Introduction: BMW 530i - Adding the BMW "Sports Mode" Button Hack
This instructable will uncover the option to add the BMW sports driving mode on all 2006 BMW 530i's with the E60 chassis. The sports driving mode was never offered for this particular model, even though they classify this car model as a sport model, you couldn't get the actual sport driving mode. How this works, and how it's possible, is because this model and other E60 chassis BMW's use the same engines, with the same electronics. Since different models use the same chassis, a lot of the options will be the same. Certain options are not offered on lower end models, even though the capabilities are there. I have only done this hack on a 2006 BMW 530i with the E60 chassis, but I believe this button can be added to any E60 chassis, in the 5series models, in the "I" class.
Pry Tool or flathead screwdriver
(2) Bushing Contact With Wire Lead (http://www.ecstuning.com/ES164037/)
Momentary button/switch of your choice
18 to 22 gauge wire
Quick Scope of Work:
What we are going to be doing is actually very simple. We will be taking the dash apart to get to a harness that is connected to the ecu , once we have the dash/ecu out and the back exposed we will be adding two pins to a harness, which will be connected to a momentary switch or button of your choice. After the two wires are inserted in the harness you need to figure out where you want to mount your button/switch. Run wires and button to the desired spot, and mount switch. Put everything back together in reverse order as you took it apart. Now to make sure it works, start your car, push the button you installed and make sure the word sport comes on in the info center in between your gauges.
And there you have it.
Step 1: Remove Dash Piece
Start on the right hand side of the center strip piece. Use a pry tool or a flat head screw driver and insert it in between the strip and the dash and pry it away from the dash, towards yourself. It might take a little more force to get it started than you think. Once you broke the center piece free on that side, work your way to the other side of the strip, pulling the piece towards you. When you feel a section breaking loose move down some on the strip. Once you have broken the whole piece loose, pull it out at an upward angle, like your pointing the vents upward. Once you have the piece out, there is going to be a wire harness you need to unhook.
Step 2: Unplug Harness
There will be a small tab that needs to be pressed in order to unplug it.
Step 3: Remove Screws
Arrows are pointing to the screws needed to be removed. Once those screws are removed carefully grab the top of that piece and pull it towards yourself till it is broken free. Next grab the bottom of that piece, its one piece down to the ashtray section, and pull that out till it is broken free. Put your thumb in that empty pocket right above the ashtray and your other fingers on the side of the center column, and the slid that pocket out using your thumb. Once you have the bottom free, you will notice that it doesn't have enough room to completely come out plus we need to remove some wire harness's.
Step 4: Harness Removal (top)
Now you need to remove the three top harnesses. The one to the left has tabs that need to be pushed in order to pull it out. The middle and right one has a button that needs to be pressed in order for the top slide piece to slide over to release the harness. Once those top three harnesses are removed, in order to get to the bottom three you will need to turn the car on, not started just on, so that you can pull the gear shifter down all the way. Now pull the console piece out enough to be able to work with the bottom three harness.
Step 5: Harness Removal (bottom)
The bottom 3 harness plugs are removed in the same fashion as the top three plugs. The middle bottom plug is the plug we will be adding our two wires to. Once you have all three plugs removed take the center console piece completely out. And then put the car back into park and and turn off the car.
Step 6: Middle Plug
Now it's time to get to business. We will be working with the middle harness for this hack. We first need to remove the adaptor shell that is around the plug part itself. To do this you will need to press in the tab that is on the side of the adaptor shell (there is an arrow pointing at the tab in the picture) and simply pull on the wires to pull it out of the adapter piece.
Step 7: Adding the Pins
You will be adding the two pins once you have the harness exposed. It doesn't matter which ones you plug into the harness as long as your put your two wires in pin slot 8 and 10. They will be empty, so you won't be removing anything, just adding. Now this is when you need to find a place to mount your button. Once you have found a location, mount it, then solder two wires to the momentary switch, making sure you solder one wire to the common leg, and one to the "normally open" leg (NO). Also you should use either heat shrink or some electrical tape to put around the switch and wires you just soldered on the switch. If your using heat shrink make sure you put it on wires first. Then run your two wires you just soldered to the switch to the wires you plugged into he harness into pin #8 & #10 and solder them together. It doesn't matter which wire goes to which.
Step 8: Getting Finished
At this point you need to connect all the plugs back into their appropriate spots on the center piece you took out. Basically you need to put everything back together in reverse order as you took it apart. After you have connected and put everything back together, it's time to enjoy your new sportier car.
Step 9: Enjoy Your Extremely Low Cost, Not Offered "Sport Mode" Option
Start the car and press your new button, you should see the word "sport" appear in your info center, in between the speedometer and the tachometer. Now your finished.
The sport mode does a couple things for your car... Stiffens the suspension, stiffens the steering at low and medium rpm's and the engine becomes more aggressive.