I read a Prius forum based in the USA, I’ve joined what seems to be the only Prius club in Australia, which is based in Queensland and apart from the white GenII with the Tesla sticker I see in Belconnen, there doesn’t seem to be a hardcore Prius scene in Canberra. I see a few Gen II, Gen III and Prius v, but none seem to have been modified or tinkered with in any way.
So it has taken me from Australia Day until the end of September to finally meet someone who knows his LOD from his LHK.
Jon was visiting Canberra for Floriade (you really must see it) and took some time away from his family to meet me, talk Prius and sell me a ScanGauge-e. Here’s the thing… the reason he had one for sale is that he had already reached the limit of 4 ScanGauges daisy-chained together and couldn’t fit any more.
As mentioned, I already use a Garmin 2460LT GPS and Garmin Mechanic with ecoRoute™ HD. The ecoroute captures data from the OBDCII port and transmits them by Bluetooth to the GPS for display. It is even clever enough to store capture data until the GPS is connected.
In my short time of using the ScanGauge-e I can say that there’s a fair degree of overlap with the functions in the ecoroute. However, there’s a difference in how data are presented: The Garmin has separate screens for Fuel Consumption, ‘eco score’, 5 gauges (out of a choice of 12) and of course the map. ScanGauge-e has a 2 line dot matrix display that can display two parameters from a choice of 19 and a fuel consumption graph. Both have a method of recording fuel used, but whereas the ecoroute records each fill up on a spreadsheet, the ScanGauge uses the data to calibrate and calculate Distance to Empty and similar functions. Since the DTE function on the Prius is incredibly conservative (I drove 35 km beyond the DTE = 0km mark at freeway speeds and still had 4 litres of fuel left) having an independent DTE is a boon, especially if I want to hit my first 1000 km tank in relative safety.
Jon helped with the initial set-up and calibration. I even had to fill up, which is the time to start the calibration. Only problem was the fuel price set at $75.0. Despite holding the button in, the value took a long time to change. Of course, the hidden cents value was dropping rapidly, but only the tens of cents value was displayed. Today I used a handy clamp to wind the price back to a more realistic cost per litre. Only took 20 minutes to reach $1.46.
Makeshift installation was a bit wiry. The OBDCII splitter worked fine (you can’t always feed OBDC data to two devices). The main issue was the amount of cable to conceal and devices to place. Today I re-installed all of my devices in the interests of safety and efficiency. I routed the cables under the steering column, using some unused switch blanks to enter and exit the dash.