Help me decide whether to buy this car
June 3, 2011 7:15 PM   Subscribe

2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee: What are my options with the built-in UConnect hands-free system if I want to switch the stereo?

I'm potentially buying a 2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee tomorrow. I've been researching the options and see that MP3 options with the stereo include MP3 CD and external jack for an iPod. However, it seems the iPod must be controlled on the device, not through the stereo controls. That's not gonna cut it for me. I don't have an issue with buying a new stereo and have been thrilled with the one I replaced in my 2004 Jeep. But when researching the option package I discovered the package this vehicle has also includes UConnect Bluetooth hands-free system. This is a feature I've always wanted so that's a big bonus. However, it appears to be tied into the stereo system.

So, what are my options if I decide to swap out the stereo? I see a lot of car stereos include Bluetooth but can they use any parts of the existing system? If I can't swap out the stereo that might be a deal breaker.

Also, I'd love to hear from anyone who has a Jeep with this system on whether the hands-free is even worth having.
posted by thebriguy72 to Shopping (3 answers total)
The other option is a cable like this (scroll down for the 2008 / UConnect adaptors) which plugs into the back of the existing stereo to allow the radio controls to operate the iPod.

Now idea how well that particular one works - every now & then I check out the iPod adaptors for my older Mazda3, and they vary quite a bit in their individual functionality.
posted by Pinback at 7:23 PM on June 3, 2011

I'm pretty sure that the factory hands-free module isn't going to work with any aftermarket radio. The factory radio and HFM work together.
posted by pmurray63 at 12:30 AM on June 4, 2011

Which radio is in there now? The mygig or the older one?

Few car radios have decent ipod control support. They just, well, suck. When you're used to using the ipod's controls it feels wretchedly cumbersome to try using ones integrated with the radio itself. They're just _that_ bad.

More likely than not you're going to lose integration with the built-in uconnect. But it's not like that's all that amazing anyway. From what I've seen many other radios do a better job providing bluetooth integration anyway.
posted by wkearney99 at 1:55 PM on June 4, 2011

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