Let's face facts: Speed traps are a reality that suck the life out of your fun. A Corvette, by its very factory-derived purpose, just begins to enjoy life at the posted speed limit. Avoidance of speeding tickets is critical to keeping your license and retaining less than astronomical insurance premiums. So, in reality, a radar detector should be standard equipment on your car, right?
The K40 1000 and 2000 units are as close to a factory-installed radar-detection system as you will ever find. For those looking to install a high-quality radar detector that's virtually undetectable (especially if you plan on passing through Virginia, Washington, D.C., or any military base where radar detectors are illegal), the K40 Undetectable Radar system is one of the best on the market at avoiding false alarms and quickly finding speed traps.
The K40 system incorporates radar components mounted in the front and rear of your vehicle that are hardwired into your Corvette. A series of interior-mounted indicator lights is used to inform the driver where the radar beams are emanating from-the front or rear of the vehicle (2000 unit only). All three of the most common police radar types are detected with different audible sounds generated by the K40 to let the driver know if they are X, K, or Ka (instant-on) radar beams. In addition, there is a city mode of operation for the system that filters out most of the common false alarms. The filter can be turned off when driving on highways to give the earliest possible warning to the driver of impending radar speed traps.
As any radar aficionado knows, the X radar beams are the most common and easiest to elude. These are the "constant-on" radar beams that can often be detected several miles from their source. For the X-type radar, the K40 system alerts the driver with a simple tweet. For the K-band, the sound is a tweet. The dangerous Ka-band instant-on radar is the scariest of all radars. The K40 alerts the driver with a loud beep, then an irritating and distinct buzz. As you come closer to the source of the radar, the audio tone will increase in frequency until it becomes a solid tone, then it decreases as you pass the source. The red indicator light passes from the front source light to the rear source light during this process as well (K40 2000 model units only). A volume knob on the activation unit allows you to adjust the audio alerts.
This K40 installation is an elaborate one. The system becomes virtually part of your vehicle, but can be removed if the car is sold or returned off lease. We recommend that most owners have the K40 professionally installed to ensure that it is mounted properly and works to manufacturer specs. Our system was installed on an '03 Z06 Corvette by Jason Miller, who works at Mobile Electronics in Columbus, Ohio, (our thanks to Manager Matt Rafeld). Visually, the K40 requires the mounting of two black boxes, front and rear, in the bottom edge of your license plate. The LED lights can be placed within driver view in a variety of interior locations, either on the dashboard or mounted with Velcro strips to other interior placements such as above the sunvisor. In our case, the warning lights were mounted high and the control unit mounted beside the driver's right knee discreetly wedged between the carpet and tunnel molding. The K40 allows the driver to design the system that best fits his or her need.
Our driving experience with the K40 has been a good one. While car owner Jim Wirth has experienced a few false alarms in city driving, the system worked well and announced numerous speed traps during his road-testing efforts. He was happy with the limited number of actual modifications that were required to integrate the system to the car, a vehicle that will ultimately be returned off lease in the near future.
In case you haven't seen the advertising claims, K40 has a special offer that's included with the sale of the K40 Undetectable Radar system: If you receive a radar speeding ticket and you have registered with K40 prior to the incident, the company will pay your speeding fine, regardless of the cost. Obviously if the ticket involves a DWI or DUI or took place in a school zone, this offer does not apply. But for all other incidents, the company stands behind the fact that the K40 will warn you of radar speed traps.
Also, the company believes that when you hear the K40 radar detector informing you of a radar speed trap, you will slow down if you are exceeding the speed limit. K40 is betting that a personal discussion with an officer of the law over your rate of speed is not high on your list of fun activities for the afternoon. Hey, if you're that desperate for company, try a dating service.