ASAM MCD-2 MC (aka ASAP2) defines the description format of the internal ECU variables used in measurement and calibration. Measurement & calibration systems (MC-systems) require this description for both the parameterization of scalar constants, curves and maps of the ECU software and for recording the system's response via measurement variables during real-time testing. The description contains information about data types, dimensions, record layouts and memory locations of ECU variables. The standard also describes how the variable values are converted into human-readable quantities and displayed in an MC-system.

The support for automotive-specific processes and working methods is one of the major strengths of ASAM MCD-2 MC. The standard defines extensive support for lookup tables (up to 5 dimensions) with static or calculated axis points and static, measured, or calculated calibration parameters.  Calibration and measurement variables can be hierarchically grouped via various means to support function-oriented calibration.

The standard allows to fully specify how data is displayed in an MC-system, independent from ECU-internal data formats. The data description is achieved via computation methods, format definitions and the definition of units. This approach has the advantage that calibration engineers can work with data formats that are understandable and meaningful to them. The standard furthermore allows the description of the memory segments in the ECU, including the description of their location inside the address space, the type of memory, and the access method.

The standard also describes the device interface between the MC-system and the ECU for read and write access. As a result, the ASAM MCD-2 MC description contains all information in one place for access, modification, interpretation, and display of ECU-internal variables.

The data description is written in a structured ASCII format (*. a2l), which can be easily parsed and imported. The BOM mechanism (byte order mark) permits the use of the UTF-8 character set. Include statements collect descriptions from different sources. The standard is technology and vendor independent. Due to its completeness, versatility, and maturity, the standard is widely used and supported by virtually all major MC-systems on the market today.


Standard Authors

Continental Automotive GmbH, dSPACE GmbH, ETAS GmbH, M&K Mess- und Kommunikationstechnik GmbH, Robert Bosch GmbH, Softing AG, Vector Informatik GmbH.


Current Activities on ASAM MCD-2 MC

Currently there are no standardization activities.

ECU Measurement and Calibration Data Exchange Format
Current Version
Release Date
30 Jan 2018
Application Areas
  • Calibration of ECU parameters
  • Measurement of ECU variables
  • ECU programming
Specification Content
  • Programmers guide
  • Data model
  • Interface description
File Formats
  • a2l
  • aml
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