Aftermarket Solutions

If you have an older car without the latest connection methods, but want the functionality of AUX or USB Inputs, Bluetooth® or even the latest mobile operating systems, there are aftermarket solutions that you may be interested in.

New Stereo Head-units

The simplest option for older cars may be to get a new stereo head-unit for your vehicle. You can either buy these online to fit yourself or get one fitted by your local Autocentre (somewhere like Halfords or similar). Beware that to fit these units you will often need the appropriate dashboard kit, wiring loom / harness and antenna adapter. There are lots of helpful guides online to help with this.

These days there is a huge range of choice of head units, most of which will have USB and 3.5mm inputs as well as Bluetooth. Pioneer and Alpine models from later this year are also likely to have Apple Car Play fitted and some models already have MirrorLink™ installed.

Aftermarket Adapters

You may also be able to add functionality to your existing stereo with adapters. These normally connect into the back of your car stereo (often into a port designed for the CD changer) and so require taking your head-unit out to install. They offer different levels of features, some just provide AUX inputs for your stereo, others can offer similar functionality to USB inputs.

You can get official kits supplied and fitted by your local dealer, or if you are more adventurous there are numerous kits available online to fit yourself. For example sites like xCarLink, sell a range of adapters, which connect into the back of many factory fitted stereos.

Products that may be of interest

JVC KD-R331 Car

A replacement car stereo with a 3.5mm AUX Input.

Sony CDX-G1000U Car

A replacement Car Stereo with Bluetooth, USB & AUX input.

Belkin Tunecast FM Transmitter (Lightning)

A replacement Car Stereo with Bluetooth, USB & AUX input.

Pioneer AVH-X3600DAB Car

A replacement car stereo from Pioneer with USB, Bluetooth and MirrorLink™.

Sony XAV-602BT Car Multimedia System

A replacement car stereo from Sony with USB, Bluetooth and MirrorLink™.

Pioneer AVIC-F960BT Car

Pioneer promises that this model (AVIC-F960BT) will be one of the first to feature Apple CarPlay (although a firmware update will be required which is expected later in 2014). You can read more from Pioneer.