A Bluetooth diagnostic tool is a convenient and affordable way to monitor your vehicle’s health. Autel’s line of MaxiAP diagnostic tools offers a range of diagnostic and service functions and broad vehicle compatibility. This makes them very appealing options for both professional mechanics and home repair enthusiasts.
Comparing the Autel AP200, AP200M, and AP200H, you’ll see they’re similar in their design features. However, there are some critical differences between them, and each is targeted at a specific user type.
Want to know more? Let’s take a look at what each OBDII scan tool can do so you can better figure out which one is right for you.
Table of Contents
Autel AP200M Vs. Autel AP200H Vs. Autel AP200
|Weight||1.1 ounces||4 ounces||3 ounces|
|Dimensions||2.3” x 1.9” x 1”||6.4” x 4” x 1.4”||2.5” x 2” x 1”|
|Advanced service functions||8/10||5/10||1/10|
|Battery Maintenance (BMS)||✔||✔||✔|
|Vehicle Compatibility||OBD2 cars, SUVs, 12V trucks||OBD2 cars, SUVs, 12V trucks||OBD2 cars, SUVs, 12V trucks|
*Notes: Excellent: 9-10; Good: 7-8; Fair: 5-6; Poor: 3-4; Very poor: 1-2
All three of these devices use a similar operation. They plug into your OBD2 port and communicate via Bluetooth with diagnostic software on your phone or tablet, which allows you to diagnose and repair your vehicle’s issues without being tethered to the port by a cable.
Looking at the features, the Autel AP200, Autel AP200M, and Autel AP200H all provide full OBD2 functionality, which means you can read and clear codes, check I/M readiness. Also, you can view the live data or freeze frame data from modules.
It’s when you go beyond OBD2 that the differences become more apparent. Let’s dig a bit deeper so you can see what we mean.
Autel AP200M Vs. Autel AP200H Vs. Autel AP200: Key differences
Design and specifications
None of these devices are unusually large or bulky. While the Autel AP200 is the smallest and lightest of the three, none weigh more than a pound, and they’re all unobtrusive once you plug them into the OBD2 port
In terms of the Bluetooth connection, all three are stable when used up close. That said, the Autel AP200M provides the most stable connection when it’s capable of communicating with paired devices up to 30 feet away from the dongle.
Overall features and functions
The Autel AP200H offers a 4-system diagnosis in addition to its OBD2 functionality, including the engine, transmission, airbags, and anti-lock brakes. You can both retrieve trouble codes, view live data from the modules, and clear their respective dash warning lights.
With both the Autel AP200 and the Autel AP200M, you’ll get a full-system diagnosis of all your vehicle modules that are the four systems listed above, in addition to the chassis, HVAC system, battery, and more.
Health reports are another helpful diagnostic feature, letting you get a complete picture of your vehicle’s performance in one quick go. The AP200H has Health Check and Health Service applications to do this. That said, the Repair Report offered by the AP200M is more thorough and a better option for those seeking all-in-one diagnostic performance.
Extra features and functions
Repair functions are beneficial for DIYers, letting you do more in your home garage without paying a professional. You’ll get two extra functions with the Autel AP200H: oil light reset and battery maintenance service reset. It covers all the systems with dash warning lights but doesn’t go beyond them.
If you’re looking for the most robust service functions, the AP200 is the one you want. Its impressive range of 25 service functions includes options you wouldn’t expect to find for the price, including injector coding and IMMO key programming.
Supported protocols and vehicle coverage
As long as your vehicle is OBD2-compliant, all the scan tools can work on your car. That said, the compatibility of individual system diagnoses and service functions can differ between them.
The Autel AP200 has the broadest support in this regard. It’s compatible with any vehicle made after 1996. With the Autel AP200H, you can diagnose and repair most OBD2 cars, though it does have some compatibility gaps. You can verify whether it will work with your vehicle on their website. You’ll also get broad compatibility from the Autel AP200M. Its vehicle support includes cars and trucks made by over 130 different manufacturers from around the world.
Software and updates
The software for the AP200 supports free lifetime updates for the first vehicle. You can download it on any iPhone or Android phone, though it’s unfortunately not compatible with tablets. If you need to add another car, you can do so for $21.99/year.
Tablet owners will appreciate that the AP200M is compatible with all iOS and Android devices, not just phones. The app is free for the first vehicle for the first year. After that, it’s $19.99 per year for each car you want to diagnose.
The AP200H package includes the MaxiAP200 app software free. Its built-in “Mall” function helps you download the software for your vehicle straight through the app. If you want to download software for additional vehicle models, you can do so with a one-time purchase of $15.99 per vehicle.
The Autel AP200H is recommended for beginners and everyday car owners who want to monitor their cars’ performance.
Both the Autel AP200M and the Autel AP200 offer the functions intermediate and advanced home mechanics need. With the Autel AP200 OBDII scan tool, you’ll even get some usually reserved features for professionals.
That said, we wouldn’t recommend these devices for professional mechanics. Since you have to pay extra for each vehicle you diagnose, those costs will add up fast in professional garages.
- How can I tell if the AP200, AP200M, or AP200H is compatible with my vehicle?
Autel has a full compatibility list on their website (find it here). You can check both the device’s general compatibility and the specific compatibility of each function and feature.
2. Do these devices turn off when the vehicle is turned off, or will they continue to drain the battery?
They turn off automatically when the car is powered down. You can leave them plugged into your OBD2 port full-time without worrying about the power draining.
3. Do I need to purchase vehicle-specific software to use the Autel MaxiAP AP200H?
Suppose you want to use the health report and service functions, yes. However, you can use this device as an OBD2 scanner and code reader even if you haven’t purchased the vehicle’s associated software.
4. Will the AP200 work for vehicles made in 1995 or earlier?
Unfortunately, no. Vehicles made before 1996 use the OBD1 diagnostic system, and they have a different diagnostic port style. The AP200 is an OBD2 scan tool built to fit the diagnostic ports on vehicles made after 1996.
5. Can these devices be used while you’re driving?
Yes. That’s one of the significant advantages of a Bluetooth dongle since you can easily continue to collect and review engine data without worrying about a cable that could get in your way while you’re driving.
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