Gear review: Autophix Australia Outback 9360 scanner - Caravan World Australia

Gear review: Autophix Australia Outback 9360 scanner

Written by: John Ford

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 A quick look under the bonnet of a modern vehicle reveals an array of unfamiliar electronics and plumbing. To many of us, they are things of wonder and mystery. That’s how I felt when I switched from my LandCruiser 100 Series to the 200 last year (check out my Operation 200 series to see the upgrades I've made along the way). While not a rocket scientist, there were things I could do if things went sour. But the 200? I’m not sure an astrophysicist could work out what’s wrong when the engine light comes on.

There’s a tool that just might save the day. Trevor Ryan established Autophix Australia after he went looking for a tool that would diagnose vehicle problems after he was stranded in the bush. It turned out that, although his Nissan Prado had gone into limp mode and he had to be trucked out, the problem was minor. And then on a trip to the SEMA Auto expo in the USA he found the Autophix range of diagnostic scanners.

An OBD2 scanner is a second generation On Board Diagnostic (OBD2) computer that collects data from sensors and other monitors in modern vehicles which are read by the vehicle’s ECU (Engine Control Unit) and report any problems. When the system uncovers a problem, the ECU will display a warning on the dash. But a quality OBD2 scanner can find the error and clear it if it’s not a major issue. An OBD2 scanner won't repair your vehicle, however it will give you the knowledge to repair minor problems before towing is needed. A lot of the time it's a sensor glitch that simply goes away.

Trevor realised if he had the tool when he broke down, he could have been soon on his way. Recognising there were plenty of 4WD enthusiasts back home who could use the scanner, he became the Australian agent. We are told that Autophix has gone on to become Australia’s leading emergency/recovery scanners for travellers and now offers 15 different models for virtually every vehicle.

For our 200, the right unit is the Toyota specific Autophix Outback 9360 for models sold in Australia and New Zealand from 2006. The scanner is a unit about the size of a large phone with a cord which I plugged into the OBD2 port under the steering wheel. The screen came to life, and I scrolled through the various Toyota models till I found the 200, the year and the model.

As you might expect, there are hundreds of different parameters you can check, or you can tell the Autophix units to scan for errors. I’m happy to report there were none.  

I scrolled through the menu in search of the transmission temperature, which Ryan later told me was the most common search for owners of 200 Series. I also discovered you can set the screen to monitor up to five parameters which you can check when driving. With a mount like a Quadlock you could view how things like transmission and coolant temperature change according to the driving conditions.

I can see the Autophix is going to be a handy tool when travelling, both to monitor engine condition and to understand error codes. Being able to clear a minor code and get moving could be a game changer and the Outback 9360 can scan other vehicle brands for engine and transmission errors. 

The Outback 9630 scanner for Toyota is $339 from A247 — head here to check it out

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