As a lover of classic cars, I do have to admit that driving around without a modern stereo or the ability to play my own music is a bit of a bummer. I personally prefer driving old cars to new ones but each and every time I do, I end up missing Bluetooth connectivity. We seriously take for granted how easy it is to hook up our phones and listen to Spotify and have every one of our favorite songs at our fingertips. In a classic car, that technology is obviously lacking.
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However, Porsche just announced that it’s releasing modern touchscreen stereo head-units for its classic cars and it’s extremely exciting for classic Porsche owners.
The folks in Stuttgart have released two separate stereos, one for single-DIN (Deutsche Industrie Norm — the industry standard stereo size started by the Germans in the ’80s) and one for double-DIN setups.
The single-DIN unit is mostly for older cars, such as sixties and seventies cars. It features a small 3.5-inch touchscreen with Bluetooth and Apple CarPlay capability. There are also two knobs flanking the screen with six additional buttons, three on either side. So it looks just like a stereo from the ’60s. Just, ya know, with a touchscreen.
As for the double-DIN unit, it fits a much larger touchscreen with some knobs as well. It also gets Apple CarPlay but it adds Android Auto as well. The double-DIN unit fits cars like the 996-generation 911 and newer Porsche models.
This is a very cool idea and one that other automakers should follow, BMW being one of them. BMW is probably only second to Porsche for having fans that prefer older models. BMW fans are constantly waxing poetic about the old days and about how its cars from the ’80s and ’90s are its best. It’s a brand that has a ton of classic drivers. So if BMW offered something like this, those fans could daily-drive those older cars in a bit more comfort, without having to go for some ugly, aftermarket unit that ruins the classic look of the car.
Admittedly, there are some aftermarket solutions for this exact problem. Blaupunkt most famously offers retro-looking head units for classic cars that provide Bluetooth and Apple CarPlay. For many collectors, though, aftermarket just won’t do. So having an official brand option is nice.
It’s not cheap, mind you. Porsche’s prices range from $1,500 to $1,745, which is frankly a bit ridiculous. However, if BMW were to make a version, it could be a bit cheaper. Porsche isn’t famous for offering anything at fair prices and its clientele base isn’t known for caring. BMW, however, would have the ability to make such a thing more affordable.
As someone who is likely going to own another older BMW at some point in the relatively near future, I’d love the ability to have an official BMW option for something like this. It would just make ownership that little bit cooler.
[Source: Car and Driver]