APIM Firmware Upgrade

Hi All,

I have just done the upgrade to V3.4 on my Sync 3 (retrofitted in a MK3 Focus from Sync 1).

All looks good and what a great effort on the installer. Really easy to use. Keep up the great work.

Well I don’t get the Calm Screen so I guess my APIM firmware is too old. Anyway, I got the latest 2.4.3 version of Forscan and am willing to attempt the firmware upgrade (I am aware there is always a risk of this going wrong and being left with a not so insignificant bill). But I am willing to give it a try knowing the risks.

Before I go ahead, I just wanted to check everything is ok. I went in to the APIM firmware upgrade and got to the stage of download files (which it did successfully). Before I go on to the next stage, I just wanted to check that what I got was correct.


I have attached a screenshot above. The files it downloaded were:


I just wanted to ensure that these are the correct files and they are the only ones required (I know there has been some discussion regarding Forscan not downloading correct files etc).

If this is all correct, I assume I just now run a Test SBL and assuming that goes Ok then hit the program button?

Do I leave the ‘Force Program’ and ‘Cease activity on bus’ checkboxes ticked?

Also, how long, roughly, does the firmware update procedure take?

I know this is an open question, but what kind of percentage of these updates fail? Is it a very common thing or does it just happen once in a while. I will obviously connect my car to a battery charger before starting and keeping fingers crossed.

Many thanks in advanced for any help.

For your generation APIM (Sync 3 Gen 1 or 2) those are the correct files. The files below would be the original files for this generation release for the US, but you can see they are the same revisions. (-xA) The files FORScan shows should work fine. (FA is EU versions)

3.0 APIM Navigation Unit Firmware (Production Release) US Versions
(Originally Found On 2017/Some 2018 - Units That Ship with 2 USB Ports on Back)
GB5T-14G376-AA (SBL)
HB5T-14G374-CA (Strategy)
HB5T-14G375-CA (Calibration)
GB5T-14G379-AA (Sound)
HB5T-14G379-BA (Illumination)

Run the SBL to test. You don’t really need “force program” as the files are different, but use “Cease activity on bus”. This will cause various DTC’s which will need to be cleared after programming, be aware of that.

The programming takes a few minutes, maybe 15 or so. I’ve seen various times on different vehicles and adapters. Speaking of adapters: DO NOT USE BLUETOOTH or WIFI for module programming. Only use a quality USB adapter, like the OBDLink EX or equivalent.

Very few of the updates fail and brick the units. Most of the time, you will get a black screen on the first attempt, don’t be surprised. There is a specific way to do this:
Updating APIM Firmware (Calibration Files) - Ford / Sync 3 - CyanLabs Official Community

1 Like

If you manage to brick it, it isn’t the end of the world. It happened to me on m first flash of my APIM. I’ll copy and paste exactly what I did to get it recovered.

Ford Focus ACM dead after failed Calibration file write with IDS - FORScan forum

Many thanks for all your help.

Just one final question. After doing the download of files, the Forscan screen shows the below:


There is still a red square by the ECU Configuration/Illumination with no files shown, and the ECU Configuration/Sound doesn’t show anything before the download but now shows a file.

The obd scan tool I am using is an OBDLink EX101 and I have upgraded to the latest firmware available.

I only have 1 x USB port on the back of the APIM.

You really don’t need the sound or illumination files for this. (Those files rarely change.) The strategy and calibration are really what you want to focus on.

HS7T and 1 usb port is Gen 2. That’s good, they have better luck with the firmware update.

1 Like

Thank you.

So everything looks fine to go ahead and program as is (pending a successful Test SBL).

I assume that Forscan will just not bother doing anything with the red square item but will still attempt everything else.

One thing I kind of noticed from other APIM AsBuilts is that they seem to have blocks starting 7D0-08 and 7D0-09. Mine only goes up to 7D0-07-04. I assume the 08 and 09 are the sound and illumination files. So I don’t think I have any at all.


Sync 3 goes thru 7D0-07. You should have these addresses.

7D0-08 and 7D0-09 are additional programming features for the newer vehicles, about 2019+ or so, depending on model. There is really not much there you can use on a 2014 Focus.

Attached is an APIM spreadsheet which has all of it. You can see this also on this site, APIM Database.

APIM As Built Database.xlsx (64.1 KB)

1 Like

I have still not updated the firmware. I actually ordered UCDS from our friends in Russia so waiting for that to arrive first.

One of the comments I saw above was regarding the ‘Black Screen’ after updating
the firmware. It said ‘Don’t be surprised if you get this first time’. What is the black screen and what do you have to do to fix it if it happens?

The black screen seems to be a common thing and reloading the new Strategy file usually fixes it. Look on the UCDS forum, I think I saw it mentioned there.

Ok, so my UCDS arrived after over 3 weeks of ordering.

I plugged it in and ran the update wizard. When I selected Focus 2011-2015, it just puts an exclamation mark next to the APIM and basically says it cannot determine files. Then I remembered my APIM came from a 2016/2017 Focus so I selected the Focus 2015 in UCDS. It then said that the firmware was current so didn’t offer any upgrades.

Looks like UCDS was a bit of a waste of money as I actually get further with Forscan unless I am doing something wrong.

Any UCDS experts? I find UCDS very cryptic and unintuitive.