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Old 12-01-2012, 07:24 PM   #1
aphex
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Default Does an aftermarket radio effect resale value?

Going to trade in my car soon and I have an aftermarket radio installed. I kept the factory equipment, so would I potentially get a better valuation with the factory setup?
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Old 12-01-2012, 07:43 PM   #2
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What's the car and what's in it?

With anything of recent manufacture, I would say yes, I would value it higher if untouched. Exceptions for very serious installs...if you can find the right buyer.
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Old 12-01-2012, 08:04 PM   #3
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Yeah IMO most of the aftermarket stuff wont increase the resale, though I've never really had it pointed out as a bad thing either.
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Old 12-01-2012, 08:14 PM   #4
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It's kinda like performance mods. Expensive, well-done stuff might fetch more money (again, only from a buyer that wants it). But stuff that's cheap and/or obviously not well-done will just scream 'help me I got molested.'

The stereo stuff is more severe on some cars because of complex interior electronics. Beyond some of the basic integration with BCM operation, you've got stuff that's comprised of multiple parts on a CAN bus. Plus the aesthetics- a single DIN unit in a gigantic filler panel isn't going to look appealing.
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Old 12-01-2012, 09:29 PM   #5
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Depends on the car. Aftermarket deck in a 1990's Civic? Probably won't make a difference. A WalMart head unit in a 2011 Mercedes? Yeah.
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Old 12-01-2012, 11:21 PM   #6
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Put the stock unit back in. It's always worth more that way.
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Old 12-02-2012, 07:53 AM   #7
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+1 put it back to stock. Most people only want stock. IMHO something like an aftermarket head unit would make me write off a car if I were looking to buy.
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Old 12-02-2012, 08:09 AM   #8
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+1 put it back to stock. Most people only want stock. IMHO something like an aftermarket head unit would make me write off a car if I were looking to buy.
LOL Seriously? It is just the freaking radio and most factory radios are junk. It isn't like they put a Walmart brand engine in it.
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Old 12-02-2012, 08:40 AM   #9
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LOL Seriously? It is just the freaking radio and most factory radios are junk. It isn't like they put a Walmart brand engine in it.
Yes, seriously. My thoughts are no offense to the OP, just what I've seen with aftermarket head units in general-

1) They look trashy as hell. You have a clean, coherent interior with some plastic-y, shiny, cheap-chit radio with some weird lighting/color scheme looking like it was designed by the fast-n-furious crowd in the exact center of the inside sucking your attention away from everything else and standing out like a sore thumb.

2) Most people who install aftermarket radios, at home or as a profession, are hardly qualified to operate a motor vehicle much less put their d**k hands all over the wiring. As said before, on any recent car you can have anything from the DLC, BCM, dash, busline or who knows what else running through the radio. I'd rather buy a car that hasn't been messed with, or if it has by someone with the intelligence and forethought to re-install the factory equipment before they sell it.

If its not a hard to find car, and I'm comparing multiple cars in the same general condition (usually the case when you buy a car), one negative is all it takes to narrow down the list.

Last edited by leper84; 12-02-2012 at 08:43 AM.
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:08 AM   #10
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Some modern cars are so integrated these days the days of aftermarket stereos are numbered. When your radio is just one page in a complete touchscreen interface that controls your heated seats, climate control, navigation and backup camera, there really isn't any way to put in an aftermarket stereo unless you're willing to live with parts of the car not working right. In these cars, you can swap out speakers and replace the amp but you're not going to do much more than that.
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:47 AM   #11
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Nerp with those kind I get it but with the older and plain factory radios you don't even have to touch the factory wiring in most cases. You just plug an aftermarket harness into the factory harness and wire the aftermarket harness to the radio. I don't consider an aftermarket radio a plus but I don't consider it a negative either unless it is just some cheapo POS but that still wouldn't stop me from buying the car. I'd just have to replace it with a decent aftermarket radio. The VW I just bought has a Kenwood in it because the previous owner replaced the factory one when the CD player died.
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:54 AM   #12
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It depends on the car, for sure. For something that's borderline classic, you want the original factory radio. But if it's flush and fits with the rest of the interior it's fine. I think the problems arise from something that really sticks out or is completely at odds with the rest of the interior.
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:56 AM   #13
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It depends on the car, for sure. For something that's borderline classic, you want the original factory radio. But if it's flush and fits with the rest of the interior it's fine. I think the problems arise from something that really sticks out or is completely at odds with the rest of the interior.
ALL aftermarket radios currently made are ugly and stick out. I've been trying to find a plain black headunit and I can't.
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Old 12-02-2012, 12:01 PM   #14
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Try looking for a Nakamichi head unit. They tend to be fairly simple on the outside and really good on the inside.
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Old 12-02-2012, 12:02 PM   #15
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Old 12-02-2012, 12:22 PM   #16
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Nerp with those kind I get it but with the older and plain factory radios you don't even have to touch the factory wiring in most cases. You just plug an aftermarket harness into the factory harness and wire the aftermarket harness to the radio. I don't consider an aftermarket radio a plus but I don't consider it a negative either unless it is just some cheapo POS but that still wouldn't stop me from buying the car. I'd just have to replace it with a decent aftermarket radio. The VW I just bought has a Kenwood in it because the previous owner replaced the factory one when the CD player died.
I installed one of these in my Forester and left it in when I sold it. I preferred it over the factory deck because it has aux/USB and bluetooth (with audio streaming). It's far more capable than the OEM unit.

It doesn't look OEM, but it's not bright and flashy like many decks are. The downside of that is it's hard to read in direct sunlight. :/

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Old 12-02-2012, 01:14 PM   #17
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I'd put the stock one back in.
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Old 12-02-2012, 01:34 PM   #18
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this is what I did....






I'll probably take it out when the car goes. I'll either sell it or put it in the next car.
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Old 12-02-2012, 01:53 PM   #19
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i generally leave oem stuff that I've retrofitted and take out aftermarket stuff.
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Old 12-02-2012, 01:58 PM   #20
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Once upon a time, my hearing was good enough to be able to tell the difference between crappy stock stereo equipment, and aftermarket stereo equipment. I bought, and installed, a decent stereo & speakers.

When it came time for me to trade the car in, the dealer pretty much told me that the most he would give me, for ANY stereo equipment, was $200. Normally, they limited it to $100. So if I had more than that into the stereo, he advised that I pull it out, and replace it with something cheap.
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Old 12-02-2012, 04:04 PM   #21
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Nerp with those kind I get it but with the older and plain factory radios you don't even have to touch the factory wiring in most cases.
Tell that to your typical Best Buy employee. Or shade tree electrician (i.e. 'wiring is easy, all you have to do is match colors!').

Despite the presence of cheap harness adapters, there is nearly always a big twist'n'tape bundle behind the headunit. If you're lucky it's just linking the connector on the headunit to an aftermarket connector for the factory harness. But just as commonly, someone has lopped off the end of the factory harness.

Finding solder, or even butt connectors, for that matter, seems to be like winning the lottery.
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