Since I bought my focus I was thinking about fitting cruise control. Some may say it is not necessary, but I find it very useful on long motorway trips.
Started searching for info on the internet and here are the results.
Before buying any parts there is few things to check:
1. GEM number – according to info I have it must end with DX (where X could be any letter - A,B or any other), for example 4M5T-14A073-DW. I have read about another person who has successfully added Cruise Control to their Ford with a "C" GEM, but it was only one case and I am not 100% sure about it. You can read the GEM number on the sticker on the other side of fuse box.
2. Check the GEM connector 103 – blue one with two rows of wires, located on the left next to fuses – if it has brown wire attached to pin 10 and white wire attached to pin 18.
3. Check steering wheel clock spring connector if it has 6 wires – two are for the horn, two for the airbag and the two mentioned above are for the cruise control. To do this you have to remove steering column cover. The upper part has two hooks – you can see them when you turn steering wheel 90 degrees right and left. Release them and remove the cover.
The lower part is fixed with two Torx 25 screws, but first you have to remove the radio steering controls.
The Connector is under steering column just behind steering wheel.
4. Check if there are two switches present on the brake pedal as pictured below (black and blue).
And also check if there is a switch present on clutch pedal (black, and of course only manual transmission).
A Ford dealer mechanic informed me, that he has never seen a car without them fitted, but it is better to check your specific model before continuing.
The next thing to do is to find a Ford dealer which will activate cruise control in our car and this might be the hard part. I did it while I was abroad on holidays so unfortunately I can’t recommend any dealer’s in the UK that would carry out this service. It might be worth asking some Ford specialist / independent garage as well.
It is necessary to connect the car to IDS and activate / program cruise control in GEM module, the PCM module (engine control system) and instrument cluster (cruise control will work without it, but there will be no control light when CC is on).
If your car is currently equipped with a 4 spoke steering wheel then you just need to purchase a replacement 4 spoke wheel that has the cruise control buttons attached, it is not necessary to purchase a second airbag unit.
Please note: The steering wheel with CC from the Ford c-max is not suitable for the focus.
If your car has 3 spoke steering wheel like mine was, then the airbag will not fit 4 spoke one directly. But fortunately you don’t have to buy new airbag; you can simply get an airbag cover for the 4 spoke steering wheel. This is a genuine Ford part and the airbag will be fully functional with the replacement cover fitted.
Do not bother asking your dealer for this cover because it is not listed as separate part.
Instead go to e-bay for example see this link:
Before you start this modification and remove the airbag from the wheel it is recommended to disconnect battery.
Remove steering column cover to get some space. Time to remove airbag – there are 3 holes in steering wheel from column side.
Start from the side, turn wheel for easier access, slide flat short screwdriver all the way in (1), than twist it (2) and at the same time pull the airbag.
Turn the steering wheel and repeat with two remaining hooks. When the airbag is unhooked disconnect the plug and connector as seen in the image below:
Now easy part – unplug remaining connector, unscrew (key 27 as far as I remember) and change steering wheel. Then tight the screw, plug connector and it’s done.
Fitting the airbag is very easy – plug in the connectors, put airbag in place and push it.
If you need to change the airbag cover you will have to damage the old one, unfortunately there is no easy way to remove it and there is a risk of damaging the airbag. I found the easiest option was to cut it in pieces and remove in sections, avoiding any damage to the airbag unit.
Once the old cover has been removed from the airbag unit, put new one in place over the airbag and push hard.
I changed the cover after CC activation just in case it would fail and I wanted to fit back my 3 spoke steering wheel. To avoid airbag fault light on the connectors were plugged and the airbag was fittied with some tape in order to get to the dealer and back home.
All together it took me around one hour to change steering wheel, most of the time I spent trying to figure out how to remove the airbag unit itself.
All you have to do now is to contact your local Ford dealer and activate CC. In my case it took them about one hour to do this.
Unfortunately I can’t exactly say how much money you will have to spend. I did this modification while I was on holiday abroad, the local dealer there had no problems with the LHD car, but not every Ford dealer wants to do this because “This is against Ford policy”.
Parts bought over the internet and dealer labour costs were probably cheaper than in UK:
- used steering wheel with CC in “like new” condition – 28.00 GBP
- new airbag cover for 4 spoke steering wheel – 18.00 GBP
- activation – 37.00 GBP
Source of information and some of the photos:
Thank you for reading, I hope my guide is of help to others and should you have any questions please feel free to ask.
Huge thanks to Lenny for help editing this guide.