How to check if a vehicle is compatible with our Auto API? OpenDevTalk#6

January 4, 2023
Utilising in-vehicle connected car data enables fleet operators and drivers to receive live data without any additional hardware. Although our internal studies show very high compatibility rates for vehicles built in the past three years, there might be exceptions for some specific models and also for older vehicles in general. Therefore, it is crucial to understand that vehicle eligibility is not only depending on the model but also on its equipment. Especially, some low-cost brands might offer connectivity capabilities as special equipment which has not always been selected when the vehicle was initially purchased. Consequently, vehicle compatibility can be validated by performing vehicle-specific checks using the free Vehicle Eligibility API provided by High Mobility.

Eligibility Check for Connected Cars

The best way for utilising the vehicle eligibility test is by embedding the checking procedure into the onboarding process: Whenever a new car is added to a service or product its compatibility can be validated before the consent capturing flow or fleet clearance is initiated. Since manufacturers regularly introduce new cars and models the checking process should be as dynamic as possible. Therefore, static tables that list compatible models should only be applied in exceptional cases.

High Mobility provides an API endpoint to evaluate the exact vehicle capabilities and additional compatibility lists on a brand and model basis as part of the public documentation.

In order to start working with the Vehicle Eligibility API, we are recommending going through each of the following steps. Every underlying aspect will be explained in more detail both in the video of our 6th Open Dev Talk and this blog post.

  •  Check supported brands for the API endpoint
  •  Prepare for using the eligibility lookup API
  •  Implementing the request and analyse results
  •  Consider model lists for unsupported brands


Supported manufacturers and brands

Car manufacturers provide lookup services to check vehicle compatibility on a car-by-car basis. However, each service comes in its own format and structure. High Mobility has harmonised and unified the compatibility check services into one single API endpoint for all cooperating brands and OEMs.

Since most but not all OEMs offer respective lookup services the first recommended step is to check which brands are currently covered. While most brands offer the eligibility check independent of legitimate B2C or B2B purposes there might be some legal and technical restrictions that apply to certain OEMs. In order to review the details you can go to docs.high-mobility.com and check out the Vehicle Eligibility Tutorial where brands and restrictions are updated on a regular basis.

Prerequisites for the connected car compatibility API

The vehicle eligibility API can be used as soon as you have submitted your app container. Compatibility checks can then be performed on all brands that have been successfully activated for this specific data container on our platform. If you are not yet familiar with the data container approach and the app submission process we strongly recommend reviewing our first Open Dev Talk to receive some additional guidance.

In order to perform a valid request you need to generate an Auth Token by using JWT, the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and the corresponding brand name (e.g. "Peugeot") of the car that is supposed to be tested.

In Open Dev Talk #5, we have demonstrated how you can reuse our sample code to generate a short-lived token and quickly start using the advanced options being part of our Service Account API.

Calling the vehicle eligibility check API

As soon as you have finalised the preparation, you can pass-in the VIN of the desired vehicle, the brand name and the authorisation token using the eligibility check endpoint 'https://api.high-mobility.com/v1/eligibility'. The result highlights if the vehicle is compatible with High Mobility's Auto API by saying "eligible = true" or "eligible = false". Furthermore, the result states if the car can be used to generally get data pushed or if pull-based approaches (e.g. REST API) need to be used. Some brands even provide more advanced information such as if a primary driver has been assigned to the vehicle and if the subscription for the connected car connectivity services has been booked.

Our Customer Success Manager Anissa Semahi has used a test car's VIN with the respective brand name "peugeot" in the corresponding Open Dev Talk 6 video. In this example, the car is eligible and data can be pushed and pulled. To better understand which exact data points can be subscribed to via MQTT and which data items might be only available through based pull-based calls, you can always review our data catalogue provided through this Airtable link.

List of compatible cars for retrieving connected car data

Our public online documentation lists eligible cars based on brand, model name and manufacturing year to get a general overview of the expected vehicle compatibility and also to cover brands that are not yet supported by our Eligibility Check API. Please be aware that certain brands and models might have different names in different countries and that there might be cars that come without the required special equipment although the model name is the same.

For large fleet operators, we offer a free fleet compatibility analysis based on your individual list of vehicle identification numbers.

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