Table of Contents iDRIVE: COMFORT AREA

Table of Contents iDRIVE: COMFORT AREA
Table of Contents
Introduction. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3
Control Display. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
Brightness Control. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6
Connectors. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8
Controller. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
Generation of Tactile Feedback. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10
Connection to the Controller . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .11
Heating and Air Conditioning Control Panel. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
Audio System Controller Control Panel. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .13
Telecommander. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
Principle of Operation
Control Display Format. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Work Shop Hints
Service Mode. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
Review Questions. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30
Initial Print Date: 10/01
Revision Date: 11/01
Model: E65 - 745i
Production Date: 11/2001 - Start of Production
After completing this module you should be able to:
Recognize which controls and displays are contained in the Comfort Area.
Understand the operating principles of the Controller and Control Display.
iDrive: Comfort Area
Comfort Area: Control Display and Controller
Improved display systems and digital technology enable new control functions and display
options. In addition, the number of vehicle functions is increasing. This growth is likely to
be concentrated in the area of convenience and communication functions such as multimedia applications and information services.
In order to be able to make use this abundance of functions without having an unmanageable array of controls and displays, the following concept has been developed:
1. Combination of user interfaces into a single multifunctional display in the form of the
Control Display offering centralized screen-based control of functions.
2. Screen-based control of functions performed by means of a central operating control in
the form of the Controller.
The Control Display and the Controller set new standards in driver-vehicle interface design.
This is a logical progression from the On-Board Monitor first introduced on the E38.
The most important characteristics of the
centralized control and display system are the
Standardized layout for all functions
Standardized control strategy for all
High-quality visualization and ergonomics
Possibility for easy modification of user
interface by software update
iDrive: Comfort Area
The fundamental component of the Comfort Area is the Control Display and its associated
operating control, the Controller.
The Control Display is built into the center of the dashboard. The Controller is on the center console, positioned ergonomicly in front of the center armrest.
All convenience functions are within easy reach of the driver and front passenger.
The following controls are in the Comfort Area:
Control Display and Controller.
Air conditioning control panel incorporating switches for hazard warning lights and
central locking.
Control panel for radio and compact disc (optional cassette) player.
Telecommander (retractable telephone key pad).
1. Control Display
2. IHKA panel with hazard light
switch and central lock button
3. Audio System Controller (ASK)
iDrive: Comfort Area
Control Display
The Control Display consists of:
1. Metal casing with integral electronic module
2. LCD display
3. Hood with glass cover.
iDrive: Comfort Area
A 16-bit processor is responsible for communication (gateway function) between the MOST
and K-CAN SYSTEM bus systems, it also performs the tasks of diagnosis processing and
illumination dimming.
A 32-bit processor with 16 MB of RAM and a 16 MB graphics memory is responsible for
display output and user guidance.
The Control Display is equipped with a Flash memory module. This means that software
can be downloaded/updated via the diagnosis interface at any time.
The text and character sets for the language-specific elements of the user interface (country coded) are stored in the Flash memory.
The size of the LCD display is 8.8 inches (diagonal). The complete Control Display assembly is attached to the dashboard by three screws. The LCD display plus the hood and glass
cover are removable, this means that if the glass cover becomes scratched the LCD display and hood can be replaced separately.
The LCD display plus hood clips onto the metal casing. A special tool is required to separate the two components. Internally, the LCD display is connected to the electronic module by a ribbon cable.
On the rear of the metal casing there are cooling fins. Next to them is a 5-amp fuse, this
protects the Control Display against damage from excessive current.
Brightness Control
There is a photo-cell on the front of the LCD to the right of the screen for detecting the
ambient light so that the screen brightness can be adjusted accordingly.
The screen brightness also responds to manual adjustment of the instrument lighting dimmer control.
Control Display photo-cell location
iDrive: Comfort Area
The Control Display communicates via the MOST bus system with all other components on
the MOST bus.
The Control Display is the system master for the MOST bus. The system master holds the
knowledge of the complete system and links up the individual modules into a system.
The Control Display also performs the function of power master within the MOST network.
That means that the Control Display wakes up all MOST nodes (control units). They then
register with the Audio System Controller (= connection master, control function for establishing connection).
Once all nodes (MOST control units) have registered as awake, a message to that effect is
sent to the Control Display by the ASK.
The Control Display is also responsible for sending the MOST nodes to sleep. The MOST
bus is networked to the remaining bus systems via the K-CAN SYSTEM.
The Control Display contains the gateway module, MOST-CAN Gateway (MCGW) to function as an interface between the MOST and K-CAN-S busses.
The instrument cluster is an exception. It has a separate connection to the K-CAN S.
The Controller is connected by the K-CAN S via the Center Console Control Center module (BZM) to the Control Display.
The diagnosis interface for the Control Display is the ZGM via the diagnosis bus.
iDrive: Comfort Area
The Control Display has a 14-pin (1) and
a 12-pin (2) connector.
The 14-pin connector incorporates the
connections for the MOST (fiber-optic)
and K-CAN-System bus systems.
The 12-pin connector provides the
RGB-format (RGB = red, green, blue)
video input.
The Control Display is capable of digitizing analog video signals and displaying
them on the LCD screen in full-screen or
split-screen mode.
The Controller is an evolution of the rotary push button used on the previous On-Board
It is the central operating control for all convenience functions and selected options for vehicle functions. The Controller is located in the most comfortable and ergonomic position for
the user (driver or front passenger).
It is on the front portion of the armrest between the driver and front passenger seats.
iDrive: Comfort Area
Continued development of the practice-proven rotary push button principle has provided
the Controller with an additional linear movement capability in the horizontal plane.
The Controller can be moved horizontally from its resting position (center position), to which
it always returns when released.
The 8 main menus around the edge of the Control Display are arranged in a pattern resembling the points of a compass. There are 8 main directions in which the Controller is moved
in the horizontal plane in order to select the main menus.
Controller direction of
The 8 main directions of movement of the Controller are scanned by a switch unit. That
switch unit consists of 8 individual switches. They are positioned at 45 degrees to each
If the Controller is moved to one of the main menus (option panels) and released at that
point/moved back to its center position, the selected menu opens.
iDrive: Comfort Area
Generation of Touch Sensitive Feedback
Since there are a wide variety of ways in which the Controller can be held and moved, only
the key movements are signalled to the user by touch sensitive feedback (simulated dial
The positions/movements for which there is feedback are:
Center position
8 main directions of movement in horizontal plane
Clockwise/anti-clockwise rotation (with incremental divisions for selection function)
• Depressed position (confirmation function)
The touch sensitive feedback for the center position, the main horizontal directions of
movement and the depressed position are created mechanically. Only the feedback for the
rotation movement is generated electrically.
When the Controller is rotated in a control menu it provides touch sensitive feedback for the
user. This is for the purpose of simulating the familiar mechanical stops of a conventional
rotary control knob.
When items on the Control Display screen are selected, there is a difference between the
strength of the feedback for different items such as lists, function buttons, screen areas and
end stops. This difference is used as a method of confirmation so that changes in the
Control Display can be made with a minimal amount of visual distraction
When the Control Display is switched off, the controller rotates freely without any incremental stops.
Inside the Controller there is a DC motor which is controlled by pulse-width modulation
(PWM) signals. That motor generates a rotational force opposite to the direction of rotation. That opposing force or torque is perceived by the user as a mechanical resistance.
iDrive: Comfort Area
Connection to the Controller
The Controller is connected directly to the BZM by a 16-wire ribbon cable.
1. Controller
2. 16-wire ribbon cable
3. Connector
4. Circuit board
The BZM is fitted inside the center console underneath the Controller. The control panel
units for seat adjustment and auxiliary seat functions are also connected to the BZM.
The BZM has no connection with the functions of the Controller. The bus leads from the
K-CAN-S to the Controller are simply looped through the BZM.
1. Controller
2. Center Console Control
Center (BZM)
3. Control panel for auxiliary
seat functions
4. Control panel for seat
5. 16-wire ribbon cable
6. K-CAN-System
7. Control Display
iDrive: Comfort Area
Heating and Air Conditioning (IHKA) Control Panel
The heating and air conditioning control panel is part of the Comfort Area. Integrated in the
heating and air conditioning control panel are the buttons for the hazard warning lights and
Central Locking.
Parked car ventilation LED
Rotating control knob (endless) for leftside air volume and off push button with
status LED
Hazard switch
Rotating control knob (endless) for
right-side air volume
Rotating control knob for right-side
temperature selection and push button
for Rest function
Rear window defogger button
Right-side Auto button
A/C Button
Central Locking rocker switch
Button for selection of re-circ, fresh air or
AUC (automatic re-circulation).
Left-side Auto button
Max defrost button for windshield
Rotating control knob for left-side
temperature selection and push button
for Max A/C function
When the hazard warning lights are on, the direction indicator function has priority over the
hazard warning lights when the electrical system status is at least KL R.
The Central Lock button is a rocker switch and enables the vehicle to be locked/unlocked
(doors, trunk lid) centrally from inside.
iDrive: Comfort Area
Audio System Controller (ASK) Control Panel
The control panel for the ASK is underneath the heating and air conditioning control panel
on the right and is part of the Comfort Area.
1. Rotary/push button
for ON/OFF and
2. Eject button
3. Rocker button for
station search, track
selection or fwd/rwd.
The control panel and the ASK control module are a single unit. The control panel incorporates the main rotary/push-button control for switching on all audio sources. It is also
the volume control.
The control panel also has a rocker button for fast forwarding/ rewinding cassettes/CDs
and an Eject button for cassettes/CDs.
Note: The E65 will be equipped with an in-dash CD player as standard. There is a cassette player
available as a no cost option.
iDrive: Comfort Area
The Telecommander is a retractable telephone key pad and is also part of the Comfort Area.
Pressing on the phone board opens it out.
It is moved back in by pushing it back into its slot by hand until it locks into place.
The key pad is a 3 x 5 numeric pad for manual dialing and operating the telephone. All keys
on the key pad have back lighting.
iDrive: Comfort Area
Principle of Operation
Control Display Format
The 8.8" screen with a resolution of 640 x 240 pixels (width x height) can be divided into
four areas.
Top status bar
Control Area
Bottom status bar
The area on the left between the two status bars is the control area in which the options of
the selected main menu (e.g. Entertainment) are displayed and selected.
The area on the right is the assistance screen. This is where individually selected functions
from the "Vehicle Data" menu such as On-Board Computer, or the route display for the navigation system or the short description and Help info. are displayed.
The two status bars permanently display the status of the most important functions such
as outside temperature or time. The top and bottom status bars extend across the entire
iDrive: Comfort Area
The Status Bars
The status of the most important functions operated by means of the Control Display are
indicated permanently on the top and bottom status bars once the ignition is ON.
iDrive: Comfort Area
Unread e-mail text messages
Telephone signal strength
Name of telephone provider or
Phone number dialed or phone number of
Incoming call
Telephone status: Green=phone on
Red=no service
Traffic message channel (not used in U.S.)
Vehicle status (Check control and Condition
Based Service)
Destination when navigation system active
Set temperature for left zone
Ventilation setting for left zone
Entertainment system status
( radio station, CD track etc.)
Ventilation setting for right zone
Set temperature for right zone
Time display
Date display
Outside temperature display
The Basic Menu
The basic menu shows a graphical representation of the Controller in the center with arrows
indicating its directions of horizontal movement for selecting any of the 8 main menus
arranged around the edge. To the right is the assistance screen.
The basic menu always remains behind the currently selected menu as a ninth menu and
can be recalled by moving the Controller in the direction of the active main menu.
Pressing the Controller when the basic menu is active switches off the Control Display.
However, the bottom status bar showing the status of the air conditioning, entertainment
system, time and date remains visible!
When the Control Display is switched off, pressing the Controller or moving it horizontally
switches the Control Display on.
If the Controller is moved in the direction of one of the main menus, this not only switches
the Control Display on, it also opens the menu that is located in that direction.
The following actions also cause the Control Display to switch on:
Display of a priority 1 message box, e.g. a check control message such as "Engine oil
pressure too low"
Operation of the PDC (Park Distance Control).
An incoming/outgoing telephone call or operation of the Send/ End button on the
Operating the audio system in KL 30.
iDrive: Comfort Area
Help System
There is a help system for using the Control Display. It is activated by moving the Controller
towards the bottom right ("south east") to the "Help" menu.
The help is in the form of short text information. The help provides explanations of the
selected menu options. When the help is activated, context-related explanations appear on
the assistance screen according to the position of the highlighted function.
1. Brief Info
2. Menu Name
3. Help text on display
The help is activated by selecting the "Brief Info" button with the Controller and then
depressing the Controller to confirm the selection.
If the On-Board Computer or the navigation system road map is displayed on the assistance screen, the “Brief Info” is automatically deactivated.
It then has to be re-activated by means of the Help menu.
If "Menu name" is deactivated, touching the controller briefly in a horizontal direction no
longer highlights the menu button but instead enters directly in to the menu.
iDrive: Comfort Area
Menu Selection
As soon as a certain degree of deflection of the Controller in a particular direction is detected, a graphical indication of the movement is displayed.
The button for the selected menu is visually highlighted and the menu name displayed in
the control area. This applies only if the function Menu Name has been activated in the Help
system or if the Controller is held in the deflected position for more than 1 second.
Releasing the Controller or returning it to the center position starts the menu selection and
it is then displayed on the Control Display.
If the wrong menu is selected by accident (e.g. "BMW ASSIST" instead of "Climate"), this
is easily corrected. Since the movement of the Controller is not restricted by a rigid "gate",
the individual menus can be selected successively by moving the Controller around in a
If the Controller is in the center position, the menu corresponding to the last direction it was
moved in is displayed.
Additional information from other functions such as On-Board Computer or Help (as in the
example shown) can be displayed simultaneously on the assistance screen.
The following pages contain a summary of the remaining menus in clockwise order with
details of the screen displays for the first page of each menu.
More detailed information about those menus and the functions they offer can be found in the relevant information chapters and of course, in the Owners Manual.
iDrive: Comfort Area
The various pages of the “Climate” menu contain the following
Vent position selection
Center vent stratification
Customization of air volume distribution
Parked car ventilation settings
Seat heating proportioning (seat bottom/seat back)
Certain selected climate control settings such as air volume are both available from the
Control Display as well as the IHKA control panel.
If a menu has has more than one page, this is indicated by a button in the bottom left corner. The button is selected rotating the Controller and the selection confirmed by depressing the Controller.
The next menu page then appears.
To return to the previous page select the button again.
iDrive: Comfort Area
"BMW ASSIST" is the menu from which the Service utilities can
be selected.
That includes:
"BMW Service" (breakdown assistance) with links to the Roadside Assistance,
“Home BMW center”, BMW center and Emergency Call.
"BMW Info" with details of special offers (technical services) from the BMW Service
department (planned).
"Traffic Info" with up-to-date, route-specific traffic news. (Planned)
"Information Plus", a more comprehensive information service with up-to-date
information on topics such as parking availability, news headlines, hospitals, overnight
accommodation. (Planned)
1. BMW Service
2. BMW Information
3. Roadside Assistance
4. Home BMW center
5. BMW center
6. Emergency Call
In the future, this menu will also incorporate "ASSIST Online" offering Internet access and
e-mail .
iDrive: Comfort Area
"Communication" is likely to be a very frequently used function.
This menu contains the telephone functions. It allows the user
to list the phone book entries arranged in various orders, e.g.
alphabetically or stored order.
On the next page of the menu (button in bottom left corner) you can view text messages
(SMS messages) received or incoming calls that were not accepted.
1. Top 8 frequently called
2. Last (most recent call)
3. Search in alphabetical
4. Search in stored order
5. Phone book display
6. Button to display next
iDrive: Comfort Area
On-Board Data (and Vehicle Data)
The On-Board Data menu contains the following functions:
On-board Computer
Travel computer
Speed limit
Check Control
CBS data
1. On-Board Computer
2. Travel Computer
3. Speed Limit
4. Stopwatch
5. Move contents of
control screen over to
assistance screen.
6. Next page
The button with the arrow symbol can be used transfer the current display in the control
area to the assistance screen.
The button in the bottom left corner is used to go to the next page of the menu.
There, you can view detailed information relating to the Condition Based Service (CBS) and
Check Control systems.
The function "Service" provides more detailed information on the statuses monitored by the
CBS system.
The function "Check" provides more
detailed information about the Check
Control messages issued.
Expanded Check Control text.
iDrive: Comfort Area
The Navigation menu provides access to all functions
necessary to operate the navigation system.
The road map can be displayed in the control area and it can
also be displayed in the same scale on the assistance screen
(though with a smaller visible area).
This menu contains the following functions:
Services (possibly traffic info in the future)
New route
1. View
2. Destinations
3. Directions
4. Services (planned)
5. Assistance directions
6. New route
7. Move contents of
control screen over to
assistance screen.
Contents already described on page 15.
iDrive: Comfort Area
The “Entertainment” menu contains the following functions:
Audio functions such as radio, cassette and CD player
Memory for storing radio stations and all equalizer and tone
Video functions such as TV and ultimately DVD (Planned for rear Control Display)
1. FM selections
2. AM selections
3. Tape or in-dash CD
4. CD changer
5. List of stored stations
using RDS names
6. Memory page for
storing stations and
7. Button for next page
Note: enabling of RDS is done in the service function described later in Workshop Hints.
iDrive: Comfort Area
The Settings menu is where the individual user settings are
made. This menu contains the following functions:
Date/time entry and adjustment.
Choice of language for Control Display and instrument
Choice of units for Control Display and instrument cluster.
Additional options such as:
• Assign function to the “free” programmable button on the MFL
• Enable/disable automatic parking brake operation ("Automatic Hold")
• Enable/disable PDC graphic display
• RDC initialization and monitor display (optional)
• EDC program selection
1. Time/Date/Memo set
2. Language selection
3. Enable/disable DSC
4. Enable/disable DTC
5. Enable/disable
Automatic hold.
6. Enable/disable PDC
graphic display
7. EDC program selection
Comfort or sport
8. Assign function to MFL
programmable button
On this menu, you can also switch the DSC on or off and, when
the DSC is active, switch the Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) on 9. Not used in U.S.
or off.
10. RDC initialization and
11. Display units setting
12. Displays menu for
option items 5-10.
iDrive: Comfort Area
Workshop Hints
Service Mode
The Controller can be used to gain access to Service mode functions of the Control Display.
Service mode is a special function that provides information about the status of the display
and MOST system.
It is designed for use by Service Technicians and is not intended to be accessible to
vehicle owners.
Service mode provides access to details of the hardware/ software versions for the control
display and the control units in the MOST network.
As an addition to the Test Modules of the Diagnosis Program, Service mode is a simple
means of quickly accessing control module data without the need for a diagnosis tester.
Starting the service mode is somewhat like opening a safe:
• In the Basic menu display, press down the Controller for approximately 6 seconds. This
step initializes the tactile feedback of the motor. (Hint: The help text flashes briefly when
it is ready).
Turn Controller 3 increments clockwise (to the right).
Turn Controller 3 increments anti-clockwise (to the left).
Turn Controller 1 increment clockwise (right).
Turn Controller 1 increment anti-clockwise (left).
Turn Controller 1 increment clockwise (right).
Depress Controller to confirm.
iDrive: Comfort Area
1. MOST devices menu
2. List of found MOST nodes
3. Settings menu
4. “Back” button
The Control Display knows how many MOST nodes there are, i.e. how many MOST nodes
there are on the MOST ring bus. When retrieving the list of MOST control units fitted, the
Control Display waits for a response from each MOST node. Every control unit on the
MOST bus contains a MOST communication chip.
The navigation system control unit has two internal MOST nodes. The query which produces the list of MOST control units is answered by only one of the MOST nodes in the
navigation system control unit.
The responding MOST node is represented as "Navigation" and the other MOST node as
"wait." This entry is not an error.
The function "MOST devices" provides a list of all nodes on the MOST network.
When a control unit is selected, a scrollable list containing the following information
Part number
Hardware number
Coding Index
Diagnosis index
Variant index
Date of Manufacture
Manufacturer number
Message catalog version
Software version
Operating system version
iDrive: Comfort Area
1. Settings menu
2. Master default
3. Enable/disable RDS
4. Not used for U.S.
5. Back-button.
The function "Settings" provides access to the following service settings:
Reset all Vehicle and Key memory functions to default settings (Master default).
• Enable/disable audio system RDS (Radio Data System) function.
Register/de-register cordless handset (SBDH). (not used in the U.S.)
The service mode is exited by selecting the "Back" button (arrow symbol) at the bottom left
of the display or by moving the Controller horizontally.
iDrive: Comfort Area
Review Questions
1. List the components contained in the Comfort Area of iDrive.
2. What is the task of the Control Display on the MOST network?
3. How does the Controller create a different mechanical detent feeling (tactile feedback)
depending on the items selected in the Control Display?
4. If the Control Display is switched off by the user what type of items will automatically
cause the display to switch back on?
5. What type of information can be displayed on the assistance screen?
6. Describe the procedure to switch off the DSC.
7. How is RDS enabled (activated)?
iDrive: Comfort Area
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