Report from our customer on the installation of the Altox Wbus-4 GSM module to control Webasto module in Volkswagen Touran 2012

This photo report covers the upgrade and revamp of the default Webasto auxiliary heater for a 2012 Volkswagen Touran into a full-featured starting pre-heater.

Back story

I am used to driving a gas car with an alarm system with remote start. It is very convenient in winter. You wake up, start the car, have a cup of tea, get into a warm car and drive to office in a good mood. Well, you really can get used to good stuff easily. But I sold my Toyota and purchased a 2012 Touran TDI with a default auxiliary heater.
It is no secret that diesel cars' engines take time to heat up, and in winter is might refuse to start up at all, that's why you can often find default auxiliary heaters in such cars. But you can't control such auxiliary heaters remotely, and it can only be started automatically along with the engine and only if the temperature is below +5C. This is a problem and I dived into finding a solution.

After I have gone through Touran dedicated forum ( it seemed to me that there are no simple solutions. It looked like I had to surgically handle the heater, upgrade certain controllers, maybe buy additional modules and deal with other challenges. That was a very sad outcome.
I started additional research via search engines. There were new options, from Starline alarm systems to various specialized pre-heater control systems, such as Sobr GSM but it still looked like I will have to use my "surgery" skills and upgrade some of the controllers.
Additionally, I found out that it will be extremely challenging to start up the pre-heater remotely. I would have to buy several relays modules, deal with controllers-pre-heater connection, and the the pre-heater- climate system connection. While doing all this I had to keep in mind that the battery should not run down as it was supposed to start the car as well. Theoretically, I could install the second battery to support all of this, then the main one would not be involved. But that would have been really too much.
Finally, when I almost gave up because of despair and outrage, I came across a product created by Belarus inventors and engineers – Altox WBUS-4. It turned out to be a very user-friendly and cool GSM control module to control the Webasto module.

It can be installed with just one wire into the auxiliary heater's outlet and controls the module via a GSM SIM card.

At first, I did not believe this was even possible because most solutions described complicated procedures and required a lot of investments. But then I found reports and forum threads of Touareg and similar cars' owners proving that the system works.
It turned out that the Altox module can switch the heater on and off via a text message (SMS), voice menu or a web server. Even the official Webasto app does not provide all of this. Additionally, it provides diagnostics features for scanning errors and unblocking the heater via a phone! Perfect!
The manufacturer helped me find a dealer in Moscow and they recommended local specialists for me. We discussed everything, made an appointment, and – here I come!

Volkswagen Touran 2012 2.0 TDI + Webasto Thermo Top VEVO heater

To get the access to the heater in Touran we should remove the front bumper. To do this, we unscrew a few screws.

We connect a computer and see there is an overheating error and blocking.

Looking at the pump, we understand that it is as good as dead. It is absolutely toast.

We install a new pump; change the wiring and the connector.

Then we check how the auxiliary heater is functioning. Everything is great!!
We connect the wire.

Then we unscrew the fuse panel.

We pull the wire to the car's interior through default places.

We unpack the device and refine the SIM card (subject to requirements for convenience).

We pull the wire into the car's interior. We connect the Altox module via a 5A fuse, and install it on the fuse panel using adhesive fastener.

We put everything in place in the car's interior and adjust the bumper.
Then there are a few simple phone tasks. You should set it up and register the user's phone with the Altox module to enable controlling via a voice menu. Everything is described in a clear and understandable manner in the manual. There is only one page.


We could upgrade an auxiliary Webasto heater into an autonomous Webasto pre-heater with the remote control via a phone using a GSM channel. Everything was easy, fast and relatively budget-friendly.
Now I am happy and satisfied, and I can:
- call Altox module's SIM card and choose to start/stop the pre-heater, request the balance of the status;
- control the module completely using text messages (SMS instructions);
- use a browser to control the pre-heater, including setting up heating schedule for a week!
What else do you need to be completely happy?