Well it has been a while now since I have been on wordpress, and we have had a chance to try quite a few diagnostic tools since I was last here. Today I am looking at the Autel Maxidiag range of tools. The Maxidiag range consists of 4 Hand held tools, three of which are identical except for the screen which shows the model type eg FR704 JP701 EU702 and US703 The Maxidiag Pro MD801 is different in appearance with a rubberised protective cover around the outer edge, the software for all 4 tools is interchangeable, meaning you can load any of the tools with any of the software, the only drawback is all but the MD801 does not have enough memory to install all the software at once.

The first we will look at is the FR704

The FR704 is used for reading and clearing codes in Renault, Citroen and Peugeot cars and light commercial vehicles, to approx 2008 , It works well on most systems, with good coverage on both petrol and Diesel engines from approx 1998 or basically all early models fitted with the 16 pin OBD2 plug. ABS and Airbag coverage is good also with most cars covered. We found that some Diesel Peugeot engines fitted with the fuel additive system would log faults that the FR704 could not clear as the problem is with the Fuel additive ECU which is not accessible with the tool. The FR704 also covers Automatic transmissions, but to date we have not had an automatic car to test this system on. The other features on the device are common to all the tools and will be covered later.

Maxidiag EU702

The EU702 has the greatest coverage of the 3 separate tools, covering, Audi, BMW, Mercedes Benz, Vauxhall, Volvo, Seat, Skoda and VW to approx 2008.Systems covered include engine, ABS, SRS Automatic transmission and instrument cluster It also allows service reset on VAG, Conditional based service on BMW and it will also reset the BMW based Rover 75 service interval vehicles. There are some issues with the EU702, namely, Mercredes and Vauxhall vehicles that use different pins in the diagnostic plug for various ABS and airbag  systems, the EU702 cannot access these as it is not a multiplexer type tool which is required to scan these systems. The BMW cars fitted with both the 16 pin OBD2 and the 20 pin underbonnet plug are compatible, provided the tool is used with the 20 pin adapter, to access the ABS and airbag controllers on these cars you must use the 20 pin plug as the 16 pin OBD2 plug is only used for engine diagnostics.

The Autel range is available on our new website: www.scantooldirect.co.uk