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Alpine: 9 Inches Is Not Enough For In-Dash Navigation

Alpine has begun shipping in-dash A/V-navigations system with the industry’s first 10-inch display.

The new $4,000 A/V-nav system, available in two variants, is part of Alpine’s Restyle series of car-navigation systems, which are bundled with dash kits for specific SUVs and full-size trucks to retain a factory look. The systems also come with iDatalink Maestro OEM-integration module, which plugs into a vehicle’s databus to retain factory features when the factory radio is removed.

In its Restyle series, Alpine has offered 9-inch models since 2014 and 8-inch models since 2012.

The new Restyle variants are the X110-SLV for 2014-and-later Chevy Silverado pickups and the X110-SRA for 2014-and-later GMC Sierra pickups. Both vehicles are also compatible with the company’s 9- and 8-inch Restyle heads.

The new heads are the company’s first Restyle heads that connect to a separately sold $200 KAC-001 accessory-control module, enabling the touchscreen to  control add-on truck accessories such as motorized tonneau covers, winches, air suspension, LED lights, headlights, and the like. Eight individual outputs are available to control eight relay-connected accessories.

“Alpine conducted extensive research on Silverado and Sierra owners and found a high likelihood that owners will customize their trucks with accessories,” a spokesperson said.

The two heads are also the Alpine’s first with multi-camera control.  With the separately sold $200 KCX-C250MC multi-camera selector, the head controls multiple camera systems from one page of the X110’s touch screen. 

The new models also feature a new GUI, said to enable drivers to be one swipe away from the most-used features. Users swipe to the left to access navigation commands and to the right for A/V commands. From within the A/V screen, users swipe through entertainment sources. Swiping down accesses settings for the audio system or connected rear-seat entertainment system. Users swipe up to access Bluetooth and sources.

Here are additional details on both variations of the nav system:

Restyle systems: Both new versions of the 10-inch head are the first two-chassis Restyle systems in which a processing chassis is separate from the in-dash touchscreen. The processing chassis replaces the OEM radio’s processing chassis. “The result is a completely bolt-in solution with no cutting or modification of the vehicle required,” Alpine said.

The X110-SLV for 2014-up Chevy Silverado trucks comes with a dash bezel that matches the shape and color of the Silverado dash and completely replaces the OEM radio section of the dash. Large function keys provide quick access to the most-used features, such as navigation and music. The keys are back-lit with blue lighting to match the Silverado’s gauge cluster.

The supplied iDataLink Maestro module retains OEM features such as OnStar voice commands and steering wheel controls. The module also enables the aftermarket display to display such vehicle information as tire pressure, check engine codes, and door status.

The X110-SLV also features a split-screen capability available on all other Alpine navigation heads to display maps on one side and the audio source in use on the other.

It also features built-in HD Radio receiver, stereo Bluetooth, “Made for iPod and iPhone” USB, control of the Pandora app on a USB-connected iPhone or Bluetooth-connected Android smartphone.

Bluetooth AVRCP 1.4 and 1.5 enable Bluetooth control of smartphone-stored music. Controllable functions are play, pause, track up/down, forward, backward, group up/down, repeat, and mix. Via the Bluetooth technologies, the head also displays song lists.

Other features include controls for an optional SiriusXM tuner and an HDMI input and output. The HDMI input allows for mirroring of phone displays when the vehicle is parked.

The 10-inch head unit in the Restyle X110-SRA package for 2014-up GMC Sierra pickups offers the same functions. It differs in that the on-screen GUI features red accent lighting and a red color scheme to match the lighting in the Sierra’s gauge cluster.

Alpine offers seven vehicle-specific 9-inch Restyle systems compatible with the Jeep Wrangler, select GM trucks and SUVs, select Ford F-150 trucks, Ram trucks and the Toyota Tundra. An eighth model is a universal-fit version requiring custom installation.