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New M-Class (W166) 2012, Read about the upcoming M-Class

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Old 06-10-2013, 11:31 AM   #1
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Installed Escort 8500ci/QI45 Radar

I finally had the time to install the Escort 8500ci/qi45 stealth radar detector. I dont speed that much but after having a V1 in my previous car I felt
kinda "naked" without the radar, so I decide to man up and do a complete remote radar install.
Click the image to open in full size.

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Radar antenna is mounted behind the grill:
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Display location:
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Warning LED:
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The main interface box/speaker is in the passenger foot well -in the spot with big holes in the picture:
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Overall install took me one full day(about 10 hours), i am very impressed with MLs ease of taking things apart and engineering simplicity. Out of the
10 hours I spent about 5 hours brainstorming, if I had to do it again would take me 2 hours max. Took me 2 hours trying to figure out how the center
console comes out and spend about 3 hours debating on the radar antenna location and couple hardware store runs for nuts/bolts brackets. Dragging wires
through the firewall is a breeze: there is a small round rubber cap on the passenger footwell which comes off and you get access to the firewall! from
the engine bay side you just take off the cabin filter cover off (3 pop-clips) and there you go- you can now get anything through the firewall.
Will be adding Escort Shifter pack in a few weeks and will take more pictures of how the antenna is mounted with the grill off.

Very nice radar overall, havent had a chance to compare the performance yet, but the reviews seem to be very good.
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Last edited by stas2007; 06-10-2013 at 11:49 AM.
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Old 06-10-2013, 12:54 PM   #2
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Looks pretty cool, but also like a lot of work.

I have been considering this other type of installation, which integrates the device into the cluster interface. It also is specially designed for those with Distronic Plus, so the signals don't interfere.

Click the image to open in full size.
Cluster Interface

This interface is designed for integration of an Escort radar and laser protection system into select Mercedes-Benz vehicles with Distronic Plus. Because Distronic Plus causes false readings on radar detectors, this unit is required to filter out the unwanted frequencies. No radar detector provides you with this ability off the shelf. The interface also eliminates the need for external modules and holes, making the alerts and settings appear on the factory instrument cluster LCD.

see: http://www.midcityengineering.com/ra...ort-interfaces.

They also have a version for those without Distronic Plus: http://www.midcityengineering.com/ra...faces/9500c166

They don't publish a price online...so don't know how this compares.

They also make a remote starter: http://www.midcityengineering.com/smartkey-starter
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Old 06-10-2013, 01:15 PM   #3
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I've seen that interface, its around 500$. As far as installation is even more work with Cluster Interface.
With remote radars, installation greatly varies with where you ll put all the components, I really wanted the display in the ashtray, which made things a lot more complicating.
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Old 06-13-2013, 01:22 PM   #4
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Nicely done..
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Old 06-13-2013, 01:54 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by stas2007 View Post
I've seen that interface, its around 500$. As far as installation is even more work with Cluster Interface.
With remote radars, installation greatly varies with where you ll put all the components, I really wanted the display in the ashtray, which made things a lot more complicating.
It does look pretty cool having it in the ashtray...but is there any functional benefit to having it in the ashtray instead of the cluster? More or easier control?
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Old 06-13-2013, 02:58 PM   #6
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It does look pretty cool having it in the ashtray...but is there any functional benefit to having it in the ashtray instead of the cluster? More or easier control?
Its simple-cops cant see it and I can still easily change settings on the unit or turn the radar/jammers off if I get pulled over. Basically the led light functions as warning, when there is an alert-it blinks red, the location is perfectly within eyesight and voice alert from the speaker tells me which bands/laser etc. Lucky for me the passenger footwell had a bunch of holes so the speaker sound is loud and clear, with the volume on the radio at 75% I can still hear the speaker.I drive with ashtray closed 90% of the time.

Though it might look difficult on pictures 8500ci is much easier to install than lets say 9500ci, there is only 3 components-display, antenna and main interface(the 4th is LED light which is optional)
Even if you go for the Midcity interface you still have to turn off the unit through the display or switch between highway/city modes and install it.
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Old 06-14-2013, 09:47 PM   #7
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First to the OP - nice clean install and good on ya for doing it yourself.

I'm running the Bel STiR+ with the MidCity module interphase on my W212 and planning to do the same on the wife's W166. The STiR+ is the king for range and ramp up. Can't recommend it highly enough. The MidCity module rides the communication bus to the display; specifcally the audio display so you need to have the cluster set to audio. Everything else is buried under the glove compartment as pictured above and sound is crystal clear. The midcity module now allows you to control most radar detector settings through the steering wheel buttons so no need for the STIR+ display anywhere.

As for shifters...save your money on the Escort product and pick up a Laser Interceptor (dual or quad). They are king of the hill for both detection and jamming capability. The Escort product will only jam some of the older guns...sometimes. They haven't been effective on new laser guns for ~5 years. One thing I can't stress enough on laser jammers is that once you get them installed...get them tested! Fine tuning the angle / level / placement is critical. If you do that right they WILL work. If serious about radar detectors or laser jammers check out http://www.radardetectorforum.org/. Great group of guys with a ton of knowledge over there and always willing to help. Regional groups hold testing events fairly regularly if you don't mind a short drive to check out your set-up.
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Last edited by Pntblnk; 06-14-2013 at 09:51 PM.
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Old 06-22-2013, 05:45 PM   #8
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Can you please post a pic of that passanger footwell to access the engine bay side..
thank you
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Old 06-27-2013, 08:57 AM   #9
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Can you please post a pic of that passanger footwell to access the engine bay side..
thank you
To access the plug in firewall:
from inside: take off the bottom plastic cover(the one closest to passengers feet), showld have 3 or 4 screws.Look around you should see 3 or 4 rubber plugs with the wiring going through some of them, there is one rubber plug that has no wires-thats the one i used, pop it of-now you have the hole
from outside:
take of the passenger plastic cover close to the windshield wiper, ( this the plastic cover that would be directly under the "fins" if the hood is closed, this cover has an air inlet to route air to inside of the car from the fin)
once you take it off you will see a box-next take off the box(2 metal pins on top) once you took of the box you have direct access to the firewall hole which is under the box.You wont be able to see it but you can find it by hand very easily, there is plenty of space there.
hope this helps!
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Old 06-27-2013, 08:57 AM
 
 
 
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2013, 550, 8500, 8500ci, direct, display, escort, excort, install, led, mercedes, ml350, pics, radar, sl, wire



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