Bluetooth car radio test, comparison and buyer’s guide

View from a moving car with smartphone in the foreground

You love good music on long car trips, or you’re a businessman on the road a lot and still need to be constantly available? Then a Bluetooth car radio is just right for you! A car radio with Bluetooth function you can connect completely wirelessly with your cell phone, use it as a hands-free system for safe phone calls and also become a DJ yourself with your own music.

If you also want to say goodbye to annoying cables in your vehicle with a Bluetooth car radio, you are exactly right here! In this article we have collected the most important purchase criteria and also devote ourselves to current Bluetooth car radio tests.

These are our 7 product favorites at a glance:

The best 1-DIN Bluetooth car radio with hands-free: Kenwood KDC-X7200DAB on Amazon
“The Kenwood KDC-X7200DAB convinces as a comprehensive total package with hands-free and numerous interfaces.”

The best 1-DIN Bluetooth car radio with DAB+: JVC KD-X472DBT on Amazon
“The JVC KD-X472DBT is a solid Bluetooth car radio for receiving DAB+ and is also suitable for retrofitting a classic car.”

The best 1-DIN Bluetooth car radio with CD player: Kenwood KDC-BT740DAB on Amazon
“The Kenwood KDC-BT740DAB offers a multi-functional CD player, digital radio and many other convenient features.”

The best 1-DIN Bluetooth car radio with screen for navigation display: Sony XAV-AX8050ANT on Amazon
“The Sony XAV-AX8050ANT is a comprehensive Bluetooth car stereo with a foldable screen to display navigation apps and other applications for older vehicles.”

The best 1-DIN Bluetooth car radio under 100 euros: Pioneer DEH-S320BT
“The Pioneer DEH-S320BT offers money-savers numerous functions of a modern Bluetooth car radio for less than 100 euros.”

The best 2-DIN Bluetooth car radio with screen: Pioneer SPH-DA230DAB on Amazon
“The Pioneer SPH-DA230DAB upgrades newer vehicles with a screen for app use and can be expanded to become a parking assistant.”

The best 2-DIN Bluetooth car stereo without a screen: Kenwood DPX-7200DAB on Amazon
“The Kenwood DPX-7200DAB represents a total package with many functions for newer vehicles and does without a screen.”

The most important in a nutshell

  • A Bluetooth car radio offers you all the functions of a conventional car radio. In addition, thanks to wireless Bluetooth connection, you can connect your cell phone, a headset or other devices with your car radio, without cables disturbing you while driving.
  • Thanks to the connection with your cell phone, you can also play your own music via the Bluetooth car radio in addition to the normal radio program.
  • Through the wireless connection, a Bluetooth car radio in combination with your cell phone can easily be used as a hands-free system.
  • A new Bluetooth car radio can be installed in almost any vehicle and thanks to standardized dimensions, you can choose suitable devices for your car pretty quickly. However, it is best to leave the installation to a professional.
  • When choosing a suitable Bluetooth car radio, there are some important criteria to consider. How to find the right model for your needs, we explain you in our guide.
  • You are faced with a huge selection of models and do not know which device is the best for you? No problem, because we have summarized the test results of many models for you and present you our favorites.

The best Bluetooth car radios: Editors’ favorites

We have looked around in the huge selection of different Bluetooth car radios for you and present you here the 7 best products that will leave nothing to be desired.

The best 1-DIN Bluetooth car radio with hands-free: Kenwood KDC-X7200DAB

What we like:

  • receives analog and digital DAB+ radio
  • Includes a CD player, two USB ports and an AUX port
  • Can be linked via Bluetooth with several smartphones for telephony and music playback
  • supports Spotify and Apple Siri
  • hands-free microphone and antenna for DAB+ included in delivery

What we don’t like:

  • The sometimes complex menu navigation can be distracting while driving

Editorial assessment

This radio in the installation size 1-DIN is a comprehensive package with excellent price-performance ratio. It receives classic FM radio and digital DAB+ via the included digital antenna and stores up to 24 stations. The device also includes a CD player.

The Kenwood KDC-X7200DAB becomes an ideal hands-free device with the included hands-free microphone and the possibility to pair with up to 2 phones via Bluetooth. The driver-side, large phone button lets you answer and end phone calls with a quick press without losing attention to traffic.

Via Bluetooth, two USB ports and an AUX port, cell phones and storage media can be connected to stream music, or to charge the battery. Up to 5 audio sources can be controlled simultaneously. The radio supports all common file formats for CDs and USB storage media. Via Bluetooth, media playback on iPhones and Android smartphones can be easily controlled via the radio. The radio also supports Spotify and is compatible with Apple’s Siri voice control.

A rich stereo sound delivers the Bluetooth car radio from Kenwood by its digital sound processor with 13-band equalizer with digital delay correction and bass booster, as well as the MOSFET amplifier for 4 times 50 W.

The car radio ensures safety in two respects at once. The control module can be removed to protect against theft. A steering wheel control can also be connected via an adapter for safe operation of the device while driving.

The colors of the LC display and the illuminated buttons of the control panel can be changed flexibly according to taste. In addition, the brightness can be dimmed as desired.

The Kenwood KDC-X7200DAB is a convincing all-rounder that combines all the advantages of a Bluetooth car radio in a compact form and leaves nothing to be desired in terms of connection options for media sources.

The best 1-DIN Bluetooth car radio with DAB+: JVC KD-X472DBT

What we like:

  • DAB+ digital radio with automatic switch to the appropriate FM radio frequency when the digital signal is poor
  • Reduced installation depth also allows installation in vintage cars
  • the menu can be set in German language
  • Settings can be made via app on the cell phone
  • compatible with the Amazon voice assistant Alexa

What we don’t like:

  • Antenna for DAB+ reception not automatically included in delivery, must be selected as an option
  • does not include a CD player

Editorial assessment

With the KD-X472DBT, the top manufacturer JVC delivers a simple yet functional digital radio with Bluetooth function in the installation size 1-DIN. The reduction of the control panel to the essentials makes the car radio easy to use. Due to the small installation depth of only 100 mm, the device can also upgrade many vintage vehicles.

Via the optionally available digital antenna, the car radio receives DAB+ digital radio in high quality and without analog interference noise. If the digital reception is very poor while driving, the radio automatically switches to the appropriate analog FM frequency during this time.

Via Bluetooth music can be streamed from the smartphone on the car radio. The KD-X472DBT also supports Spotify and music search and control on the cell phone. Alternatively, the smartphone can also be connected to a USB port for music transfer, for the easy pairing function for iPhones and for charging the cell phone battery. Numerous common file formats are supported for playback from other USB storage media. In addition, the radio also has an analog AUX connection.

To make calls, the JVC car radio is connected with up to two cell phones via Bluetooth. With the included microphone, the KD-X472DBT becomes a practical hands-free system. A built-in steering wheel remote control can also be connected via an adapter.

Via a suitable app, the settings of the JVC KD-X472DBT can also be adjusted from the cell phone. The device also supports the Amazon voice assistant Alexa with a preinstalled app, which can be used to control music playback and call up current traffic information via voice command.

A parametric 13-band iEqualizer, a digital sound processor with delay correction, the bass boost and a MOSFET amplifier for 4 times 50 W ensure a good sound.

The display and the illumination of the buttons can be dimmed. In addition, the color of the display and illumination of the control panel can be changed as desired.

The JVC KD-X472DBT is a clear, yet convincing Bluetooth car radio for the reception of DAB+. With this device, older vehicles can be easily upgraded to contemporary entertainment and communication technology.

The best 1-DIN Bluetooth car radio with CD player: Kenwood KDC-BT740DAB

What we like:

  • Receives analog and digital DAB+ radio
  • with CD player, which also supports CD-R and CD-RW
  • supports Amazon’s voice assistant Alexa
  • Settings can be made via app on the cell phone
  • Hands-free microphone and antenna for DAB+ included in delivery

What we do not like:

  • the partly very small buttons of the control panel require a bit of fingertip feeling

Editorial assessment

Upgrading with the Kenwood KDC-BT740DAB brings not only a CD player, but also all the other benefits of a modern Bluetooth car radio to a vehicle with a 1-DIN installation slot. Thanks to a minimalist design, the device can be operated intuitively.

The CD player allows you to enjoy your own CD collection on the go. In addition, the drive also supports the playback of CD-Rs and CD-RWs.

Via Bluetooth, the Kenwood KDC-BT740DAB can be connected to up to 2 cell phones and used as a hands-free system. The required hands-free microphone is included in the scope of delivery. There is a connection option to a built-in steering wheel remote control via an adapter.

In addition to radio and CD, for optimal music entertainment, the car radio offers the ability to connect multiple phones to stream music via Bluetooth and also control playback on the smartphone. The device also allows the direct control of Spotify. There is also a USB port on the front panel for charging cell phones and connecting other storage media for media playback. The car radio can play back all common file formats. In addition, the Kenwood KDC-BT740DAB also has an analog AUX connection. A total of up to 5 audio sources can be used simultaneously.

With the Kenwood KDC-BT740DAB can also be used Amazon’s voice assistant Alexa. In addition, the entire radio including the settings can also be controlled via app from the smartphone.

Its good sound achieves the Bluetooth car radio from Kenwood with a digital 13-band equalizer including digital delay correction and a bass booster, as well as a MOSFET amplifier for 4 times 50 W.

The button illumination and the display can be adjusted in brightness and their color as desired. The entire control element can be removed to protect against theft.

The Kenwood KDC-BT740DAB is a solid solution for upgrading an older vehicle with modern technology for listening to music and making phone calls, while not excluding the somewhat out of fashion CDs.

The best 1-DIN Bluetooth car radio with screen for navigation display: Sony XAV-AX8050ANT

What we like:

  • receives analog and digital DAB+ radio
  • Easy operation via 9-inch touchscreen
  • compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, including voice control
  • supports WebLink 2.0
  • Connection option for rear view camera
  • Hands-free microphone and DAB+ digital antenna included in delivery

What we don’t like:

  • after the purchase a firmware update should be carried out to eliminate software problems
  • does not include a CD player

Editorial assessment

Those who want to upgrade their old vehicle with a new Bluetooth car radio do not have to do without a device with a screen and touch function for controlling smartphone apps and displaying a navigation app. Sony offers a system that accommodates all the functions of a current car radio in a compact device in 1-DIN installation size.

The XAV-AX8050ANT represents an entire entertainment system and also offers numerous other functions. Through Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, numerous apps are controlled from the cell phone via the generous, foldable 9-inch touchscreen with glare protection. This also allows various navigation apps to be used directly from the screen. In addition, there is the possibility to connect a rear view camera and display the image on the Sony system. It can display auxiliary lines as a parking assistant.

As a special feature, with a USB connection, the smartphone can be connected via WebLink 2.0 can be mirrored on the screen, so that all functions of the cell phone can be used on the screen.

The car radio supports digital DAB+ radio and classic FM radio. Music from the phone can be played directly via CarPlay, Android Auto or WebLink 2.0, but can also be played via Bluetooth through the car radio. The included hands-free microphone also allows the entire system to be controlled by voice assistant, and the car stereo can be used as a hands-free phone system for making calls.

A high-quality sound quality delivers the XAV-AX8050ANT through its amplifier with 10-band equalizer and bass optimization for 4 times 55 watts and an additional 3 times 5 V preout for individual expansion of the sound system.

With the Sony XAV-AX8050ANT, you invest in a particularly comprehensive entertainment system with special functions and the latest technology in 1-DIN installation size, which can be used without restrictions with both Apple and Android smartphones.

The best 1-DIN Bluetooth car radio under 100 euros: Pioneer DEH-S320BT

What we like:

  • Includes a CD player
  • the menu can be set in German language
  • media playback control via Pioneer Smart Sync app for Android possible
  • Can be upgraded to a hands-free system with matching microphone
  • with backup function for saving settings and stations when completely disconnected from the power supply

What we don’t like:

  • does not receive DAB+ digital radio
  • no hands-free microphone included in the delivery

Editorial assessment

Even for a small budget, there are offers for a Bluetooth car radio to retrofit. A convincing device in this price range with 1-DIN installation size is the DEH-S320BT from Pioneer. It offers a variety of interfaces for a price of well under 100 euros.

The DEH-S320BT’s feature set includes FM radio with automatic station search and memory function, Bluetooth connectivity for up to two smartphones with playback control function. In addition, the car radio has a CD drive, a USB port for media playback and with charging function for the cell phone, as well as an AUX audio input. For ideal music enjoyment via the cell phone, the car radio can control playback on the cell phone with the pre-installed Smart Sync app for Android and is also compatible with Spotify. For the CD drive and USB connection, the device supports the main audio file formats.

Thanks to Bluetooth pairing and the ability to connect an external hands-free microphone, the DEH-S320BT can also be easily upgraded to a hands-free system. A steering wheel remote control can also be connected to the unit.

On board is a MOSFET amplifier with 13-band equalizer for 4 times 50 W. The device is operated via the red illuminated control panel and the white, dimmable LCD display. Among other things, this also displays current traffic information. The menu can also be set to German, among other languages. Thanks to a backup function, the settings and channel selection are saved even if the device is completely disconnected from the power supply. The front panel can be easily removed to protect against theft.

With the DEH-S320BT, Pioneer delivers a device with an enormous range of functions for less than 100 euros and thus a Bluetooth car radio with an unbeatable price-performance ratio.

The best 2-DIN Bluetooth car radio with screen: Pioneer SPH-DA230DAB

What we like:

  • with DAB+ digital radio
  • with hands-free speakerphone
  • Supports Apple CarPlay, Siri voice assistant and Android Auto
  • Rear view camera can be connected and auxiliary lines for parking can be displayed
  • can display videos
  • Hands-free microphone included in delivery

What we don’t like:

  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto only via USB connection
  • no analog AUX audio connection

Editorial assessment

The Pioneer SPH-DA230DAB is a compact package that brings a small entertainment system in a 2-DIN installation size in the car. This includes not only the integrated DAB+ digital radio and a hands-free system, but also a large screen that makes numerous apps from the smartphone usable on the car radio thanks to Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.

The SPH-DA230DAB’s touchscreen display is a generous 7 inches, delivers 24-bit color depth, and can display HD-quality video. The smartphone can be connected via USB connection including charging function and with the help of Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, numerous apps can be used via the car radio’s touchscreen. This way, the Pioneer car radio also easily becomes a complete navigation system.

Thanks to the possible two video inputs, there is the possibility to connect a rear view camera and use a convenient parking aid with fade-in guides.

In addition, the cell phone can also be connected via Bluetooth to stream music and use the SPH-DA230DAB as a hands-free system thanks to the included microphone. Up to 2 telephones can be connected at the same time. There is also the possibility to connect a steering wheel remote control. The car radio is compatible with Spotify control and also supports Apple’s voice assistant Siri.
Perfect sound delivers the system of Pioneer by a MOSFET amplifier with 13-band graphic equalizer and delay correction for 4 times 50 W, respectively 4 times 27 W sinus.

With the Pioneer SPH-DA230DAB, even a newer vehicle with a 2-DIN installation slot can be upgraded with a comprehensive entertainment system for listening to music, making phone calls and watching videos for a fair price.

The best 2-DIN Bluetooth car radio without a screen: Kenwood DPX-7200DAB

What we like:

  • includes a CD player
  • receives DAB+ digital radio with automatic change to the appropriate FM radio frequency in case of poor digital signal
  • with handsfree
  • Supports Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant
  • Hands-free microphone and DAB+ digital radio antenna included in delivery

What we don’t like:

  • the partly complex menu navigation can be distracting while driving

Editorial assessment

If you want to retrofit a newer vehicle with a 2-DIN slot with a Bluetooth car radio, you don’t necessarily have to go for a complex device with a large screen. Kenwood delivers with the DPX-7200DAB a device that does without a high-resolution touchscreen, but still brings all the benefits of a modern car radio and a tidy design.

The car radio receives interference-free DAB+ digital radio, but automatically switches to the appropriate FM frequency in case of poor reception. In addition, the DPX-7200DAB comes with an integrated CD player.

Up to 5 audio sources can be connected via Bluetooth to stream music and even control media playback from the radio. The device is thereby compatible for the control of Spotify content. With the included hands-free microphone, the Kenwood DPX-7200DAB can easily be used as a speakerphone for up to 2 phones. Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant can also be controlled via the microphone. A steering wheel remote control can also be connected to the car radio.

A USB port on the front can be used to connect cell phones for music streaming and charging. iPhone users can use the easy pairing feature to quickly connect the phone to the car stereo. In addition, other USB storage media can be connected, and all common file formats are supported. There is also an additional analog AUX audio input on the front panel.

The Kenwood produces the great sound by a MOSFET amplifier with 13-band equalizer, bass boost and delay correction for 4 times 50 W, as well as 3 times 2.5 V preamplifier outputs for additional power amplifiers. The downloadable Kenwood Remote app can also be used to adjust the car radio’s settings via smartphone. The lighting and color scheme of the LCD display and buttons can be customized.

The Kenwood DPX-7200DAB is a comprehensive Bluetooth car radio for vehicles with a 2-DIN installation slot that leaves nothing to be desired if you want to do without a screen for app control and navigation display.

Buying guide for Bluetooth car stereos

Car radios with Bluetooth function make listening to music and making phone calls on the road particularly convenient for you. In addition to the classic functions of a car radio, you can connect your cell phone wirelessly to it. Thanks to radio-supported audio transmission, you can listen to your favorite music and make phone calls safely while driving – all without long cables or a space-consuming hands-free system!

Since a Bluetooth function in car radios has only been integrated as standard for a few years, you can benefit from these advantages with a Bluetooth car radio for installation even in an older car. This makes every trip, no matter how long, a lot of fun, and when you’re on business trips, you’re always reachable even when you’re on the road.

Smartphone with running music player fixed in a car next to the steering wheel and with a car radio in the background

When looking for a Bluetooth car radio, there is a wide selection of many different models with numerous functions and different interfaces. What to consider when buying a Bluetooth car radio, is explained in the buying guide.

The most important purchase criteria

In the following section, we give you tips on what criteria you should look for when choosing and buying a Bluetooth car radio. This allows you to find exactly the device that suits your needs and requirements.

Bluetooth profiles

When buying your Bluetooth car radio, you should be sure to check which Bluetooth profiles the device supports – because not all Bluetooth is the same. Bluetooth devices use so-called “Bluetooth profiles” for various functions for wireless data transmission. In order to be able to stream music from your cell phone and make phone calls through the speakers while on the road, the car radio should support those Bluetooth profiles that you need for your desired functions:

Bluetooth profile function
A2DP (Advanced Audio Distribution Profile) This profile is used for audio transmission in stereo, so that music can be transmitted in good quality from the cell phone to the radio
AVRCP (Audio Video Remote Control Profile) This allows media content on your cell phone to be controlled from the radio. This allows you to use the radio’s buttons to start and pause music playback, or to cycle through your tracks
HSP (Headset Profile) This profile can also be used to connect to a headset to make phone calls
HFP (Handsfree Profile) This allows you to control the cell phone via the hands-free system. This allows you to make phone calls without manual operation

Bluetooth version

In addition to the appropriate Bluetooth profiles, you should also check that the device supports the appropriate Bluetooth version. The transmission technology has been improved and optimized over time, so that there are now many different versions available. Older models that still use an older Bluetooth standard may have compatibility issues with the latest smartphones and current applications.

Functions

In addition to listening to music and making phone calls via Bluetooth, a car radio usually includes many other functions:

Radio

The reception of classical radio has always been a core function of every car radio. This allows you to listen to your hits and favorite programs on the radio while on the go and stay up to date with news, traffic information and other radio features. You can save your favorite stations and quickly select them again and again. By default, all car radios should be able to receive the classic FM radio, also called FM radio. These are the frequencies on which everyday radio stations are broadcast. Older models usually also receive radio on medium wave, usually abbreviated as AM, which used to be used to receive many international programs from abroad.

DAB and DAB+

For some years now, digital radio, usually abbreviated as DAB, has become increasingly popular. Digital radio offers you the advantage of listening to programs without the annoying noise of analog radio waves. In addition, you can still receive a much wider range of stations via DAB. The new DAB+ standard offers you even better reception quality. Even with digital radio, you can of course save your favorite stations to be able to select them quickly at any time.

Hands-free function

You can make phone calls particularly comfortably via a car radio with hands-free function. Not only the voice of your conversation partner is played back over the loudspeakers. An integrated microphone also lets you speak for yourself without having to hold the phone or put it in a bulky cradle. So you can make phone calls on the road comfortably and safely.

Transfer of telephone contacts

Many car radios offer you the possibility to import your phone contacts via Bluetooth or a USB connection. This allows you to quickly and specifically call a person or, in the case of devices with a navigation system, to calculate the route to one of your contacts.

Installation size

Important to note is the appropriate size of the car radio. Fortunately, there are standardized sizes and dimensions for the installation slot in which a car radio is inserted. Two sizes of slots are used for car radios in vehicles across manufacturers: the smaller 1 DIN and the larger 2 DIN.

Installation sizeDimensionsBackground
1 DIN 180 x 50 mm Older vehicles usually have a classic 1-DIN slot. At this size, which dates back to the days before integrated navigation systems, large front screens were not originally envisaged. You still don’t have to do without a car radio with a high-quality screen. Many modern devices for 1 DIN have a fold-out screen.
2 DIN 180 x 100 mm Newer vehicles often have a 2-DIN slot, which is twice the size of 1-DIN. This new size became necessary to be able to install radios with front screens for displaying navigation and entertainment systems. Accordingly, most 2 DIN models also have a screen or even an integrated navigation system. You can also install a 1-DIN car radio in a 2-DIN slot. You can cover the free space with a screen.

Additional interfaces

In addition to the Bluetooth function, most car radios have other interfaces that can be used to input and output media content.

USB port

Many car radios have a USB input, through which you can directly connect your cell phone. You can also play music from your mobile device and charge it at the same time. You can also connect an ordinary USB stick via the USB interface and thus enjoy music from your home PC on the road. The prerequisite for this is that your car radio also supports the format of your audio files. Common formats like MP3 or AAC should be supported by every modern car radio.

CD player

Although streaming music over the Internet is becoming more and more important, many people still have an extensive CD collection at home. If you also want to listen to your favorite CDs on long trips or on your vacation, choose a device with a built-in CD player.

DVD player

Some larger car radios, which are a whole entertainment system, even have a DVD player. So you can even watch your favorite movies on the road during a rest stop.

AUX audio input

Via an AUX cable connection with a 3.5 mm audio jack you can also play your music from your cell phone through the speaker boxes. However, you can not control them via the radio. Very well suited is the AUX port but for connecting headphones. This allows you to make confidential phone calls in the presence of passengers if you do not have a headset. Note, however, that driving with headphones on both sides is prohibited.

SD card slot

A slot for SD memory cards is also part of the equipment of many devices. You can also take music files with you on the road via these very mobile storage media. Make sure that the car radio supports the file format of your audio files. Common formats like MP3 or AAC should be compatible by default. In addition, some car radios with integrated navigation system receive updates via SD cards. You can download these regularly on any computer with internet access and then install them on the navigation system via an SD card.

What brands make quality Bluetooth car stereos?

There are numerous brands that produce high quality car radios with Bluetooth function. Some manufacturers have established themselves on the market and have stood for high quality for decades.

Pioneer

The traditional Japanese manufacturer Pioneer is already known for over half a century for the production of high-quality car radios. Pioneer offers you a wide range of different models in classic design, most of which also support the Bluetooth function.

Kenwood

Kenwood is another traditional brand from Japan that has established itself on the market. The manufacturer has been part of the JVC Kenwood Corporation since 2008 and also produces a whole range of car radios with Bluetooth connectivity.

This is a former brand of Panasonic and today part of the JVC Kenwood Corporation. It is also one of the world’s most famous manufacturers of car radios. JVC offers a wide range of Bluetooth car radios with a colorful, modern design.

Alpine

The Japanese manufacturer is not only the inventor of the car navigation system, but also a producer of car radios with a wide range of functions. The models are mostly large 2-DIN car radios, but can also be installed in a 1-DIN slot. Alpine car radios are very high quality and usually include a navigation device. The devices usually belong to the higher price segment, but offer a very high quality.

The technology giant Sony produces not only camera technology and game consoles, but also car radios. This manufacturer offers you a wide range of different models with numerous equipment variants, up to entire entertainment systems for your car.

Blaupunkt

The German address among the top manufacturers of car radios is Blaupunkt. As a pioneer of radio technology, this brand stands equally for tradition and quality. Blaupunkt produces numerous high-quality Bluetooth car radio models with classic, simple design or in retro look.

Where to buy Bluetooth car radios?

You can buy a car radio with Bluetooth function locally in most electronics stores and many hardware stores. Another option is to go to a specialty store for car accessories. But of course you can’t really test a device in your own car before you buy it.

Much more convenient is therefore the purchase of a Bluetooth car radio in an online store, such as Amazon. Here you have the choice between numerous models and can check the devices for the required requirements and compare the prices.

Important accessories for Bluetooth car radios

If you want to make the best use of your Bluetooth car radio in all situations, you can expand the equipment with useful accessories. Which options are available to you, you can find out here.

External handsfree microphone

Not all Bluetooth car radio models have an integrated microphone for making phone calls. If you still want to use it as a hands-free device, you can add an external microphone. This is usually connected by cable, or also via Bluetooth with the car radio. Mount the microphone in front of you, without restricting your field of vision, for example on the back of the rear view mirror. You can already make phone calls safely.

Headset

If you have passengers with you on the road, but still want to have confidential conversations or you have trouble understanding your conversation partner because of the driving noise, it is worth buying a headset. With it you have the voice of your conversation partner directly and discreetly in your ear. You can also connect modern headsets via Bluetooth with your car radio.

Remote control

So you are even safer on the road, you can also control your Bluetooth car radio via a remote control. So you are not distracted by traffic every time you want to change the station, or search a title of your playlist. You can also use it to answer and hang up calls. The most convenient is an integrated steering wheel remote control. However, the steering wheels of older cars are usually not yet equipped with it and the installation of a new steering wheel is expensive. The ideal solution is therefore a universal car radio remote control. You can usually also attach these to your steering wheel and control your car radio via Bluetooth.

Cell phone holder

If you connect your phone not only to listen to music, but also want to use it with an app as a navigation device at the same time, it is also recommended to use a phone cradle. You can either attach these to the side of the windshield with a suction cup or attach them to the air vents of your vehicle with a clamping mechanism. With this you always have the display of your navigation app in view, without taking your hands off the steering wheel.

Bluetooth car radio test overview: Which Bluetooth car radios are the best??

A very good orientation for the selection of technical products are tests of consumer magazines. These take a closer look at products through the eyes of experts and users, shedding even more detailed light on various offerings.

In the following we show you whether the most important consumer magazines in the German-speaking countries have published current and relevant product tests on Bluetooth car radios.

Test magazineBluetooth car radio test available?Publication yearFree accessLearn more
Product test foundation No current test found
Eco Test No test found
Consumer.at No test found
Ktipp.ch No test found

FAQ – Frequently asked questions about Bluetooth car radios

When buying a Bluetooth car radio, many questions always arise. We have collected some of the most frequently asked questions here and will answer them for you.

How to connect my Bluetooth car radio with my cell phone?

A Bluetooth car radio can be easily connected to your cell phone. Simply open the settings of your phone and look there for the options for connections. Here you can activate Bluetooth now.

Then switch on the Bluetooth connection of your car radio. How exactly this works for a specific model can be found in the user manual.

After a few moments, your cell phone will recognize the Bluetooth car radio and display this device among the available connections. Then select the radio by tapping. Now your two devices are connected and you can enjoy your favorite music on the road or make safe phone calls. Usually, the Bluetooth car stereo will remember newly added devices, so your phone should connect automatically from now on.

Are there alternatives to a Bluetooth car radio?

Most current car radio models for retrofitting have a Bluetooth function. However, some models, which are usually designed as comprehensive entertainment systems, now offer other options for wirelessly connecting the car radio and cell phone, which even expand the range of functions.

Such connect systems can not only be used to make phone calls and listen to music, but bring entire apps to your car radio. While they were initially still dependent on a USB cable connection, there are now also devices that use Bluetooth or a local WLAN hotspot for this purpose.

Devices with Apple CarPlay

One such system is CarPlay from Apple, which links your iPhone to your car radio. This not only allows you to control music streaming and telephony directly via the car radio’s touchscreen or by voice command, but also Apple navigation and messenger apps. So far, CarPlay is mostly only available in the already integrated entertainment systems of some car manufacturers. However, there are now some retrofit car radio models from well-known manufacturers that support CarPlay, for example Pioneer and Alpine.

Devices with MirrorLink or Android Auto

MirrorLink and Android Auto are similar connect systems designed for smartphones with Android operating system. Also these systems allow you to control numerous apps via your car radio. Devices are available for example from Sony, Pioneer or Alpine. Make sure that your cell phone and the car radio of your choice support the same system.

You want to continue using an older car radio that doesn’t yet include Bluetooth technology, or you bought an older device used? No problem, because there are still a few ways to connect your phone wirelessly to your car radio:

Bluetooth dongles

If your car radio does not have a Bluetooth function, but has various cable connections, you can retrofit it with Bluetooth adapters, the so-called Bluetooth dongles. These are small Bluetooth receivers that are available for all common connection types such as USB or the 3.5 mm AUX audio connection. Simply plug the adapter into the appropriate port and connect your phone to the appropriate Bluetooth connection.

FM transmitter

A so-called FM transmitter is another solution to play music from your cell phone through the speakers of your car. The FM transmitter is usually connected to the car’s power supply via the cigarette lighter and works like a small radio transmitter. With the help of Bluetooth or an audio cable you can connect your cell phone with the transmitter. This then sends the audio signal of your cell phone at short distance over a free ordinary FM frequency. You only have to set the same frequency in your car radio. Listen to your favorite songs through your speakers. The sound quality is rather limited. With a corresponding FM transmitter with microphone, you can even realize a hands-free system for making phone calls.

How to install a Bluetooth car radio?

You may be able to install a new car radio yourself. But you should be careful, because the device is connected directly to the electronics of your car. Also, despite numerous standards, the ports are sometimes placed differently in different car manufacturers and you may need special accessories. Especially 2-DIN radios are sometimes very complicated to install.

We strongly recommend that you have your Bluetooth radio installed by a professional. For this you should visit a car repair shop. In this case you can be sure that your car radio is installed professionally and everything works properly.

Related sources

* We link to selected online stores and partners, from which we can offer a Bluetooth adapter. receive an allowance. As an Amazon partner I earn on qualified sales

Like this post? Please share to your friends:
Leave a Reply

;-) :| :x :twisted: :smile: :shock: :sad: :roll: :razz: :oops: :o :mrgreen: :lol: :idea: :grin: :evil: :cry: :cool: :arrow: :???: :?: :!: