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Fusion iPod-Docking Car Stereos Hitting Best Buy Shelves

9/17/2008 03:25:00 PM Eastern

Phoenix — Fusion is offering the first car receiver that permits an iPod to dock directly inside of the head unit. It will be carried in all Best Buy stores starting Oct. 15.

Best Buy will also carry a marine audio version of the product, also with inside-the-unit iPod docking, in 200 select stores, said Fusion.

The company’s CA-IP500 iPod car receiver has no CD mechanism but it has a pull-down faceplate that opens so an iPod can be slid inside for docking. It will carry a suggested retail of $249.

All iPods purchased in the last 2.5 years, with the exception of the iPod Shuffle, first-generation iPod Nano, and first-generation iPhone, will work with the CA-IP500. Fusion USA president Todd Crocker said future head units will work with future iPods, as “it is very, very simple to unlock a dock and slide a new version in.”

The iPod is controlled by the head unit, which displays the same menu system shown on the iPod itself. For a controller, the CA-IP500 has a dual function rotary knob/joystick.

Future versions of the CA-IP500 may also add satellite radio, HD Radio or Bluetooth, although the current model does not.

Fusion began shipping in April a marine “inside iPod-docking” model that sold through stores such as West Marine, but the CA-IP500 is the first car stereo version.