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 Bluetooth Retrofit Installation Project

For some time I was researching how I could install a phone car kit in my X5 to be used with the Nokia 6310i. As I am very happy with the Nokia 6310i and need its international roaming capabilities I didn't want to buy yet another phone or even use any of the Motorola phones offered by BMW as dealer retrofit option.

Update 07/05/2004 for available snap-in adapters

Update 06/04/2003

Since I retrofitted my X5 with the Nokia 6310i phone another fellow X5 driver decided to use the Siemens S55 phone in conjunction with the BT kit. I have added two photos from his center console below. The S55 is a very nice phone and offers a color display and lots of other features. I highly recommend the S55 to folks who would like to have a "cool" phone but still would like to be able to use "business" features.

I already knew that BMW is offering a Bluetooth capable car kit for customers in Europe but for some reason is not yet shipping this option in the US. Many people told me that it would be impossible to retrofit the Bluetooth kit in my X5 here in the US. However a few calls to BMW in Germany and one visit later I know have a fully functional Bluetooth kit installed in my X5 ...

As of early May 2003 the Bluetooth kit is still not available in the US but rumors say it should be available really soon. As I didn't want to wait for BMW NA to finally ship the kit I decided to buy the kit back in Germany and have it installed here in the US.

The kit itself comes complete with all installation instructions and if your X5 has the telephone preparation installed (Option S640A) the kit can be installed in less than 2hrs (with plenty of spare parts afterwards :) ). In order to figure out which kit you need you might find the following information useful

As BMW has now made the Bluetooth kit available in the US for orders you can find the part numbers for the US BT kits below (the numbers mentioned further down are for the European version of the kit (which works in the US but I'd recommend to buy the US version for warranty reasons).

Update 07/22/2003 for US Bluetooth Kits

Cars built after 04/2002

Cars built before 04/2002 and after 04/2001

Once you have figured out the kit you need you'll also have to decide on which snap-in adapter you are going to use (you don't have to use the snap-in holder if you don't care about the phone being charged and using the external antenna). I only have information for the Nokia 6310(i) snap-in holder but there are also snap-in adapters available for the Siemens S55 and Ericsson T39. However every Bluetooth capable phone should work with the kit.

The snap-in adapters can be purchased directly from dealers in Europe as January 2004 the BMW dealers in the US can't order the snap-in adapters directly. If you want a snap-in adapter your best option is to fined someone in Europe (or traveling to Europe) to buy a snap-in adapter and send it to you. I've been "importing" snap-in adapters for the past 12 months but only as a last resort for folks who have been unable to obtain an adapter via another route.

There are also alternatives to the factory Bluetooth kit which might be of interest. The two kits I found during my research are the Nokia Car Kit CARK112 and the Parrot CK3000 Bluetooth Kit. Both are available from Expansys.

The installation itself is very easy (if you have option S640A) and after the kit has been installed you need to take your car to a BMW dealer to get the Bluetooth kit coded into the system. The programming is performed via DISplus and most dealers should have instructions by now on how to this. The whole programming process will not take longer than 30 minutes. The last step you need to perform is to "pair" the phone with your car kit by searching for Audio/BT accessories and entering the Bluetooth Passcode of your Bluetooth kit (the passcode can be found on a little white sticker on top of the Bluetooth main unit in the trunk (it will be installed underneath the CD changer location , see photo below).

I had the kit installed by Sound in Motion here in Boston who once again have done an outstanding job.

Below you will find some photos from the kit after it has been installed.

Nokia snap-in adapter without phone

Nokia snap-in adapter with phone

Siemens S55 snap-in adapter in middle armrest

Telephone selection in the navigation screen

Phone menu in the Navigation display

Phone Address Book in Navigation Screen

Address book control via steering wheel controls

Bluetooth central unit in left rear trunk area (underneath CD changer)

Bluetooth antenna mounted on top of Navigation DVD and CD Changer (little black unit)

Below are pictures of the actual snap-in adapters which simply just replace the storage tray in the middle armrest.

Nokia 6310i snap-in adapter


Siemens S55/56 snap-in adapter

If you have any questions, comments or remarks please feel free to contact me.

For installation quotes and information please contact the folks at Sound in Motion at 617-787-7744 (Derek or Jim)

   Last updated on Friday, March 10, 2006 by Jan Mark Holzer  & Sound in Motion .