How Much Does Apple Carplay Installation Cost?


Apple CarPlay has become an incredibly popular feature for integrating iPhones into new cars and bringing smart features to older vehicles.


This useful system allows you to access navigation, music, calls, messages, and supported apps right on your vehicle’s touchscreen display.

Apple Carplay Installation Cost

Apple Carplay Installation Cost


If you drive an older model or bought a car lacking CarPlay, there are now more options than ever for adding it aftermarket.


Below we’ll explore everything you need to know about installing Apple CarPlay in your car or truck:

How Much Does Apple CarPlay Installation Typically Cost?

  • Aftermarket Stereo Receiver: $200 – $400 for a standard CarPlay deck. Higher-end options with wireless connectivity, built-in amps, and expanded features can range from $500 up to $700+. This is the most common and affordable DIY path for adding CarPlay.
  • Dealer Installation: Some automakers like Mazda, Hyundai, Toyota, and Kia offer retroactive CarPlay activation at their dealerships for $199 – $500 including parts and labor. Only applies to select late-model vehicles – check with your dealer.
  • Software Upgrade: Newer capabilities allow over-the-air software updates to enable CarPlay on properly equipped vehicles. For example, Volvo recently introduced this for $250.
  • Professional Installation: Expect to spend around $100 – $250 to have a car audio shop handle wiring and installation of an aftermarket CarPlay receiver.

So in total – installing Apple CarPlay with all parts, kit, and labor will typically cost anywhere from $500 to $1,000+ depending on the options and vehicle.

Is Apple CarPlay Difficult to Install Yourself?

Installing an aftermarket CarPlay stereo on your own is achievable with some handy skills and the proper precautions:

  • Ensure stereo compatibility – Confirm the new receiver matches your vehicle’s dash size, and wiring harness, and doesn’t have known interference issues. Watch for surprises with luxury vehicles.
  • Purchase an install kit – Kits with dash pry tools, wiring harness adapters, etc. make removing the factory radio much simpler.
  • Disconnect battery – Prevents dangerous shorts and stops airbags from deploying during dash work.
  • Remove old stereo – Unbolt, and unplug wires and connectors carefully to avoid damage.
  • Install new stereo – Connect included wiring harness adapter, mount into the opening, and reinstall trim.
  • Reconnect battery – The fuse should be the final connection made as a safety measure.
  • Test operation – Verify stereo powers on and speakers all work before closing up.

It takes patience but a DIY CarPlay installation is very achievable. If not up to the task yourself, car audio professionals can handle the wiring and hardware upgrades for around $100-$250.


What Does Apple CarPlay Allow You To Do?

  • Use Apple or Google Maps for navigation displayed right on your dashscreen.
  • Access your contacts and voicemail when placing hands-free calls.
  • Listen to playlists, podcasts, and more through Apple Music integration.
  • Have messages read aloud and dictate responses via Siri.
  • Support for many third-party audio, messaging, EV charging, and parking apps.
  • All are accessible via touchscreen, steering wheel controls, or voice commands to minimize distraction.

Essentially CarPlay allows you to use your iPhone’s functions in a clean, optimized interface designed specifically for the car. It’s a seamless experience that feels like native built-in infotainment instead of phone mirroring.

Top 5 Aftermarket Apple CarPlay Stereo Options

Here are some of the highest-rated CarPlay receivers recommended for installation:

Pioneer AVH-W4500NEX

  • 7” Floating capacitive touchscreen
  • Wireless CarPlay connectivity
  • Alexa’s built-in voice controls
  • High-quality audio reproduction

Kenwood Excelon DMX907S

  • Large responsive touchscreen
  • Bluetooth, wireless CarPlay/Android Auto
  • Excellent integrated amplification
  • HD Radio tuner included

Alpine iLX-407

  • 7″ Mechless receiver with capacitive display
  • Wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
  • Sleek, flush appearance in the dash opening
  • Great cost-to-performance ratio

Sony XAV-AX7000

  • 6.95” bezel-less display
  • Supports both wired and wireless CarPlay
  • On-screen parking assist lines
  • High power output


  • 6.8” Clear resistive touchscreen
  • Built-in Bluetooth for calls and audio
  • Sirius XM ready with tuner control
  • Affordably priced CarPlay option

You can find competitively priced brand name CarPlay units like these at Best Buy, Crutchfield, Amazon, and car audio retailers nationwide. They check the boxes for easy smartphone connectivity while providing entertainment options and clean aesthetic factory integration.

Can CarPlay Be Added at The Dealership on Unsupported Models?

  • Mazda Connect – Late model Mazdas can upgrade to add CarPlay through authorized dealers, running $199-$499 for parts and installation.
  • Hyundai Blue Link – On select 2016+ vehicles, dealers can update included SD navigation cards to enable CarPlay for $299.
  • Toyota Entune 3.0 – 2016-2019 cars with specific Entune systems can have CarPlay activated by Toyota dealerships for around $199.
  • Kia UVO – 2017-2019 Kia vehicles equipped with UVO link can enable CarPlay for approximately $395 in parts and labor costs.

So while not every automaker provides official support to add CarPlay post-purchase, many now offer dealer installation options. New vehicles tend to have more upgradeability, but it’s worth checking with service departments on 1-3-year-old models as well.


Is It Possible to Add Apple CarPlay Using WiFi or Bluetooth Connectivity?

Since CarPlay relies on heavy integration with a vehicle’s infotainment CPU and operating system, basic wireless connectivity alone isn’t sufficient. But WiFi and Bluetooth can help facilitate wireless communication in some cases:

  • Wireless CarPlay – Many new aftermarket stereos use Bluetooth and WiFi to connect wirelessly to CarPlay-compatible iPhones after initial USB setup. This provides a clean install look.
  • Over-The-Air Updates – Some automakers including Mercedes, BMW, and Volvo can push software updates to add CarPlay over home or dealer WiFi without needing to visit the dealership or replace hardware.
  • Bluetooth Workarounds – Apps like CarBridge promise partial CarPlay functionality by mirroring your iPhone’s screen over Bluetooth. However, they lack important app integration and struggle with consistent performance.

The processor, operating system, and app framework of an infotainment system needs to specifically support CarPlay for full and proper iPhone integration. But wireless connectivity certainly enables convenience and flexibility during or after installation.

Which New Vehicle Models Come Equipped With Apple CarPlay?

CarPlay is becoming more ubiquitous across all categories, now offered from mainstream to luxury automakers across hundreds of 2023 vehicle models including:

  • Nearly standard on new Mercedes, BMW, Audi, Volvo, Porsche, Land Rover/Jaguar, and Genesis luxury vehicles.
  • Most new Ford, GM, and Stellantis vehicles including trucks and SUVs.
  • Higher trim versions of popular Toyota, Honda, Nissan, and Subaru mainstream cars/crossovers.
  • Standard or available from Hyundai, and Kia at minimal cost across many model lines.
  • Integrated into premium cabin experiences from Lexus, Acura, Infiniti, and Cadillac.

New cars featuring wireless Apple or Android connectivity often tout smartphone integration in sales literature and when advertising trim levels. It has evolved from a high-end luxury feature to more democratic and expected convenience.


When shopping for a new vehicle, CarPlay capability is worth prioritizing. Paying just a little more upfront for built-in functionality will save the headache down the road compared to adding aftermarket.

Helpful Tips for Installing Apple CarPlay

If tackling your own CarPlay installation, either in a new car or when adding to an older vehicle, keep these pointers in mind:

  • For the easiest upgrade path, choose stereos matching your car’s sizing and harness connector type.
  • Research new wiring complexity or interference issues before buying equipment.
  • Consider receivers with built-in amps when replacing complex luxury vehicle systems.
  • Utilize vehicle-specific install kits and harnesses for plug-and-play wiring.
  • Get CarPlay activation cost estimates from dealers in writing before moving forward.
  • Watch online install videos specific to your car and stereo for helpful visual guidance.
  • Add accessories like backup cameras that integrate cleanly through your new CarPlay receiver.
  • Think ahead to future vehicle compatibility if you tend to lease or upgrade frequently.

Top 10 Apple CarPlay Alternatives

While CarPlay and Android Auto provide the most seamless smart device integration, there are aftermarket workarounds available with basic mirroring functionality using the devices below:

Product Connectivity Pros Cons
Echo Auto Bluetooth Alexa integration, affordable Limited app functionality beyond Alexa
CarlinKit 3.0 Bluetooth Wireless connectivity, steering wheel control Delayed response, Android only
AA Mirror WiFi Streams phone screen with audio Touchscreen control delays, setup difficulties
Carsifi WiFi Offers WiFi hotspot extension Doesn’t actually mirror or integrate smartphone
AirMirror WiFi Minimal lag once connected Tedious WiFi connection process
Joying Backup Camera Wired Integrates phone and backup camera Very manual mirroring without control integration
Yomikoo Car Play WiFi Promises seamless Android mirroring Reviewers cite major issues across all functions
LexUp Car Navigation Bluetooth Calls, music, navigation Severely outdated product and support
CamView Backup Camera Wired Simple installation Literally just a backup camera
Pumpkin Backup Camera Wired Good value backup cam with guidelines Auxiliary display only, no control or integration

While these solutions may provide basic display mirroring, they lack the tight integration, rich feature set, and usability of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. But for those with older vehicles and basic needs, they can get the job done in a pinch. We recommend springing for a true CarPlay or Auto head unit upgrade if the budget allows.


Frequently Asked Questions About Apple CarPlay Installation

  • Can any vehicle or stereo add CarPlay support?

No, the receiver or infotainment system must be designed to run the CarPlay software framework and properly communicate with iPhones. Both built-in and aftermarket systems advertise CarPlay integration specifically.

  • Will CarPlay work directly over Bluetooth or WiFi without a compatible head unit?

No. Because CarPlay involves significant integration and app functionality, basic wireless connectivity does not offer actual CarPlay capabilities. Some stereo makers now support wireless CarPlay communication after the initial USB setup.

  • Do I need an iPhone to use CarPlay or can Android phones work?

You need an iPhone 5 or newer. CarPlay leverages Apple’s tight hardware/software ecosystem integration specifically. For Android devices check if your car supports Android Auto – similar functionality.

  • What is the typical cost for parts and professional installation?

You can expect to spend around $500-$800 typically for a nice CarPlay receiver plus wiring harness adapters and professional dashboard installation work. High-end wireless units with added features push costs higher.

  • Can I bring my steering wheel controls, backup camera, satellite radio, etc. when upgrading?

The best CarPlay receivers retain integrated steering wheel control compatibility and have input to add external devices like backup cameras and satellite radio tuners while maintaining a clean factory look.

  • Will adding CarPlay help or hurt my car’s resale value?

The capability to integrate modern smartphones is becoming an expected feature and lacks the dated feeling of old automaker tech. Clean CarPlay upgrades done well boost perceived tech and should help resale versus without.

  • How difficult is it to install CarPlay stereos myself?

Intermediate mechanical skills are required but it’s very doable, especially with vehicle-specific install kits. The key steps are safely removing the old stereo, connecting adapters, securing the new unit, and reassembling the trim. Patience!

  • Can I get Wireless CarPlay added to my car if the current system is wired?

Potentially! Many late-model cars with factory CarPlay have upgrade options to enable wireless connectivity. For older systems, you would need to replace the wired stereo with an aftermarket Wireless CarPlay model.

  • Will CarPlay work in any vehicle? Even trucks, classic cars, RVs?

In most vehicles – CarPlay head units are available in standard and large sizes for double DIN openings. Ensure adequate space, compatible harness adapter available, sufficient electrical system capabilities, no known interference issues, etc. during research for rare vehicle types.

  • What changes or improvements does Apple have planned for CarPlay?

Apple continues refining CarPlay with more seamless iOS integration, updates to Apple Maps, and support for newer features like spatial audio in vehicle contexts. More third-party app support, EV ecosystems, and expanded voice assistant capabilities are likely future improvements.

More Automobile Guides:


Adding Apple CarPlay through an aftermarket stereo is the most common upgrade route to equip both new and older vehicles costing $500 or less when factoring install labor.


All CarPlay installations provide safer iPhone integration for calls, navigation, entertainment, and more right on your dashscreen.

luxury vehicles may require extra research to avoid surprises or complexities in integrating third-party systems. But for most cars and trucks CarPlay can be an attainable upgrade bringing your ride into the smartphone age.

The connectivity convenience, slick interface, and smart features are well worth the investment – no app fumbling while driving is required!

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