Articles & Videos: Factory System Upgrades

Upgrade your car's sound
by Buck Pomerantz

Factory stereo systems leave a lot to be desired. This problem now has some solutions that let you keep your factory stereo and get spectacular sound, customized for your specific vehicle. The four upgrade systems we discuss in this article improve the factory sound of different vehicles in different ways.

After a little over a year of driving my 2011 Subaru Impreza, I knew it was time to change out the system from factory equipped to an aftermarket setup. It also made sense to upgrade since I write all things speaker and subwoofer related for Crutchfield, and I get to hear amazing car stereo equipment on a regular basis thanks to our labs. The final product sounds amazing, and helps me enjoy riding around town even more.

Russ, a Crutchfield employee, didn't like the lack of bass and poor high-frequency clarity in the "premium" system of his 2008 BMW 335i. He decided to try the Focal IFBMW-S and IFBMW-C custom-fit speakers, designed specifically for his BMW.

We discuss three approaches to upgrading the performance of the factory stereo system in a truck. Specialty products from Kicker and JL Audio make it possible to keep your factory radio and features, but give your audio system a complete overhaul.

The Kicker VSS Powerstage system upgrade will transform your vehicle's stock radio and speakers into a high-fidelity sound system capable of giving you full, accurate, and richly-textured musical pleasure. And it does it without changing the look of your interior or dash.

JL Audio's StealthMod gives you superb JL Audio sound without giving up your factory controls. This package allows you to replace the front door speakers and increase the overall power in your system, bringing excitement, impact, and a new clarity to your music.

Find what fits your car