5 Best Dash Cams for a BMW (+ How to Pick One)

5 Best Dash Cams for a BMW in 2023 (+ How to Pick One)

If you have a few years of experience behind the wheel, you’ve probably learned that the roads can be unpredictable.

From those unexpected fender-benders to that time a bird decided your car was the perfect target, you’ve probably also had your share of “I wish I caught that on camera” moments.

And that’s where dash cams come into play.

In this article, we have compiled a list of the best dash cams for your BMW.

If you’re just looking for a quick recommendation, here’s a sneak peek:

Value Pick
Best Pick
Budget Pick
4.4
4.1
4.3
$169.99
$294.99
$45.99
Pros:
  • Made to fit BMW vehicles
  • No dangling wires & OEM appearance
  • Straightforward installation
  • Clear 4K video quality
  • View footage through an app
Pros:
  • Crystal-clear video quality
  • View movie clips from your iPhone
  • Records exact GPS coordinates and G-force measurements
  • Straightforward installation
  • Automatically switches to parking mode
  • Real-time notifications and remote access
Pros:
  • Excellent value for its price
  • Access recordings via the app
  • Doesn't obstruct the driver's view
  • Easy to install
  • 24-hour parking mode with collision detection and time-lapse recording
  • Automatically saves footage during sudden shakes
Cons:
  • Provided SD card isn't the best quality
  • Doesn't record the vehicle's speed
  • Doesn't stamp location data on recordings
Cons:
  • Possible discrepancies in the recorded speed
  • Continuous use can drain the vehicle's battery
  • Cloud service requires portable Wi-Fi
  • High price point
Cons:
  • Camera's Wi-Fi can interfere with other devices
  • The app requires close proximity to the camera to access footage
  • A separate hardwire kit is required to utilize the 24-hour parking mode
Value Pick
4.4
$169.99
Pros:
  • Made to fit BMW vehicles
  • No dangling wires & OEM appearance
  • Straightforward installation
  • Clear 4K video quality
  • View footage through an app
Cons:
  • Provided SD card isn't the best quality
  • Doesn't record the vehicle's speed
  • Doesn't stamp location data on recordings
Best Pick
4.1
$294.99
Pros:
  • Crystal-clear video quality
  • View movie clips from your iPhone
  • Records exact GPS coordinates and G-force measurements
  • Straightforward installation
  • Automatically switches to parking mode
  • Real-time notifications and remote access
Cons:
  • Possible discrepancies in the recorded speed
  • Continuous use can drain the vehicle's battery
  • Cloud service requires portable Wi-Fi
  • High price point
Budget Pick
4.3
$45.99
Pros:
  • Excellent value for its price
  • Access recordings via the app
  • Doesn't obstruct the driver's view
  • Easy to install
  • 24-hour parking mode with collision detection and time-lapse recording
  • Automatically saves footage during sudden shakes
Cons:
  • Camera's Wi-Fi can interfere with other devices
  • The app requires close proximity to the camera to access footage
  • A separate hardwire kit is required to utilize the 24-hour parking mode
11/30/2023 07:29 pm GMT

Without further ado, let’s get into the details!

The 5 best dash cams for BMWs

  1. BlackVue DR900X-2CH
    4.1
    $294.99

    The BlackVue DR900X-2CH dash cam ensures top-notch video clarity with its 4K UHD recording and a wide 162-degree view angle, complemented by seamless connectivity options.

    Pros:
    • Delivers crystal-clear video quality
    • View movie clips from your iPhone
    • Records exact GPS coordinates and G-force measurements
    • Straightforward installation
    • Automatically switches to parking mode when the ignition is turned off.
    • Stay informed with real-time notifications and remote access
    Cons:
    • Some users have pointed out discrepancies in the speed displayed in the recordings
    • Continuous use can drain the vehicle's battery if not managed properly
    • The promoted cloud service requires portable Wi-Fi
    • Higher price point
    Buy Now Read Reviews on Amazon

    We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

    11/30/2023 07:23 pm GMT
  2. Fitcamx 4K Dash Cam
    4.4
    $169.99

    The Fitcamx 4K Dash Cam is designed specifically for BMWs, offering a seamless OEM look. With 4K video quality, integrated WiFi, and a user-friendly app, it captures clear footage and allows easy wireless access to recordings.

    Pros:
    • Many users mentioned that the installation took very little time
    • The dash cam integrates seamlessly with the car, giving it a factory-installed appearance
    • No dangling wires or out-of-place looks
    • Provides clear 4K video quality
    • Ability to view footage through an app
    Cons:
    • Some users reported that the SD card provided with the camera was not of good quality, leading to recording issues. They recommended purchasing a new card separately
    • A few users mentioned that the delivery took longer than expected
    • The camera doesn't display or record the vehicle's speed
    • Lacks GPS functionality to stamp location data on recordings
    Buy Now Read Reviews on Amazon
    11/30/2023 07:29 pm GMT
  3. REDTIGER Dash Cam Front & Rear
    4.4
    $149.99

    Capture every detail on the road with the REDTIGER 4K Front and Rear Dash Cam, featuring superior night vision, built-in GPS, and Wi-Fi connectivity.

    Pros:
    • Offers Ultra HD 4K front recording and FHD 1080P rear recording
    • Uses an advanced optical lens with HDR/WDR technology for superior night vision
    • Easily manage the dash cam via the "Redtiger" app
    • Records driving routes, real-time speed, and location
    • Includes Loop Recording, G-sensor collision detection, and 24-hour parking monitor
    • Backed by a 1-year warranty and 24/7 technical support
    Cons:
    • For continuous 24-hour recording in parking mode, an additional hardware kit is required
    • One reviewer pointed out that the camera doesn't use a true 4K sensor, which means the image is upscaled and might not be clear enough to read license plates of fast-moving cars
    • Some users found the Wi-Fi feature to be slow
    • The front camera cannot swivel 360 degrees
    Buy Now Read Reviews on Amazon
    11/30/2023 07:39 pm GMT
  4. Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2
    4.2
    $99.99

    The Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2 is a compact, car key-sized dash camera that discreetly mounts behind the rearview mirror. It offers 1080p video recording with Garmin Clarity HDR optics and features voice control and Wi-Fi connectivity.

    Pros:
    • Its car key-sized design makes it virtually unnoticed
    • Garmin is a well-known brand with a history of producing car products
    • The dashcam connects to the Garmin Drive app, which has high ratings on the iPhone App Store
    • Crisp details both day and night
    • Voice control lets users save videos and start/stop audio recording
    • Videos can be automatically uploaded via Wi-Fi for later viewing and sharing
    • Monitors activity around your parked vehicle
    • Access the camera remotely for live monitoring
    Cons:
    • Features like Parking Guard and Live View monitoring require the dash cam to have constant power and an active Wi-Fi connection
    • Due to its compact size, it lacks a built-in screen for immediate playback
    • Some users have reported issues with the app disconnecting from Wi-Fi frequently
    • While the daytime recording is decent, the night-time quality might not be up to par for some users
    Buy Now Read Reviews on Amazon
    11/30/2023 07:44 pm GMT
  5. 1080P Mini Front Dash Cam
    4.3
    $45.99

    This affordable 1080P Mini Front Dash Camera offers FHD recording with advanced features like built-in Wi-Fi, night vision, and a compact design.

    Pros:
    • Given its features and performance, many users feel that the camera offers excellent value for its price
    • Easily access live streams, download videos, and adjust settings via the dedicated app on Android or iOS devices
    • Doesn't obstruct the driver's view and is easy to install
    • 24-hour parking mode with collision detection and time-lapse recording
    • Automatically locks crucial footage during sudden shakes
    Cons:
    • Some users have reported that the camera's Wi-Fi can interfere with other devices
    • The app requires close proximity to the camera to access footage
    • A separate hardwire kit is required to utilize the 24-hour parking mode
    Buy Now Read Reviews on Amazon
    11/30/2023 07:49 pm GMT

How do you choose the best dash cam?

By now, you’ve got a good glimpse of some top dash cams out there.

But let’s take a step back: how do you choose the perfect dash cam for your BMW?

From my experience and countless hours comparing features, here’s a quick guide to make your decision a bit easier:

  1. Video Quality: This one’s a no-brainer. You’d want the footage to be sharp and clear. Higher-end models like the BlackVue DR900X-2CH offer 4K UHD, which can capture finer details like fast-moving license plates.
  1. Connectivity: We live in a connected world, right? Features like Wi-Fi and integrated apps (like the ones in Fitcamx or REDTIGER) allow you to quickly access and save recordings on the go.
  2. Integration and Aesthetics: If you’re driving a BMW, you probably care about looks. Choose a dash cam that integrates well with your car’s design. The Fitcamx dashcam is definitely a winner in this category.
  1. Night Vision and HDR: Driving isn’t limited to daylight hours. Ensure your dash cam can capture quality footage even in low light.
  2. GPS and Location Tagging: This can be especially handy in case of incidents or just to keep track of your routes.
  3. Parking Mode and G-Sensor: Having a cam that switches to parking mode ensures you capture incidents even when you’re away from the car. Also, a G-sensor can automatically lock vital footage during sudden movements or impacts.
  4. Reviews and Feedback: We can’t stress this enough: look at what other BMW owners are saying. Take note if there’s a consistent complaint about Wi-Fi issues or SD card problems.
  5. Budget: Last, but by no means least, factor in the cost. While it’s tempting to go for the high-end models, there are budget-friendly options (like the 1080P Mini Front Dash Cam) that offer excellent value for their price.

Is BMW Drive Recorder the same as a dashcam?

If you’ve been researching BMW accessories, you might have encountered the BMW Drive Recorder.

Now, you’re probably wondering, “Isn’t the Drive Recorder just BMW’s version of a dashcam?”

Well, yes and no. Let’s break it down.

What is BMW Drive Recorder?

The BMW Drive Recorder is an integrated feature available on certain BMW models equipped with the Parking Assistant Plus package.

Instead of being an aftermarket accessory, it utilizes the car’s built-in cameras to record video clips of its surroundings.

Handy, right?

BMW Drive Recorder vs. Dashcams

  1. Integration: The most significant advantage of the Drive Recorder is its seamless integration. There are no extra wires, no mounts, and no devices to stick on your windshield. Everything operates through the car’s existing systems.
  2. Video Quality: While the Drive Recorder offers decent video quality, most dedicated dash cams, especially the higher-end ones, have superior recording capabilities, with resolutions up to 4K UHD.
  3. Recording Duration: The Drive Recorder can only save 30 seconds before and after triggering events. In contrast, traditional dash cams offer continuous recording, with older footage being overwritten by new content (loop recording).
  4. Features: Dedicated dash cams often come with a suite of features. This includes Wi-Fi connectivity, smartphone app integration, night vision, and more. The Drive Recorder has a more limited feature set in comparison.
  5. Accessibility: Retrieving footage from the Drive Recorder involves accessing the car’s infotainment system, which might not be as intuitive as simply using an app or popping out an SD card, as you would with many dash cams.
  6. Coverage: The Drive Recorder can record 360-degree footage around the car, while most dash cams focus on only the front and rear.

So, which one is better?

Neither is inherently “better” – it’s more about what fits your needs.

If you’re looking for a hassle-free, integrated solution and don’t need prolonged recording, the BMW Drive Recorder might be your best bet.

However, if you want advanced features, extended recording times, and potentially better video quality, a dedicated dash cam could be the way to go!

Should you install a dash cam on a BMW?

BMW interior with an installed dash cam - cartoon style

Ah, the million-dollar question!

You’ve got yourself a BMW, and you’re debating whether adding a dash cam is a wise decision.

Let’s discuss the pros and cons:

Pros

  1. Evidence in Case of Accidents: This one’s the most apparent benefit. A dash cam records everything, so you have unbiased evidence if there’s ever an accident.
  2. Protection While Parked: As we’ve seen, some dash cams come with a parking mode. So if someone gives your BMW an unsolicited ‘love tap’ in the parking lot, you’ll know exactly who it was.
  3. Capture Beautiful Drives: A dash cam ensures you capture and relive those breathtaking drives.
  4. Lower Insurance Premiums: Some insurance companies offer discounts if you have a dash cam installed. It’s worth checking with your provider!
  5. Peace of Mind: Knowing that you’re always recording can give you that extra sense of security, especially when driving in unfamiliar or busy areas.
Benefit of adding a dash cam to a BMW - It captures everything - cartoon style

Cons

  1. Potential Distraction: Like any tech gadget, there’s a temptation to fiddle with settings, playback, or other features while driving.
  2. Installation Hassle: Some dash cams might require a more complex installation process. However, as we’ve explored earlier, there are plenty of user-friendly options.
  3. Aesthetic Concerns: Some might feel dash cams take away from the BMW’s luxurious interior. However, this concern can be mitigated with the right model and placement.
  4. Potential Battery Drain: Especially with dash cams that offer a parking mode, there’s a risk of draining the car’s battery if not set up correctly.
  5. Additional Costs: Of course, not getting a dash cam is cheaper!
Drawback of adding a dash cam to a BMW - It may drain your battery - cartoon style

Conclusion

So, why bother with a dash cam?

Well, in simple words, it’s like having a little buddy who’s always watching the road with you.

It’s there to have your back in case of any surprises, capture cool moments, and maybe even save you some bucks on insurance.

Now, I get it.

Choosing the right dash cam can feel like finding a needle in a haystack.

There are so many choices!

But don’t stress. Think about what you really want: Do you want high-quality videos? Or maybe you just want a little camera that doesn’t draw too much attention?

Let us know in the comments below which is your favorite!

Lastly, don’t forget to check out our other articles if you’re interested in BMW products:

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *