2003 Infiniti Qx4 - R.I.P.
I got my 03 Infiniti Qx4 in February of 2003. At the time, I was on a co-op/internship with IBM in NC. While browsing some Nissan/Infiniti forums, I came across someone with a carputer in the same area (Durham/Chapel Hill). His installation gave me the inspiration to start my own project.
I started researching online and gathering parts. I eventually found mp3car.com, and I was frequent visitor and quite active on the forums. It was bit nerve racking to start modifying my new car, but by early Spring, I had my carpc functional. During my spare time between work and college, I started the long process of tweaking, ironing out the quirks, and making it look clean and stealthy. It was frustrating at times, but I definitely enjoyed it.
7" Xenarc TouchScreen
mATX Motherboad w/ P4 2.4Ghz and 512 DDR
160GB 7200RPM 3.5"
SB Audigy II
ATI Radeon DDR
Wireless Internet with Sprint Vision
GPS w/ CoPilot
RF Compact Keyboard & Trackball
Stock Steering Wheel controls via PAC SWI-X
Alpine F540 Amp
Brutus Hifonics BX1500D Sub Amp
Polk Momo 12" w/ Plexi Enclosure
Infinity Components in the front
Alpine Type-Rs in the rear
1 Amp is concealed behind the left panel in the cargo area, and the other is concealed in a storage pocket under the cargo area carpet. The computer folds into the storage pocket on the right. I ran cables along the passenger side from front to back for vga, usb, etc. The screen is mounted flush to the opening of the original 6cd in dash head unit. To fill the empty space between the screen opening, I used some brushed aluminum colored plastic/vinyl.
The pics are a little out of date. I concealed the rest of the wires. I also modified a switch plate in the front center console to make a usb port, which I used for connecting my Sprint phone and IPod syncing.
R.I.P - Rest in Peace
On January 22, 2005, I was moving back to RTP, NC from Atlanta to start my next Spring semester internship with IBM. The weather and road conditions got worse as I made my way into NC. It was below freezing with light rain and sleet. There were many wrecks along the highway.
While passing through Burlington, NC, there was a wreck on the opposite side of the highway, so traffic on our side also increased. It was a 4 lane road, and I was traveling in the 3rd lane from the right shoulder. All of a sudden, I lose control of my SUV, and it started sliding/spinning. I slid perpendicular to the highway and was now facing the right shoulder crossing over the 3 lanes. I looked to the right to see oncoming traffic. Through my passenger side rear window, I see the grill of an 18 Wheeler truck only inches away from my car. He slams his brakes and sound his horn, but there is nothing he nor I can do to avoid the collision.
There were a few other cars involved, but noone was hurt. The exact reason for the wreck was not determined, but it was weather related and no one was at fault.
My car took alot of damage along the passenger side. Doors, frame, fenders, etc along the side were all damaged. The front bumper and rear lift gate also took some damage. The side air bags also deployed. Even parts of the computer were smashed, but fortunately nothing major and it still worked for the most part. Surprisingly, the car was still driveable too, and I was able to finish the 45min (usually 30 or less) leg to my new apartment. Intially, we thought it was repairable, but after a few weeks at the body shop, it was declared a total loss. It will be sent to the salvage yard.
Its an unfortunate circumstance, but I consider myself very lucky for making it out with no injuries. It could've been a whole lot worse.
I also wanted to thank everyone that helped make my carputer a reality. This forum proved very useful.