In-vehicle diagnostic systems built around SAE's Onboard Diagnostics (OBDII) and J1850 (Data Communication) standards have the potential to supply useful data to development engineers for the characterization of new components and systems. However, the OBDII network is geared toward post-assembly diagnostics, so data is not in a format easy to use by development engineers. This paper describes “off the shelf” data acquisition (DA) interface and software products that extract and manipulate information from a vehicle's data communication network. These products eliminate the need to develop the DA system and software from scratch. Examples of the products' use in typical automotive development projects also are described.