Owners of older cars aren’t left behind, as they can always install Android Auto and CarPlay in their vehicles with the help of aftermarket upgrades. Third-party head units from the likes of Sony, Pioneer, Alpine, JVC, and others come with support for Android Auto, CarPlay, or both, sometimes providing new-generation capabilities as well, such as floating displays.
If you too are looking for such an upgrade, the list below includes the five most affordable head units that support Android Auto. Before ordering though, make sure they fit your car.
If you don’t want to spend a fortune on getting Android Auto in your car, Boss has a single-DIN unit that costs less than an Apple Watch SE.
The BE7ACP-FT model doesn’t come with CD or DVD support, but that’s quite alright if you’re only interested in Android Auto. You can play your favorite tunes from the mobile device, but at the same time, it also sports Bluetooth and USB support.
The media receiver can also run CarPlay, and if your vehicle is equipped with a parking camera, it boasts dedicated input to see real-time video on the screen.
Only a wired connection is supported for Android Auto, but this isn’t at all surprising given the price.
Boss BE7ACP-FT launched with a $299.99 price tag, but you can find it online today for just $189.
Dual’s most affordable Android Auto media receiver is almost as cheap as the Boss unit, so it comes without CD and DVD support as well.
On the other hand, it can run both Android Auto and CarPlay with a wired connection. The interface is displayed on a 7-inch touchscreen with a 1024×600 pixels resolution.
The Dual DMCPA70 also comes with a series of extras, including a USB port, a wireless IR remote that is included in the box, Bluetooth, and a rear camera port.
The device can be found online for as low as $199.99.
Jensen may not be as popular as Pioneer or Sony, but it still makes Android Auto head units that are totally worth checking out. The CAR710 model is living proof, as it integrates both Android Auto and CarPlay support, as well as a USB port with 1.5A charging.
Of course, Bluetooth is also available for hands-free calling and music streaming, and so is USB media playback support.
The device is also fitted with a 7-inch display that comes with touch input.
Jensen sells its most affordable Android Auto head unit at $249.99, but depending on where you look, chances are you can find it at about $200.
While Boss and Jensen are also offering several other media units in the same price range, it’s time to look at a more premium model.
The JVC KW-V66BT offers a 6.8-inch capacitive touchscreen, allowing you to run both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
In addition to typical specifications, such as Bluetooth integration and a rear-view camera port, the JVC media receiver also supports gesture touch control. With this feature, users can control the music playback or adjust the volume with gestures on the display. For instance, if you want to turn the volume up, you just need to make a circular gesture to the right.
The double-DIN JVC KW-V66BT typically sells for about $300, but if you’re lucky, you can find it for as low as $260.
Here comes the superstar. Pioneer is already one of the leading names in the media receiver market, and the company has tried to tackle as many price ranges as possible.
As far as the budget category is concerned, the DMH-1770NEX is Pioneer’s main model, coming with a 6.8-inch capacitive touchscreen capable of running both Android Auto and CarPlay via a wired connection.
With built-in Bluetooth, Pioneer’s head unit also allows wireless music playback and phone calls without even having to run Android Auto.
Just like the rest of the models in this price range, Pioneer DMH-1770NEX is also backup camera-ready, so you can automatically get a rear view on the screen when you go into reverse. Thanks to its integration, Pioneer’s head unit then returns to the source screen that was used before activating the parking camera.
Just as expected, DMH-1770NEX isn’t exactly as affordable as the Boss media receiver, and this makes perfect sense given it wears the Pioneer logo. You can purchase it for about $300, but if you get it during a sale, a 10 to 15 percent discount is also likely.