A lot of new vehicles have more ability than they arrive to owners with. In many cases, they are locked behind subscriptions but in the case of the Ford F-150 Lightning and the Mustang Mach-E, those abilities are just waiting for a person with the know-how to enable them. One YouTube channel just walked us through the process and it’s simpler than one might think.
Right off the top we should mention that we’re not talking about adding horsepower or totally new features. The changes that can be made with this process simply enable features that the vehicle is already capable of. For example, you can brighten the LED lightbar at the front of the F-150 Lightning. You can enable the Matrix LED headlights and optimize them too. And in this tutorial we see the host add extra blinks to the single-tap turn signal function.
Three main components are required to make changes to the vehicle: a laptop, an OBDII dongle, and a program called Forscan. That software allows one to connect to a Ford vehicle and then enable those features. Of course, the dongle acts as the physical bridge between the software on the laptop and the OBDII port on the vehicle.
Read: BMW Owners Have Hacked Their Cars Before And Subscriptions Might Cause Them To Again
Once everything is connected, users can change values to achieve specific outcomes. To figure out which values to change, most users follow directions found on online forums. And following that direction is vital.
As the host of Transport Evolved mentions, this isn’t something that should be done carelessly. Messing up the process of changing settings or enabling features can result in a bricked vehicle. And you sure don’t want to end up with a heaping pile of SUV or truck that doesn’t do anything.
There’s no telling if this sort of hacking or tunability will always be available. Many manufacturers have taken a noticeable step in making their vehicles a lot less tweakable via software changes. Ford specifically has closed the door to third-party tuning on its new Mustang and Dodge says that it’ll lock tuners out of the new EV muscle car it has in the works.
Image Transport Evolved on YouTube