While installing a headunit can be a simple in-and-out process, that’s not the case when you’re shoehorning a double-DIN Clarion MAX 675VD into an e46 M3 dash. The 675VD is a full mobile entertainment unit with optional navi—perfect for this luxe ride. But with the climate control panel resting below the single-DIN stock unit and air vent gadgetry to the rear, this install requires some crafty relocation. The result? A fully operational center console that looks factory-clean.
1: The first thing to go is the factory stereo and climate control support.
2: Once the dash is totally apart, this is the scene that’s revealed. Plastic cladding, hiding the heater core and foot-well vent controls, makes this install a challenge.
3: Before any modifications are made, the MAX 675VD gets a test fit. Obviously, there are some clearance issues here.
4: Some custom trimming to make room for the new unit is needed.
5: An ABS plastic bracket is custom fabricated and installed to create a barrier between the headunit and the heater core, and to protect from any possible condensation.
6: With the fitment perfected, the MAX 675VD is almost ready to go.
7: All wrapped up in the custom double-DIN bezel, available at mybimmer.net, the Clarion unit looks right at home.
Installation by Don Whitmire of Hi-Velocity Motorsports, 718-727-2858.