In this article, I will put together some scanners that allow Volkswagen, Audi, Skoda and Seat owners perform their own diagnostic and troubleshooting. Scanners in this article are more advanced than the Level 1 OBD2 scanner and provide access to several modules including the ECU. Plus most of these scanners allow you to program and code your Audi/VW the same way that the dealer can.
- Foxwell NT530 Full System VW Audi diagnostic scanner with special functions
Foxwell NT530 is compatible with 1996-2019 VW/Audi/Seat/Skoda vehicles sold worldwide. It has OBD diagnostic capability incl. read ECU info, Read codes, Erase codes, read live data, freeze frame, active test etc, also has special functions like DPF Regeneration, Oil Service Light Reset, Throttle Body Adjustment.
Foxwell NT530 can access to all control units incl. Electronic Control Unit (ECU), Engine, ABS, Airbag etc.
Foxwell NT530 VW Audi function list + car list:
Foxwell NT530 Pros:
1). VAGCOM / VAS5054A diag tools are laptop based and it’s a bit of a pain dragging the laptop out and waiting for it to boot up just to reset a service light or something, so having a standalone tool like Foxwell NT530 for quick & dirty diagnosis & resets would be pretty good.
2). Allowed to add up to 5 car brands or more if the space is big enough.
That will be very nice if you want to diagnose a new car in the future. Especially for those whose family has more than one car.
- XTOOL VAG401 Live Data OBD2 Audi VW Scan Tool ABS SRS and Oil Reset
XTOOL VAG401 is one of the best VW/Audi diagnostic tool supports all the OBD2 protocols, including the most popular like CAN, ISO9141, J1850, J1850 PWM and KWP2000.
With no built-in battery, the VAG401 draws power directly from the car battery. It comes on as soon as you plug it to the car’s OBD2 port.
Once connected, the scanner automatically runs diagnostics and displays trouble codes. It can read and erase codes from the engine, transmission, airbag, ABS and other available systems.
You can use this Audi and VW scan tool to check for I/M readiness. It will tell you whether there’s a problem in the emissions system and if the car will pass a smog test.
All the mentioned functions are great, but the ones that make this unit arguably the best VW scan tool or the best Audi scan tool relate to adaptation and coding. The device performs coding as well as throttle adaptation (throttle alignment), and it provides tips and procedures for performing adaptations and coding.
The XTOOL VAG401 is designed with the ordinary car owner in mind. It’s simple to use and comes with an affordable price tag.
Can retrieve immobilizer PIN codes
Can perform actuation tests in addition to live data stream.
Has memory card for easily updating software.
- It can’t display freeze frame data, the VAG401 does show live data. The latter is essential when you need to observe the real-time performance of monitors, sensors, and modules. Plus it provides helpful information regarding the health of the engine as well as fuel economy.
- Vident iLink400 full-system VW Audi SKODA SEAT Diagnostic and Coding Scan Tool
iLink400 VAG can perform full-system OBD diagnostic & service functions. It can read codes, freeze frame data, erase codes, ECU information, live data, Advanced ID, Active Test, Security Access (Login) etc.
It can access to full systems incl. Engine, Auto Trans, ABS Brakes, Steering Angle, Seat Mem. Pass, Auto HVAC, Cent. Elect. Digital Radio etc.
Not only works with the VAG car models, you can add up to 5 car brands or more (one for 70usd).
Plug and play without installing the driver on one computer which usually confuse some users.
3-years free update online.
Vident iLink400 VW Audi function list
incl. VW, VW CV, Skoda, Seat, Audi etc function list
Doesn’t support online programming.
- Autel MaxiDAS DS808 full system diagnostic tool
The Autel MaxiDAS is an excellent scanner which provides dealer lever troubleshooting and diagnostic for all cars including Audi and VW vehicles. It was easy to use and can read, clear and program most modules. This would be our number #1 choice if money was not a factor. The scanner can be upgraded for free for 1 year. After that, you will need to pay to update the software if you want coverage for newer models.
Autel MaxiDAS is one of the best scanners you can get. A great alternative to the popular Snap-On scanner. Many small independent repair shops use the Autel as the primary diagnostic tool.
Launch Creader VIII (CRP129) can read and clear codes from the engine control unit, ABS, Airbag, and transmission. Even though it has a limited module coverage, it works on most makes and models including domestic, European and Asian vehicles. If you work on multiple vehicles, this is a scanner worth considering.
To sum up:
Price: VAG 401 ($45)< Vident iLink400 ($139)< X431 Creader VIII ($188) < Foxwell NT530($189) < AUTEL MaxiDAS DS808 ($789)
For VW Audi Skoda Seat diagnosis: all okay
For VW Audi Skoda Seat coding and programming:
Foxwell NT530: coding and adaptation
Vident iLink400: basic, no online programming
AUTEL MaxiDAS DS808: advanced