Q: What is the electronic data recorder?

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What is the electronic data recorder?

A: Your car has a number of pretty advanced sy...

Your car has a number of pretty advanced systems onboard, such as the SYNC system. It also has an electronic data recorder, or EDR. This is a computerized device that works sort of like the “black box” in an airplane. It doesn’t record anything but crash and near-crash data, however. The system records about 30 seconds of data for use in crash analysis, including the following:

  • The operation of vehicle systems

  • What seat belts were buckled

  • How far the gas pedal was pressed in (if it was at all)

  • The speed of your car

  • The steering wheel position


The EDR only records data during crash and near-crash situations. It doesn’t record at any other time.

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