Backup-Reverse Camera

Adding a backup camera to my X5 was something I considered a requirement since it doesn’t have the best field of view trying to back into tight spots.

This is what I went with :

Works great in general and does great low light at night.

I mounted mine in the lip above the tag. Its to the right of the tag light on the passenger side of the lip. Either side works that’s just where I put mine.

So here is how to install the camera….

First you need run the cable into the hatch rubber boot to get it into the vehicle itself. I always start with this since the boot can be a royal pain in the arse. If you get this part done in my opinion your home free.

So pry GENTLY on the side of the boot to work it out. This boot has all of the cables in it that go from the body into the hatch itself. Remember this thing is old by now and will rip easily if you are not careful.

Once the boot is removed run the black video/power(its all inside that one cable on mine) cable thru the boot from the hatch side. This was a royal pain.



This is what you should see once you have the cable run through.


Next remove the plastic trim from the passenger side of the hatch area. There are clips that pop off as you do this. These are very fragile so be careful when removing.



Run the camera cable down through this so that it comes out in the fuse compartment area.



Now go back to the hatch area and remove the plastic trim from around the outside of the hatch (passenger side) so that you can tuck the cable inside of this cover.

You need to snake the wire into the area where the hatch lock is.

I don’t have a good step by step set of pictures of this since it was dark and I was alone while doing this. So I’m going to just put three pictures in this spot that should show what your up against.

Notice the small hole drilled into the hatch itself with the cable coming thru. Thus kept the cable from being pinched like it would of been if I ran it through from the factory opening. I think this is the better method since it will make the cable last longer.

The camera plugs into the harness itself very close to the camera so if you need to you can remove it without cutting anything in the future.



Once you reinstall all of the covers and put the torx screws back into the tag light/handle lip you now need to wire the camera in. Sorry I don’t have better step by steps on this but I was dead tired at this point since I had tried several other mounting methods before this and it took all day and most of the night. Using this method it should be installable in about 60 minutes.

For the wiring I did everything at the seicanes harness plug where it connects to the factory harness at the old radio module in the bottom of the hatch area.

The video plug part plugs into the seicane provided rca plug and the power and ground I tapped right at this plug too. I used the same wire that turns the amp on to power the camera. The reason for this was to allow me to use the camera when not in reverse.


I still need to get all of that straw vacuumed out. I guess one of the previous owners had a farm???


One last thing that I have mentioned a few times but needs to be all over these instructions. DO NOT buy the seicane factory bmw camera. They have other cameras that could work but the one that shows to be the special factory camera will not fit our e53’s.

I have a pile of these cameras from different companies. The only thing I have found they fit are the cars that the tag light goes directly into the trunk lid itself. If it has a shelf that bolts on like the e53 or e46 they will not fit without extensive modification. Ive done it before but to me its just not worth the effort in the matter to do again.


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