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BlackboxMyCar | Dash Cam Installation: 2013 Mini Cooper S x BlackVue DR970X-2CH + BlackVue B-130X Battery Pack - - BlackboxMyCar

BlackboxMyCar | Dash Cam Installation: 2013 Mini Cooper S x BlackVue DR970X-2CH + BlackVue B-130X Battery Pack

This photo blog will show how we installed a BlackVue DR970X-2CH 2-Channel and the Power Magic Ultra Battery B-130X into a 2013 Mini Cooper S. If you're considering installing a dash cam, we recommend the Blackbox MyCar Essential Install Kit. The BlackboxMyCar Essential Install Kit comes with a circuit tester, trim remover tool, and other handy tools to make the hardwiring and installation process more manageable.

BlackVue has set a new standard for 4K UHD video quality with its fourth-generation dash cam, the BlackVue DR970X. This model improves upon its predecessors and offers exceptional video quality. While the BlackVue DR970X-2CH appears similar to previous models, it boasts advanced features that make it stand out.

We installed the BlackVue DR970X-2CH and B-130X battery pack in this Mini Cooper S.

If you're upgrading from the DR900X Plus to the DR970X, you can easily reuse your existing power cable and rear camera coaxial cable - all you have to do is replace the cameras.

Step 1: Find the best location to store the battery pack

We kept the BlackVue B-130X battery pack underneath the front passenger seat.

The BlackVue Power Magic Ultra B-130X Battery measures 152.7 mm x 206 mm x 33.6 mm (6.01in x 8.11in x 1.32in), slightly larger than the BlackboxMyCar PowerCell 8. For this installation, we stored the battery pack underneath the passenger seat. The inner fuse panel in this Mini Cooper S is located in the passenger side footwell, so storing the battery pack underneath the passenger seat will make it easier to run the power cables.

If you need a slimmer battery pack, we recommend the BlackboxMyCar PowerCell 8.

Step 2: Hardwiring the battery pack to the car’s fuse panel

Always refer to your vehicle’s owner’s manual.

The fuse box in the Mini Cooper S is under the black plastic cover in the passenger footwell.

The BlackVue B-130X hardwiring kit is a 2-wire cable, one for ACC (ignition-based power) and the other for ground. To connect the battery pack to the car’s fuse panel, you need to look for an empty fuse slot or one that can be piggybacked off of using the add-a-fuse kit that comes in the BlackboxMyCar Essential Install Kit. Use the circuit tester in the Essential Install Kit to find a suitable continuous power fuse less than 10A. Always refer to the Fuses section in the vehicle's owner's manual to avoid any fuse slots reserved for safety features within the car.

Once hardwired, the BlackVue B-130X battery pack will recharge when the ignition is turned on, and the dash cam will be able to draw power from the battery pack to run parking mode when the car is powered down.

Dash Cam Tips

The BlackVue B-130X battery pack has hardwiring and 12V power cables. The 12V power cable allows you to use the cigarette lighter socket in your car to charge the battery pack. But do keep in mind that the 12V cigarette lighter power cable installation method may not be compatible with all vehicles due to insufficient power draw. In cases like this, we recommend only using the hardwiring cable for your installation.

Dash Cam Tips

The BlackVue B-130X battery pack has hardwiring and 12V power cables. The 12V power cable allows you to use the cigarette lighter socket in your car to charge the battery pack. But do keep in mind that the 12V cigarette lighter power cable installation method may not be compatible with all vehicles due to insufficient power draw. In cases like this, we recommend only using the hardwiring cable for your installation.

Step 3: Mount the BlackVue DR970X-2CH front camera

The ideal place for a dash cam is behind the rearview mirror.

Before mounting the front camera, ensure the microSD card is inserted into the dash cam. All BlackVue dash cams come with a microSD card inside the box, so you don’t have to worry about forgetting to purchase one.

The optimal location to mount the forward-facing camera on a vehicle is behind the rearview mirror, as it is out of the driver's line of sight and does not obstruct the view while driving. The BlackVue’s signature slender cylindrical shape makes their dash cams easy to position the front camera behind the rearview mirror.

Remember to check the reach of the wiper blade, as mounting the camera above the wiper's reach will result in a blocked view. Mount the camera in a spot that provides a clear view of the windshield. Clean the inside of the windshield before mounting the dash cam to ensure proper adhesion of the camera and to eliminate any marks or smears that may affect the video quality.

Step 4: Tuck the power cables from the headliner to the battery pack

Use the provided trim removal tool to gently pull back the headliner and panel covers.

Because the battery pack is under the center console, you will guide the dash cam power cable along the headliner, down the passenger side A-pillar, and across the floor to the battery pack. You can easily hide the power cable by tucking it into the headliner using the pry tool or a credit card. The BlackVue DR970X-2CH has some cable clips that you can stick to your trim or windshield to help keep the cables in place.

Take your time when popping open the A-pillar - it's pretty straightforward but requires patience as you do not want to break any of the clips holding it. Once the A-pillar cover is removed, you can route the cable behind the airbag apparatus, or else your wire will be in the way, which could lead to a dangerous result if the bags go off.

Step 5: Connect the front camera to the battery pack

The DR970X dash cam will connect to the B-130X battery pack using the dash cam’s 12V power cable and the battery pack’s socket output cable. Simply plug one end of the dash cam’s 12V power cable into the DR970X and the other to the battery pack’s socket output cable.

Step 6: Run the rear camera connecting cable to the rear of the vehicle

Run the rear camera connecting cable along the A-B-C pillars to the rear windshield.

Connect the rear camera cable to the front unit using the coaxial cable. Then, route the coaxial cable along the headliner and A-pillar. Continue routing the coaxial cable in the weatherstripping above the door, along the length of the car (through the B and C pillars).  

Continue routing the cable up to the hinge opening. This Mini Cooper has a liftgate and the best way is to thread the cable through the rubber grommets between the chassis and the liftgate. You may want to remove the back panel cover for better access. Removing any trim on the liftgate can also help to conceal the cable. Also, remove the snap-in top cover so you can route wires the rest of the way to the rear cam location. Extra wire can be tucked into the right side of the hinge hole - leave room for the hinge when it closes.

Installation Tips

Examine the liftgate for 1 or 2 hoses that connect to it and lightly press on them to determine which one has more flexibility to run the cable through before attempting to thread the wire.

Installation Tips

Examine the liftgate for 1 or 2 hoses that connect to it and lightly press on them to determine which one has more flexibility to run the cable through before attempting to thread the wire.

Step 7: Power on the battery pack and dash cam.

Connect the coaxial cable to the rear camera and turn on the car to power up the BlackVue B-130X battery pack and the DR970X-2CH dash cam.

You will hear a greeting prompt from the device. Download and install the BlackVue app on your smartphone if you haven't already. Enable the built-in WiFi on the dash cam and connect to it using the app to check and adjust the angles of both the front and rear cameras if necessary. Utilize the Live View feature to verify the angles of the front and rear cameras and make any necessary adjustments.

Step 8. Clean it up.

Now that our cameras are installed, and the wires are well-kept, let's return to the fuse box to clean up the wires. You can use electrical tapes to keep the cables bundled up, close them and put the cover back.


And there you have it, a BlackVue DR970X-2CH dash cam installed in a 2013 Mini Cooper S, along with the BlackVue B-130X battery pack. The installation took a little over an hour, including routing the cables, hardwiring to the vehicle’s fuse panel, and checking the front and back cameras using the mobile app viewer.

Hardwire dash cam installation guide

Planning on installing a dash cam in your car? Check out our Step-by-Step Dash Cam Installation Guide  and our selection of handy installation accessories. And if you ever need a hand during the installation process, just call us; our dash cam specialists are available to help!

Looking to have your dash cam professionally installed, we do offer installation services at our Richmond BC location.

Please see some of our other dash cam installations in the BlackboxMyCar Dash Cam Installation Gallery.

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