Have a BMW, Mini or Rolls Royce with the ConnectedDrive feature parked in your driveway? Maybe all three? Well, it turns out there was a bug that allowed ne’er-do-wells to manipulate it — entirely wirelessly. According to Reuters , by simulating a fake phone network researchers at German outfit ADAC (essentially Deutschland’s AAA) were able to gain access to systems governed by the platform’s SIM card by spoofing a cell tower. They’ve even put together a video describing the gap in security which you can check out after the break — if you speak German. While the vulnerabilities didn’t include anything related to steering, acceleration or braking, the ConnectedDrive does have access to traffic information, air conditioning and… door locks.
1. As a car they have never been cheap to buy and have only gotten more expensive to maintain, so failure number one was as maintenance became a non-driver option (hint: removing the dip stick!) 2. iDrive and the whole let’s move the knobs around in every model to screw with anyone who might want to buy a second BMW. I detest iDrive and my BMW purchasing days are over as long as BMW keeps selling cars with iDrive. Transitioning from the cockpit of an E46 to any newer model BMW is a nightmare. There are a few minor improvements (such as a permanent dashboard clock and temperature gauge) but overall it has been a huge step backwards. Even the cruise control is less intuitive. I had a loaner E92 series while my E46 was in the shop for a week. At the end of the week, I was gradually getting the hang of the setup (except for the forenamed iDrive POS) and was starting to have some positive feelings about the loaner car when I returned it. As soon as I sat down in my familiar E46, I completely forgot about any positives of the E92 and beamed a smile of contentment for being back in my E46. BMW needs to take note of this. 3. The F**king electronics of the Borg. The most dreaded words to hear from a BMW technician “…we need to replace one of the electronic modules…” It is impossible to have an electronic component serviced at a good third party shop and everything is electronic now. Even worse a BMW electrical problem is at least a $ 500 (more like a kilobuck) repair. 4. The weight of luxury. BMW engineering when examined by the numbers is squeezing better mileage and better mechanicals out of the car (not reliability). Unfortunately the over engineering is going into adding luxury features, usually more electronic features that breakdown and just add weight to a BMW. There is no reason for an E92 to weigh so much more than the old E46, except for crappy electronic luxury features. If BMW would just make a performance version then it would have a real car (again).
Aaron is unashamed to be a native Clevelander and the proud driver of a Hyundai Veloster Turbo (which recently replaced his 1995 Saturn SC-2). He gleefully utilizes his background in theater, literature, and communication to dramatically recite his own articles to nearby youth. Mr. Widmar happily resides in Dayton, Ohio with his magnificent wife, Vicki, but is often on the road with her exploring new destinations. Aaron has high aspirations for his writing career but often gets distracted pondering the profound nature of the human condition and forgets what he was writing… See more articles by Aaron.