Operating data in the vehicle
Control units process data in order to operate the vehicle. This includes, for example:
- Vehicle status information (e.g. speed, deceleration, lateral acceleration, wheel revolution speed, whether the seat belts are fastened),
- Environmental conditions (e.g. temperature, rain sensor, distance sensor).
These data are generally temporary; they are not stored after the vehicle is no longer in operation and are only processed in the vehicle itself. Control units often have data storage units (including the vehicle keys). These are used to temporarily or permanently document information about the vehicle status, component stress, maintenance requirements and technical events and errors.
Depending on selected equipment, the following information is stored:
- Operating conditions of system components (e.g. fill level, tyre pressure, battery status),
- Disruptions and defects in key system components (e.g. lights, brakes),
- System responses in special driving situations (e.g. deployment of airbags, use of stability control systems),
- Information about vehicle-damaging events,
- For electric vehicles, the state of charge of the high-voltage battery, estimated range.
In special cases (e.g. when the vehicle has detected a malfunction), it may be necessary to store data that would otherwise only be temporary.
When you use services (e.g. repair services, maintenance work), it may, where required, be necessary to read and use the stored operating data together with the vehicle identification number. The data may be read from the vehicle by an employee of the service network (e.g. workshops, manufacturer) or third parties (e.g. breakdown service centres). The same applies for warranty cases and quality assurance measures.
The readout is generally carried out via the statutorily prescribed connection for on-board diagnostics (OBD). The operating data that is read out documents the technical conditions of the vehicle or individual components to help with the error diagnosis, compliance with maintenance obligations and quality improvement. These data, especially information about component stress, technical events, operating errors and other errors are sent together with the vehicle identification number to the manufacturer, if necessary. The manufacturer is also subject to product liability. The manufacturer also uses operating data from the vehicle for recalls. These data may also be used to review warranty and guarantee claims by customers.
Error storage units in the vehicle can be reset by a service centre as part of repair or service work or at your request.