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This paper presents a probabilistic fault detection and handling algorithm (PFDH) for redundant and deterministic X-by-wire systems. The algorithm is specifically designed to guarantee safe operation of an experimental drive-by-wire vehicle used as test platform and development tool in research projects focusing on vehicle dynamics. The required flexibility of the overall system for use as a test bed influences significantly the redundancy structure of the onboard network. A “black box” approach to integrate newly developed user algorithms is combined with a hot-standby architecture controlled by PFDH. This way, functional redundancy for basic driving operations can be achieved despite unknown software components. PFDH is based on monitoring multiple criteria over time, including vehicle dynamics and relative error probabilities of hard- and software components provided by experts or statistical data.