For a research study purpose, I am trying to get car's performance data i.e. speed, acceleration, maps (lats & longs) and may be braking during a drive. I need time histories of these parameters. What is the simplest way for me to do that with “reasonable” accuracy and cost. It is important for me to overlay the data on some maps so that I know exactly what was my speed at what point on the road.

I was thinking one of these ways, but I am not sure if I am thinking in right direction. 1) Buy an OBD device and use that. I am not sure if it would export the raw data for me later. And not sure how to overlay GPS data here. 2)Use a cell phone app like speedometer etc. It gives average speed during a drive but again not sure if I will get time history. 3)Another app based method but extract directly accelerometer and gyroscope data and use that somehow to analyze the driving history.

Any suggestions?

  • "easiest and most accurate" both of these could involve spending a lot of money. How much are you willing to spend?
    – HandyHowie
    Oct 23, 2018 at 12:29
  • Well it is for research project so I can probably request some money from the grant but no budget set. Need to optimise between cost, accuracy and ease. I will welcome any suggestions though, even the expensive ones. I will at least know what is the “right” way.
    – PagMax
    Oct 23, 2018 at 12:40
  • It's impossible to answer this @PagMax, you haven't said how accurate the data needs to be. What is your tolerance for error?
    – GdD
    Oct 23, 2018 at 15:57
  • Fair point.m @GdD although I don’t have a quantification if error. All I can tell is accuracy is not super critical. It can be as accurate as cell phone sensors. As long as there is a representative picture of driving trend, I should be okay. I suppose I should not have included the word “accurate” in the question.
    – PagMax
    Oct 23, 2018 at 16:13

1 Answer 1


The easiest and most accurate thing you can do is buy something like a Racelogic data logger as it's a piece of hardware that's specifically designed for the exact purpose you describe.

  • Thanks. This is helpful but I think very expensive. I think I didn’t word my question correctly. I reworded it now. I need a simpler way with “reasonable” accuracy and cost. I know it may still sound vague but I am just trying to understand all the options.
    – PagMax
    Oct 23, 2018 at 16:16
  • Perhaps you should research some options so people don’t waste time with suggestions you then refuse...
    – Solar Mike
    Oct 23, 2018 at 16:40
  • This isn’t a shopping advice site. You might have some success checking to see if there are any raspberry pi based open source data loggers or you might find you are able to rent a unit or borrow one if you join your local Motorsport club. Oct 23, 2018 at 16:49
  • This looks like an option; autosportlabs.com/keeping-promises Oct 23, 2018 at 16:51
  • 1
    @SteveMatthews yes your answer was exactly what I asked for. (And accepted now!) Only when you answered, I realised I didn’t ask the right question because I did not even know something like that would exist. It was my mistake but I think I still learnt something and in that sense, it answers my query. Thanks again
    – PagMax
    Oct 24, 2018 at 14:23

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