Thanks for the info. I'll have to take a look. I have the SOS button, but I don't use BMW assist. I checked the iDrive Wikipedia and I believe it refers to the new system as CIC-high. Is this a correct statement? Is like to have some of those features.In a '09 with CIC you probably have a MULF unit in the trunk that handles the USB input (Option 6FL) bluetooth, and a few other media options. If you've got BMW assist there is probably a second box (TCU) next to the MULF which handles telematics. Starting in 2011, BMW replaced the MULF (and TCU) with a single unit called the COMBOX which adds a few cool features like enhanced bluetooth (audio streaming), connected drive, BMW apps, album art on media playback, and the ability to have multiple USB devices connected.
It's amazing how sophisticated BMWs are. It's like comparing a brand new MacBook to a Palm Pilot. I'm happy that nothing crazy has gone wrong with the super high tech electronics on this thing (knock on wood), but I can only imagine the nightmare and cost associated.
While I intend on purchasing a new car to replace this e60, probably not a BMW unless I go with an X3/5 diesel, nothing else will ever compare to the technological finesse the BMW has developed. There's so many features and programmable options in this car that you'd never even know exist. Residual heat- why don't all cars have this?