Sony's newest CarPlay head unit won't make you sacrifice existing features in your car

Sony has unveiled its newest AV Center, the XAV-AX210, which brings along with it a bunch of great features and enhancements over your vehicle's current infotainment system, including CarPlay. Often times, when you add an aftermarket radio to your vehicle you're forced to sacrifice some features in order to gain the new ones, but that's not the case with this one. The XAV-AX210 adds iDatalink Maestro support to the 6.4-inch display, which allows you a new way to connect the car's audio without losing the original functionality of the infotainment system.

So, while it adds CarPlay and Android Auto support, it doesn't take away your ability to perform features like controlling your air conditioning, monitoring your vehicle's performance, and more. It also has Bluetooth built-in, so you can make and receive phone calls from your connected phone, and it has an input to add a rearview camera. You can configure it to work with your car's built-in steering wheel controls, and it's also SiriusXM Radio ready, and even has a CD slot for those who still prefer physical media.

Availability will be announced in the fall, along with pricing. It's likely that Sony will come in pretty close to the price of the XAV-AX200 and fall between the $400 and $500 mark. Unless you're in an extreme rush to add CarPlay to your current car, you're better off waiting for this newer model to release than you are buying something like the XAV-AX100, even at its current $348 price point.

Jared DiPane

Jared started off writing about mobile phones back when BlackBerry ruled the market, and Windows Mobile was kinda cool. Now, with a family, mortgage and other responsibilities he has no choice but to look for the best deals, and he's here to share them with you.