby bronco” has been internally called Maverick and that may not be the official name.
 

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So we just announced some significant upgrades with Sync 4, is it safe to assume all this will still apply (I don't work on this tech side stuff)
 
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Airborne_Ape

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So we just announced some significant upgrades with Sync 4, is it safe to assume all this will still apply (I don't work on this tech side stuff)
It's never safe to assume anything.

Between My Ford Touch and Sync 3, most of the HEX values in the memory addresses found in the APIM remained identical. Across Sync 3.0, 3.2, 3.3 and the complete refreshed UI found in Sync 3.4 (which looks identical to Sync 4), the memory addresses all remained the same. Assuming Sync 4 is built on the foundation of Sync 3.4, yes this will apply. If Ford went out of their way to unnecessarily pour development resources and restructure Sync 4 from the ground up, it may not translate, but even in that case it should. similar to how My Ford Touch & Sync 3 remained the same.

The question then becomes, do I think Ford completely re engineered Sync 3? and the answer is no. I suspect Ford just stuffed in a new PCB into the APIM (with updated wireless radios and processor) to support high throughput applications like CarPlay, used Sync 3.4 as a the OS and through the magic of marketing and text edit decided to call it Sync 4. Sync 3 has seen 3 major hardware revisions in the last few years, all unannounced. If you pick apart the coding on the Sync 3.2, the features like wireless cloud computing Ford just announced in Sync 4 are already baked into those older modules found in current gen Ford Rangers, Fusions, Explorer and so on. I mean, thanks for announcing it, but Ford stuffed those features into all these current gen cars already and just turned it off by default.

Long story short. yes I assume this applies to Sync 4, I can't see why it wouldn't given that the Bronco Boot animations are already built into Sync 3 on my 2017 F150. I'm willing to bet any 2011 Ford owner can upgrade to Sync 4 with an assembly swap (MY Ford Touch) or 2016 Ford owners will just need an APIM swap. I plan on putting Sync 4 in my 2017 F150 as soon as I find one at a salvage yard which is probably 2 years away.

Note: Anyone here who buys a Bronco (or any Ford) without a Sync system can retrofit one in later, but in most cases it's just as if not more expensive as ordering the correct package from the dealership in the first place and it can be a brutal long task.

Order your Bronco how you want it and listen to your sales person; that's my advice.
 
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Here are the current mappings of Sync 3.3 and what you can expect to have the ability to toggle on and off in your Bronco with the use of a laptop and software like IDS or ForScan.
 

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I was surprised years ago, after removing the door trim panels on our old Geo Storm while fixing a window issue, to find power door lock actuators. Even though the vehicle did not have that feature. Maybe it was less costly just to install them as part of the assembly? I planned to wire them up to a Radio Shack switch, but never got around to it, and time took it's tool no longer have the vehicle. But yeah some vehicles have computer or mechanical options waiting to be enabled by some creative owners.
 
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I was surprised years ago, after removing the door trim panels on our old Geo Storm while fixing a window issue, to find power door lock actuators. Even though the vehicle did not have that feature.
That's pretty hilarious, even Ford isn't that wasteful.

They'll usually have different versions of jumpers or harnesses and the physical parts will be replaced with a blank plug. The trailer brake control module is a great example. Every F150, Expedition, Super Duty, ect... has the wiring harness already in place but vehicles without the option just have a plastic plug at the end of the harness. All Ford owners have to do, and Bronco's should be no different, is plug in the switch then enable it in the computer with a few mouse clicks in ForScan or IDS.
 
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I'd bet Ford has stock pictures of the Bronco and Baby Bronco hiding in plain sight in every new Ford vehicle being sold today. I mean the bronco boot animation is clearly already there so if the new Explorer is built into the remote climate control startup visualizations, other cars must be there just waiting for someone to try some different as built data to uncover. The only thing stopping me from looking is that I did not update my APIM firmware when I installed the Sync 3.4 update in my 2017 F150.

This photo was taken in a 2016 F150 running Sync 3 V3.4 with the latest APIM firmware updates.
(Credit goes to Livnitup).

explorer.jpg
 
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I'd bet Ford has stock pictures of the Bronco and Baby Bronco hiding in plain sight in every new Ford vehicle being sold today. I mean the bronco boot animation is clearly already there so if the new Explorer is built into the remote climate control startup visualizations, other cars must be there just waiting for someone to try some different as built data to uncover. The only thing stopping me from looking is that I did not update my APIM firmware when I installed the Sync 3.4 update in my 2017 F150.

This photo was taken in a 2016 F150 running Sync 3 V3.4 with the latest APIM firmware updates.
(Credit goes to Livnitup).

explorer.jpg
Hopefully there’s someone out there with the latest SYNC willing to dive into this for us
 



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