Android head units are becoming more common as they let you connect up your android smartphone and use all the features right in front of you on the car dashboard. Nearly everyone that drives has a smartphone these days, with these fitted entertainment systems letting you receive calls, play music, listen to audiobooks, check Google maps and use many other beneficial smartphone features.
If your car stereo system is outdated and you think a new, modern entertainment system wouldn’t look out of place in your vehicle, then the functionality is definitely worth the money if you can afford it. Most vehicle audio systems can be replaced with these units, though installation may be a little tricky if you’re not sure of car electronics. Because this is a costly purchase, we’ve carefully selected our 5 top android auto head units underneath.
Best Android Auto Head Units in the UK Reviews
#1. PUMPKIN Android 9.0 Double DIN Car Stereo Head Unit
The best Android Auto head unit is the double din unit from PUMPKIN. They’re well-known for making fantastic head units, and this one, built to handle even the newest models of Android, is no different. It comes with 4GB of RAM and 32GB of ROM, along with an impressive Octa Core that will allow you to enjoy faster, more stable running even while handling more apps and files.
It supports both online and offline map navigation apps and has a built-in WiFi modem. It’s also FM/AM RDS enabled and has high-quality radio IC for the best possible reception. The Bluetooth 4.0 has a special MIC for clearer, consistent hands-free calls, streaming, and Internet access. The HD touchscreen supports 4K and 1080p HD video, as well.
PUMPKIN additionally offers a one-month money-back guarantee and an 18-month warranty.
- 7-inch HD color touchscreen
- 4GB RAM, 32GB ROM
- 1080p HD video streaming
- Hands-free functionality
- Fits most cars with a double DIN fitting
- There are some complaints about the GPS functionality, but it’s not clear if operation was attempted online or offline
#2. Sony XAV-AX100 Media Receiver
Sony is well-known as an electronics giant for many product lines. This is no different with their head units, and the XAV-AX100 is a constant best-seller and frequently receives stunning reviews across the board. It’s compatible with Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, navigation systems, and Spotify.
This model features a clear, responsive color touchscreen so you don’t have to worry about any unsightly or inconvenient navigation buttons or keys. It does have a rotary knob, ergonomically-shaped and ready to ensure that you have a distraction-free operation. Additionally, you can link the entire head unit up with any controls on your steering wheel as well as with Google Voice and Siri. This will allow you to be completely hands-off for all of your navigation and media needs while you’re behind the wheel.
It also features a 10-band equalizer for customized sound, as well as three preamp outputs for if or when you want to expand your system.
- A sleek, sophisticated look that can be custom-tailored to your tastes
- Can be connected to the steering wheel controls
- Fits perfectly in most double DIN cars
- Comes with or without a DVD drive
- Works with Google Play Music, Spotify, Audible, and more
- Your phone may need to be plugged in to fully use all of the features despite the Bluetooth capabilities
#3. Pioneer SPH-DA230DAB
Pioneer is another brand that comes with a well-known reputation for producing quality electronic products. The SPH-DA230DAB model is a shining example of their quality and commitment to producing great products.
The mechless, seven-inch touchscreen head unit is generally seen as more Android-friendly than most other units. It can handle voice control for both Android and Apple, and will also easily integrate Google Maps and Waze for voice-based navigational purposes. With an impressive, customizable interface for all of your audio and sound settings, you can’t go wrong with this unit.
- 13-band graphic equalizer, auto-equalizer and time alignment
- Bluetooth allows hands-free calling and music streaming
- Customizable sound settings can be perfected to your preferences
- Mechless double DIN stereo
- You’ll need an adapter to connect this unit properly to the steering wheel controls in your vehicle
- May drain your car’s battery a bit, make sure you check all connections properly upon installation
#4. ATOTO A6 Android Car Navigation Stereo
ATOTO might be lesser-known and easily overlooked when sitting next to brand names like Sony and Pioneer, but don’t let that fool you. It made the cut for this list for a reason, and that reason is that it is unarguably one of the best head units available on the market. As an added bonus, customers that have bought this unit love it for its high-quality and low starting price. It has a range of models and prices to match. But, no matter which model you choose or what your budget will allow, you can rest assured that you’re getting a great deal.
This unit is incredibly customizable and optimized to perform its best in your vehicle. It comes loaded with great features, from the FM/AM radio tuner to the auxiliary, backup and dash camera inputs. It can also be easily linked to your steering wheel control features. A unique perk of this unit is that it can receive and tether WiFi, and the microphone has been significantly improved from previous models.
With all of those features packed into the A6 Standard unit, you might not need to worry about any of the upgraded packages, but they’re great and have additional, useful features as well. ATOTO does offer a warranty on this product, the details of which can be found on their website.
- Firmware is constantly updated, so you will always have the latest release
- Can connect to your steering wheel controls easily
- The user interface of the unit is intuitive and easy to navigate and customize
- Can connect to dash cams, Bluetooth, and rearview cameras
- WiFi tethering
- The quality of WiFi, but it should be noted that there has to be an available signal for the WiFi to continuously work
#5. Sony XAV-AX3005 Premium
We’re rounding off our list with another fantastic Sony product, the XAV-AX3005 Premium Media Receiver. It differs from older, similar models in that is has a new, modern design and illuminated buttons for optimal operation in dark conditions or during nighttime driving.
It has an improved audio quality as well and sports a clear, responsive 6.95-inch color touchscreen. You can expect fantastic, high-quality voice control with Android Auto or Apple CarPlay, as the unit responds to voice commands through both Siri and Google.
- Clear, responsive 6.95-inch color touchscreen
- Full voice control available for any operating system
- Modern, stylish design
- Illuminated buttons make it easy to see in the dark
- It does not have any DVD or CD slots
- Apple connections may seem awkward or actual screen input, though Siri works well
Auto Head Unit for Androids Buying Considerations
Single vs Double DIN
If you’re unsure of what the terms “single DIN” and “double DIN” mean, don’t worry. These are just the terms used to refer to the standard sizes of head units that may be found in your vehicle. All of the head units on this review are double DIN models, and are typically four-inches tall, while the single DIN units are around two inches tall without accounting for any CD slots. Double DIN units, additionally, have more internal space and also typically have built-in amplifiers and other similar add-ons.
For the most part, you shouldn’t be looking at your screen display while driving in the first place – it can be dangerous. But, that considered, if you do have to look at a display, you want it to be big enough to be easily visible without having to squint or crane your neck, and you want it to have a crisp, clear image that’s easy to see. The larger and clearer the display, the easier it will be to quickly spare a glance to check your current route or change your music choice. This minimizes the time your eyes are off the road and is arguably safer than the alternative.
Functionality and Practicality
When deciding on which Android Auto compatible head unit will work best for you and your vehicle, you want one that will be not only useful but easy and intuitive to use. You want a unit with all of the features and functionality you crave, but that isn’t too loaded down with unneeded, unnecessary features that you won’t use.
You also want to be sure that the interface is user-friendly, and being customizable is an added bonus that many consider mandatory so that they can easily reach all of their needed functions and apps.
The Final Word
Having an Android capable system in your vehicle will allow you to unlock the full potential, power, and convenience of your smartphone without sacrificing safety or exerting any extra effort while behind the wheel of your car. From streaming music to accessing your messages, you’ll be able to do it all through either voice commands or steering wheel controls if you have the right unit installed and configured. Because these are so expensive to purchase getting it right first time is a must, that’s why we’ve selected the Pumpkin Android 9.0 as our best Android auto head unit choice overall.