You can now add CarPlay to your Tesla if you're up to the task

Tesla Model Y
Tesla Model Y (Image credit: Tesla)

What you need to know

  • A developer has released the software needed to get CarPlay running on a Tesla car.
  • Specific hardware is required to make the CarPlay hack work.

The lack of CarPlay support in modern Tesla cars remains a baffling decision, but that doesn't mean that there aren't ways and means to fix that omission. There is now a way to run CarPlay via a Tesla entertainment system — but you're going to need to jump through some hoops to make it work.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk might be too busy buying Twitter to give Tesla drivers CarPlay despite their pleading, but Polish developer Michał Gapiński is here to lend a hand. We heard about his using a Raspberry Pi to add CarPlay to his Tesla Model 3 earlier this year, and now the same feature is available for everyone to try according to a Tesla North report.

Everything you need in terms of software is available via the Tesla Android Github page, but you're also going to need a couple of Raspberry Pi devices and a few other bits and pieces. You can read more about what's needed on the developer's website. That's where you'll find the installation guide, too.

Of course, getting this all up and running isn't something for everyone but those who do what's required will be able o enjoy CarPlay on one half of their massive Tesla display. It's all pretty impressive — hopefully it's so impressive that someone at Tesla will decide to make it less hacky and actually offer CarPlay support as a first-party option.

You know, like pretty much every major carmaker on the planet at this point.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.