Bentley builds their cars to last forever and while the car’s design may be timeless, the navigation, stereo and other electronic interfaces are not. With so many systems integrated into the head unit, how do you add new technology? For decades, it was easy to pop out one head unit and replace it with another, but this has become almost impossible with today’s cars.
One UK firm, however, has figured out how to get a new head unit into the Bentley Continental and it’s not just a one-off. Cartronics in Kent hasn’t just done it once, they’ve done it several times and have put it into a package for GT owners.
The firm starts by removing the factory head unit and replacing it with the latest Pioneer touch screen unit. This is the first difficult part of the process due to the amount of time it takes (labor costs) and the required bespoke parts. Then they tackle the wiring, which is also quite labor intensive. In the end, the new unit can be controlled through the Bentley steering wheel and all factory menus appear on the new screen.
The Pioneer head unit will add DAB (digital radio), bluetooth, DVD and USB. The unit has its own navigation system and inputs for two cameras. Most importantly for the title of this article, it is Apple CarPlay ready, allowing you to access all of the App Store.
The installation isn’t cheap. Right now it runs about £4950 (north of $7k USD), depending on a few variables. That’s not an insignificant investment, but if you’re keeping your car for the long haul, it could be worth it for the modern convenience of Apple CarPlay in your Bentley.