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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm new to the community, I don't know if this was done before, but I think it would be great if we could ALL email FCA requesting a firmware update/retrofit cable to get carplay working without having to "hack" the car. I would even be willing to pay fiat for the retrofit kit/service (~$250ish)

It's not just about better navigation, it's about having access to a better/nicer interface, siri, messages, audiobooks, etc.

(It might also add some kind of resale value)

What do you think?
 

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I badgered FCA customer support about this via calls and survey responses for quite awhile in the past. As with other owners, I’m willing to pay for an upgrade similar to what Mazda offered (I took advantage of this for my 2016 Mazda CX-5). CarPlay offers a simpler, safer, and more effective interface than the stock factory functionality. I can see myself getting into an accident while futzing around with the complicated and inefficient factory nav system.
 
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I have CarPlay. I didn’t bother with Fiat or paying $250. Did you try searching the forum?

Unfortunately some of us have cars with the most recent factory firmware that requires a somewhat complicated and involved hardware hack that must be performed prior to modifying the software. Unless off course someone has recently come up with a workaround that doesn’t require the hardware hack (tapping into ports on the CMU, soldering jumpers, etc). Qoute from Americans great blog: “If you have a 2018 or 2019 with the version 59 firmware already installed (or your dealer updated you to it during a service), there is an alternative method of installing the patch described at Serial Connection which is much more involved, but currently it remains your only option.”
 
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There was a lot of talk that went around the forum about this about a year ago. The consensus: FCA is just not interested in providing an AA/CarPlay retrofit or upgrade kit. It is unfortunate but what many of us have come to understand is FCA's SOP: Crummy support.

It's true that those of us with '17 and early '18 models had a relatively easy time installing the s/w that was needed for the retrofit via the USB port. The h/w is a two-hour or less install...the parts basically come apart like Legos. It's mostly popping clips and removing one or two bolts. And the h/w is available on eBay for around $150.00. Unfortunately, for late '18 and newer Spiders, they locked down the s/w such that the required updates cannot be installed via the USB port but have to be installed via a serial connection. That requires removing the CMU/Display and connecting to the serial port on the back of the unit. That's only required the first time though (but it is a PITA). There is a patch available that will re-enable using the USB ports for subsequent tweaks that gets installed during the initial s/w upgrade.

Was this unnecessarily harder? Yes. Should FCA provide the retrofit s/w and h/w? Yes. Will they? IMO, No. Unfortunately, the only way you'll get AA/CarPlay on a Spider is to jump through the hoops that @ameridan and @68wooley have so generously put together.
 

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Having been heavily involved in creating the scripts to modify the Mazda firmware, I can say with a reasonable amount of certainty that it’d take less than a week to create and test an official Fiat version - and I’m being generous here. I actually think it’d be closer to a day to do.

That they haven’t done it is an absolute joke.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Having been heavily involved in creating the scripts to modify the Mazda firmware, I can say with a reasonable amount of certainty that it’d take less than a week to create and test an official Fiat version - and I’m being generous here. I actually think it’d be closer to a day to do.

That they haven’t done it is an absolute joke.
I agree 100%. It's absolutely ridiculous. I have a 2019 Abarth so the hack won't work for me. Much older cars have this and other brands upgrade their firmwares to support AA/Carplay.
In this case, it should be much easier as Mazda has already done 99% of the work.
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I'm plastering their twitter posts about this... I doubt it will make a difference but maybe if we reply in each of their posts! :LOL:
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Btw, I can’t think of any brand in the US selling a car that can go well over $30k that doesn’t have CarPlay in 2020.
 

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Btw, I can’t think of any brand in the US selling a car that can go well over $30k that doesn’t have CarPlay in 2020.
I'm sorry kid, but I don't think you know what you are talking about, lol.
toyota did not even offer carplay on ANY model until less than a year ago.
car play also requires a big screen so any vehicle without the premium entertainment system wont support carplay in 2020.
btw, BMW charges you 80$ PER YEAR just to access carplay in their entertainment system.

also, you seem to misunderstand
you do not need to "hack" your car to install carplay on an abarth
you must update the OEM firmware by mazda who built the car
your car just happens to have a later update designed to prevent hacking which also prevents your firmware from being downgraded to the proper version
anyway, I understand why you are upset, I would be too if I found out after the fact.

if it makes you feel better I have been using android auto and it is, meh.
I still have my car phone mount in the car and need to use it sometimes
 

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  • I badgered FCA customer support about this via calls and survey responses for quite awhile in the past. As with other owners, I’m willing to pay for an upgrade similar to what Mazda offered (I took advantage of this for my 2016 Mazda CX-5). CarPlay offers a simpler, safer, and more effective interface than the stock factory functionality. I can see myself getting into an accident while futzing around with the complicated and inefficient factory nav system.
    The factory Sat Nav is neither complicated or inefficient to use.
 

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A 2019 unit can be hacked. AFAIK, the Fiat s/w has not changed since they updated it in the middle of the ‘18 production run. It does require the serial port hack for the initial v70.00.100A install. There are people with the newer s/w on their Spiders who have done the update.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I'm sorry kid, but I don't think you know what you are talking about, lol.
toyota did not even offer carplay on ANY model until less than a year ago.
car play also requires a big screen so any vehicle without the premium entertainment system wont support carplay in 2020.
btw, BMW charges you 80$ PER YEAR just to access carplay in their entertainment system.
True, some manufacturers just added CarPlay last year, others have had it for years. My father doesn’t pay a dime for it in his 2017 bmw. The point is that all of them have it. Heck, even the 500 has it.

my issue with this is that 99% of the work was done already by Mazda, this is just laziness.

having to install another brands firmware sure sounds like a “hack” to me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
A 2019 unit can be hacked. AFAIK, the Fiat s/w has not changed since they updated it in the middle of the ‘18 production run. It does require the serial port hack for the initial v70.00.100A install. There are people with the newer s/w on their Spiders who have done the update.
thanks, I’ll look into this. I thought it was not possible. Do you guys that have the hack see Mazda’s logo or can this be removed?
 

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There is a patch to “Fiatize” or “Abarthize” the s/w. All the instructions are in @68wooley install guide that @ameridan has published. Just follow the instruction fully, carefully, and in the order listed and you should be OK.
 
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I don’t know that it was ever fully eliminated but on my unit I haven’t seen the Mazda logo briefly (or actually at all) on startup or shutdown in a long time...just the Abarth logos. I think it’s more likely to show after a full reboot than at any other time, but we don’t have any empirical data to prove it.
 
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