Subaru Crosstrek and XV Forums banner

1 - 11 of 11 Posts

68 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
This will be a tutorial for those looking to retrofit the CarPlay / Android Auto radios that come with the 2019+ WRX.

Final Pic

Where do I begin. In 2013 when I bought my Crosstrek I was very excited to get my first car with built-in navigation. Over the years though, I noticed myself using my phone for my drive to/from work to get real-time traffic updates. I tried the SiriusXM traffic on the built-in unit but found it completely inaccurate leading me right into traffic jams or taking me miles from the main route because it thought a jam that cleared several hours earlier was still present. I then started using my phone for vacation trips as well making the in-car nav pretty much useless unless I was lost with no cell service. Subaru upgraded the Crosstrek's radio to support Android Auto / Apple CarPlay, however this was only done on the 2018+ models with a completely new head unit that wouldn't fit into the first generation XV. At this point I could have done what many of you did and purchased an aftermarket double DIN radio, or one of those Android units but aftermarket radios have never been my thing. I always thought the bezel around single/double DIN radios looked tacky and took away from the interior. Even the Seicane android units jet out like someone glued a tablet screen onto a radio and I've had issues such as poor FM reception or UI lag when trying those in the past. Completely fine if you went that route, they are just personally not for me so my quest for OEM continued. A short time after I heard that the 2019 WRX was getting these features and immediately got excited seeing that the radio's physical shape would be a direct fit into my Crosstrek. I set up an eBay search back in 2018 and combed regularly hoping someone would list one. I would sometimes see auctions for the 6" & 7" PHONE button radios but I wanted one with the MAP button, a rarer radio only included on 2019 - 2020 WRX/STI's with Harman Kardon audio. Why would I need this if I intend to use Android Auto? There are times where I have been in very remote parts of New England with no cell service, in these times using the built-in Nav with the maps pre-loaded onto the Head Unit was my only option, so I wanted to retain that functionality as a safety net. After almost two years of searching, finally in May of 2020 one of these radios popped up for sale and I jumped on it immediately!

Parts List
Radio 86471VA610 (MAP) 86471VA620 (PHONE) 19-20 WRX w/ Pigtails​
Amplifier 86221va050 19-20 WRX w/ Pigtails​
Wire 18Ga 18 Colors 10FT​
Wire 22Ga 11 Colors 10FT​
Wire 14Ga 2 Colors 15Ft​
Roof Wiring Harness 86325FJ940 15-20 WRX 15-17 XV 15-17 Impreza (Two Optional)​
GPS Antenna 86277CA120 18-20 BRZ (Optional)​
USB Cable 86273VA080 18-20 WRX​
Center Dash Vent Bezel 15-20 WRX 15-17 XV 15-17 Impreza​
Fuse Box 15-20 WRX w/ Pigtails (Optional)​
Backup Camera 86267FJ500 16-17 XV Impreza (Hatch)​
Tweeters 86301SG130 w/ Pigtails (Optional)​
USB Jack 86257SJ131 w/ Pigtails 2019-2020 WRX XV Impreza Outback Forester Legacy​
Steering Wheel Controls 83154VA300​
Speaker Harness Metra 70-1761​
28-pin Head Unit Wiring Harness by​
SCOSCHE CADSU01 Camera Harness​

Level Setting:
To start my Crosstrek, as mentioned above, was a 2013 with factory Nav. If you have a 2013-2014 with the base radio this swap may be harder as the radio connectors are completely different. It should still be possible but you will need to source alternative pigtail harnesses / adapters to connect to the factory car wiring. For whatever reason the early XV Nav radios just happened to use the same connectors that all 2015+ XV's eventually uses. If you have a 2015+ Crosstrek this swap may be easier as the radio is the same size and things like SirusXM antennas may plug right in. If your XV didn't come with factory Nav and you want to add it, this should also be possible but you will need to mount a GPS antenna, the stock location is under the dash pad above the instrument cluster. This guide will assume you are going from a 2013-2014 XV with Nav, to a 2019-2020 WRX Radio with a MAP button, but those in different boats looking to do the same should be able to take the tips here and apply them to their own situation.

When looking for parts such as the radio and Amp, I can't stress this enough, ASK FOR THE PIGTAILS!!! Most of these connectors are proprietary, you could try reaching out to & but it's much easier to have the junk yard include them with the radio/amp. You can certainly hack up your harness if you'd like to, but my method was to not make a single cut in existing factory wires.

So you have all the parts, now what? If you are just wanting CarPlay / Android Auto and are fine with a PHONE button radio you can skip most of this guide and just reference items such as the camera section and the door switch wiring, you won't need to build as big of a harness as I do below. Assuming you are up for the challenge of upgrading to a MAP radio you'll need to start building an adapter harness. No 13-17 Crosstrek came with Harman Kardon audio. On our radios the speakers are wired directly to the back of the head unit. On the 15-20 WRX/STI's with HK audio there will be an Amplifier mounted in the trunk. The radio sends L/R channel audio to the amplifier as well as several data signals. The amplifier then interprets that and individually drives each speaker, which for the HK WRX have their wires leading to the trunk of the car. To get this working on a Crosstrek you will need to build a sender and receiver adapter harness. The idea came from "apoteker" on the TacomaWorld forums. He and myself did the same thing several years back in a Tacoma, adding a JBL Navigation radio w/ Amp to a Taco that came with only the base audio which you can read about here. What this harness will do is allow you to mount the Amp elsewhere (in my case under the front passenger seat) and still drive the speakers without needing to re-route every speaker wire directly to the amp. The harness will connect to the back of the radio, and "send" the data to the amp. The amp will then reply back with the speaker output which will travel back up the harness along the "receiver" wires to the speaker connectors already behind the radio. Think of this as a detour, the radio will no longer talk directly to the speakers, the amp will now act as a translator in-between.

The harness is essentially a re-mapping exercise. Using the service manual radio pinouts from the 2019 WRX, and using the service manual from the 2013 XV, I had to study both an play spot the difference looking for things like PKB was Pin 6 on the 2013 radio, yet the 2019 radio is expecting this on Pin 15. Both manuals are available on Subaru TechNet which is $35 for a 3-day pass. I included the bits I used here, but if you need more info it's easy to grab the full PDF. I believe after everything it was just over 40-wires that I had to re-map.

At this point you may already be overwhelmed. Once you get going it's actually pretty simple, there is nothing special going on, just connecting wires from A to B where they need to go based on the manual. I'd recommend starting with something small like the camera connector and working your way to the larger items such as the amp. Once you have all the re-mapping work planned out it's time to bust out that soldering iron. All of the wires in the harness I built were soldered and heat shrunk wrapped. This part was actually pretty relaxing spending an hour so after work each night one by one soldering connections at my dining room table. Color coding is optional but makes things easier. I bought a pack of 11 different colors of 22Ga wire which was used for the "sender" data lines, a pack of 18 different colors of 18Ga wire which was used for the "reply" speaker line, and two strands of 14Ga wire to be used for Amp power and ground. I had some colors left over but can't remember how many. The length I chose for the harness from radio to amp was 7ft.

In the manual you will notice that 6 of the "sender" data lines (A1, A2, A5, A6, B2, B6) are shielded, apoteker recommended wrapping these lines in foil tape, connecting that tape to the wire from the the ground pin (B4 in this case), then wrapping in pipe thread tape (I used the thicker yellow oil type), and finally a layer of electrical tape as a DIY shield. The "sender" lines will go from the 28, 6, & 10-pin pigtail connectors included with the radio, to the pigtails included with the amplifier. For this I used a 28-pin Head Unit Wiring Harness by Left unmodified it acts as an extension cable with a male end on one side, and female on the other. This harness will allow you to tap into the 28-pin signals as needed without having to hack up your existing harness. The "receiver" lines will go from the pigtails on the amplifier, to the Metra 70-1761 harness which plugs in to the factory speaker connectors. Not needed but I de-pinned any of the lines on the 28-pin harness that were marked as not used. I also needed an extra connector for the Metra 70-1761 harness as all of the lead spots were not populated. I had an old 99 Toyota Camry floor harness in my garage that I was able to harvest a lead with the correct pin type off of but I'm sure they can be sourced normally as well.

Pic showing the foil tape shield mid-build

The backup camera connector has also changed. You will need to use the male end (with pins showing) of the SCOSCHE CADSU01 conenctor, and then re-map the wires to the 5-pin pigtail connector on the back of the radio. This pigtail will only have 4 wires so you'll notice that one of the lines now goes to the main 28-pin harness on the radio end. I de-pinned any wires that were not used. You will also need to swap to a newer camera part # 86267FJ500. While my 2013 Camera displayed the video fine, it would not show the guide lines. Seeing the 2018 WRX guys didn't seem to have this issue when they swapped I thought I might try a newer Crosstrek Camera. I tossed it in and sure enough the guide lines worked again!

Pic showing the camera harness section

The radio will of course still need power so a few of the lines from the 10 & 6-pin connectors on the back of the radio will not need to go to the amp, but will instead connect directly to the Metra 70-1761.

Pic showing the 10 pin connectors on each end

In our Crosstrek the factory tweeters are driven off of the same lines as the front L/R door speakers. The HK Amp however drives these individually and actually uses them uniquely. The front door speakers in HK cars are used exclusively for low-end bassy tones while the tweeters are used for high-end treble. You will need to separate these channels or the audio will be awful in the car. I purchased a pair of HK Tweeters part# 86301SG130 (mostly for the pigtail connector but I figured why not upgrade) and ran longer lines directly from the amp to the pigtails. You could also skip buying the tweeters, determine where the stock wiring combines these signals, and try to tap in there but it seemed easier in this case just run two new lines for each tweeter, and then utilize the stock Front L/R lines already in the car exclusively for the door speakers. Since these had to go a little farther to snake up under the dash I used 10ft of wire.

Pic showing the tweeter leads

Completed Main Harness

SiriusXM & GPS connections were my next hurdle. The 2013 XV uses widely available Fakra connectors, however Subaru has since switched to Sumitomo HFC connectors. You can read about them more here if wanted. These are not widely available and require bulk ordering. I chose to put together an adapter instead. For SirusXM this was easy, simply use roof radio harness part # 86325FJ940 , take out the old piece behind the radio by unplugging the Green & Grey connectors, and put in the new piece which now has one white and one blue (FM & Sirus) connectors on the end.

SirusXM Antenna wires old and new

The GPS however was a little harder and can be done two ways. You can purchase a GPS antenna part # 86277CA120, mount it and be done, or you can make an adapter. When I ordered the roof harness 86325FJ940, it came attached with an additional length of wire. There was no separate part number on them so I am not sure if Subaru considers this part of 86325FJ940 or not. On that harness though you will see two square green male connectors noticing that they are the same as the stock 2013 GPS antenna connector. Remember when I said to get pigtails? Well you can now gently remove that grey GPS HFC connector from the wire, gently remove the blue Sirius connector from the second 86325FJ940 roof harness (yes I bought two), and place the grey connector on the end since the SMA wire inside is the same. This then gives you an adapter harness that goes from the factory 2013 green connector, to the 2019 grey connector without having to dig under the dash and swap out an antenna.

GPs Antenna cable adapter


68 Posts
Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
To power this amp it helped that I also had a 2016 WRX with HK audio to reference as much of the 2019 WRX is still the same. Looking at the Factory Service Manual I saw that the amp got its power from Fuse No.5 in the under-hood fuse box. This fuse connected to the large brown 9-pin (D) connector. In the WRX this travels behind the kick panel on the front passenger side. I looked on my Crosstrek though and this wire was not present behind the kick panel. I then checked the fuse box and saw that I had this connector and a spot for the fuse but there was no lead going to the connector pin I needed, and the fuse was empty. Now I'm sure I could have bought the correct terminal connector type, but felt it was easier just to buy a cheap used full fuse box from a WRX with pigtails. I could then harvest the single white wire I needed from Pin 1 as well as the 25-A fuse setting the WRX fuse box aside for future projects. I ran a 14Ga wire from the Amp, through the firewall, to the fuse box, soldered it to the white lead, placed that into the empty spot on my 2013 XV's connector, and placed in the 25A fuse. I connected amp Ground to the little bolt stub already present behind the carpet under my seat and voila I had power.

Brown connector under fuse box

New 25A Fuse

Firewall spot to snake wire, with a bit of RTV to seal up

To use Android Audo / Apple CarPlay you will need to upgrade the USB jack. The stock one only outputs enough power for a slow charge, where as the 2019+ part # 86257SJ131 supplied 2.1A to the phone so it doesn't die while operating. The jack fits into the center console directly where the existing one is. You will need a new data cable to go from the jack to the radio part # 86273VA080. The other connector on the new USB jack is completely different and is responsible for power / AUX in. The existing 6-pin connector will have to be de-pinned, and again using the pigtail you got with the new USB jack, you will have to remove the 5 wires from the current connector, trim the small protruding metal tab from each so that they fit, and re-pin them into the correct spots of the new 8-pin connector. I could have tried to source an adapter to do this without re-pinning but it's still reversible and even if the radio swap was a fail, I wanted the 2.1A USB port. The new 8-pin connector will also require ACC power which I assume is to know when/when not to provide so that if your car is off, it doesn't kill the battery charging a phone. For this you can tap the other end into that Metra 70-1761 connector to the same ACC signal used for the Radio/Amp.

2013 USB / Aux Connector

2019 USB / Aux connector

New USB Jack

The Steering wheel controls you will notice are now all mapped incorrectly. Seek- is Vol Up & Vol+ is now Vol Down etc. I actually passed on this for now but to correct these you will need to obtain the 2019+ Steering Wheel controls part# 83154VA300, remove the steering wheel including the airbag, and swap in the new buttons. I'll mess around with many things but I always hesitate at safety equipment. I actually tried to be clever and see if I could use a device like the Metra Axxess ASWC-1 to translate these controls, however for some reason most of these devices do not allow re-mapping of Vol+. Not sure why as you can customize the other buttons, but I tried all of the built-in pre-sets and none mapped Vol+ correctly. This meant that these devices would not be an option. I have seen some write custom code using an Arduino to output the correct resistor values (which are readily provided in the FSM) so I may try that as a fun little project at some point, but for now I am using the existing controls and just have to remember which buttons do what now until I either have time or get brave enough to remove my airbag. Perhaps Subaru will have a recall at some point like they did for the older model cars recently and I can do it then before bringing it in :).

The new 2019+ Radios also have a new feature where they will remain on after the car has turned off until the driver door is opened. For this you will need to run a single wire from the head unit to the driver door switch. The factory wire goes into pin 1 of the door switch which when de-pressed is ground. There was an empty spot on pin 2 which using a multimeter I also determined functioned the same grounding when the switch was opened. I used one of the pin connectors I removed from the 28-pin harness as it was the same and fit it into pin 2 of the door switch. I ran the other end of this under the door jam trim to the single blue wire coming out of the 12-pin pigtail on the radio.

Pic of the door switch

Finally you will notice that the new radio will not fit with your existing center bezel. The HVAC knobs simply swap out using 4 screws behind the bezel and will fit right into the new radio. You will need a newer Center Dash Vent Bezel though to accommodate the new radio. The hazard switch connector should be the same. You may notice on mine that I have the MFD button controls. This does nothing right now but I have seen a few of you upgrade to the fancier WRX/Forester MFD's so perhaps in the future I will use that too.

As far as wiring goes I believe I used about 7ft from the radio to the amp which was perfect. I removed the center arm rest which comes out with 3 screws, routed the new harness as well as the new USB data harness part # 86273VA080 from the radio, under the center cup holder / arm rest, and down to the amp under the seat making the whole install incredibly clean. Everything is completely reversible with no cutting done so at any point the stock radio can go right back in. My 2013 didn't have Telemantics so I just removed the unit from the radio and haven't noticed any issues,

I may be forgetting some but here is a mapping of the wires that need to be changed

2019 Radio -> Amplifier
10-Pin No 1 -> 28-Pin Black No 7 (FR+/R+)
10-Pin No 2 -> 28-Pin Black No 6 (FL+/L+)
10-Pin No 3 -> 28-Pin White No 8 (ACC)
10-Pin No 5 -> 28-Pin Black No 21 (FR-/R-)
10-Pin No 6 -> 28-Pin Black No 20 (FL-/L-)
6-Pin No 2 -> 28-Pin White No 7 (INT/IL1+)
6-Pin No 6 -> 28-Pin White No 21 (INT-/IL-)
28-Pin No 7 -> 28-Pin White No 6 (CAN+/TX+)
28-Pin No 8 -> 28-Pin White No 5 (CAN-/TX-)
6-Pin No 4 -> Foil Tape Shield

2013 Dash Harness <- Amplifier
10-Pin No 1 <- 28-Pin Black No 1 (FR+)
TWR No 2 <- 28-Pin Black No 2 (TWR+)
6-Pin No 1 <- 28-Pin Black No 3 (RR+)
6-Pin No 2 <- 28-Pin Black No 13 (RL+)
TWL No 2 <- 28-Pin Black No 14 (TWL+)
10-Pin No 2 <- 28-Pin Black No 15 (FL+)
10-Pin No 5 <- 28-Pin Black No 16 (FR-)
TWR No 1 <- 28-Pin Black No 17 (TWR-)
6-Pin No 3 <- 28-Pin Black No 18 (RR-)
6-Pin No 6 <- 28-Pin Black No 26 (RL-)
TWL No 1 <- 28-Pin Black No 27 (TWL-)
10-Pin No 6 <- 28-Pin Black No 28 (FL-)

Fuse Box -> Amplifier
9-Pin No 1 -> 28-Pin White No 12 & No 15 (Power/+B)

Body -> Amplifier
Bolt Stub Under Pass Seat Carpet -> 28-Pin White No 25 & No 28 (Ground/GND)
Bolt Stub Under Pass Seat Carpet -> Amplifier metal bracket

Camera Car -> 2019 Radio
16-Pin No 7 -> 5-Pin No 2 (6V+)
16-Pin No 8 -> 5-Pin No 3 (CA+)
16-Pin No 16 -> 5-Pin No 1 (GND)
16-Pin No 15 -> 5-Pin No 4 (CA-)
16-Pin No 6 -> 28-Pin No 15 (PKB)

2013 Dash Harness -> 2019 Radio
10-Pin No 3 -> 10-Pin No 3 (ACC)
10-Pin No 4 -> 10-Pin No 4 (B)
10-Pin No 7 -> 10-Pin No 7 (GND)
10-Pin No 8 -> 10-Pin No 8 (ANT-ON)
10-Pin No 10 -> 10-Pin No 10 (ILL+)
6-Pin No 5 -> 6-Pin No 5 (ILL-)

2013 USB Harness -> 2019 USB Jack
6-Pin No 6 -> 8-Pin No 8 (L SING)
6-Pin No 2 -> 8-Pin No 7 (R SING)
6-Pin No 4 -> 8-Pin No 4 (FRONT ON)
6-Pin No 1 -> 8-Pin No 3 (R/L SING)
6-Pin No 5 -> 8-Pin No 1 (GND)

2013 Dash Harness -> 2019 USB Jack
10-Pin No 3 -> 8-Pin No 5 (ACC)

2019 Radio -> Door Switch
12-Pin No 4 -> 3-Pin No 2 (Switched GND)


68 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Pic of the Amp cleanly under the seat. Still need to strap down.

Final thoughts. Was this a lot of work? Yes, but it was also a lot of fun figuring all of this out. Was it worth the cost? For me to retain the OEM look yes. I now have a HK Amp so I could also go after the HK Door speakers and Sub if I wanted and put them in with little additional work. Am I going to start making harnesses for others that want them? I couldn't if I wanted to. I would need to find a consistent source for all of those pigtail connectors and simply lack the time to do it. This was a one-off for me, or a two-off if you count the tacoma I did a while back, but I wanted to share the info in the hopes that someone else may give this a try as well.

Link showing the radio in action:

There was one other idea I thought of. There is a 2019 Outback radio out there that has Nav but does not require an Amp part # 86471AL67A. The faceplate on these radios is however too big for our Crosstrek, BUT Subaru's being like Leggos the connector on both radios is the same physically as seen below. I wondered if you could just swap the 2019 WRX MAP radio face onto the 2019 Outback MAP radio and avoid all of the extra work to make a harness for the amp. Given how rare these WRX radios currently are I did not want to take the chance of the connector being electrically different but it was an idea.

Rear Faceplates of Outback & WRX Radio

68 Posts
Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Attached are the Sections from the 2013 & 2019 Service Manuals that I referenced.

NOTE: On the page showing the 2019 Amp connectors, they show the amplifier plastic side down with connector (A) R386 being on the left and connector (B) R316 on the right. This is actually INCORRECT in the service manual. (B) which is the black connector is actually on the left, and (A) the white connector is on the right.

Also, check out the guide I wrote for doin the same in a 2016 WRX! How to Swap in a 2019 Harman Kardon OEM Apple CarPlay Head Unit to a 15-18 WRX - NASIOC


143 Posts
Yes Impressive, I thought about this a year or so ago but now I see its doable.

2 Posts
To start off, this was a godsend. I've got a 2020 wrx and I have been looking everywhere for these wiring diagrams.
I am planning on adding an amp and sub but I am not sure whether to tap off of WF1 and 2 +/- or the L/R +/- for my input signal. The Idea is that if I tap off of the WF lines, I'll be getting whatever filtering the HK amplifier does but if I tap off L/R lines I should be getting raw signal.
Another thing I am unsure about is whether the L/R lines are high or low level signals. Any idea on that? Doesn't matter to me either way, I'd just like to know.
I have also read that the HK amplifier controls the volume independently from the head unit which may mean that if I tap the L/R lines the volume knob will not affect the output of my aftermarket amp and thus the sub that I put in there. Is there any validity to that?
Thanks again for writing this up.

68 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
To start off, this was a godsend. I've got a 2020 wrx and I have been looking everywhere for these wiring diagrams.
I am planning on adding an amp and sub but I am not sure whether to tap off of WF1 and 2 +/- or the L/R +/- for my input signal. The Idea is that if I tap off of the WF lines, I'll be getting whatever filtering the HK amplifier does but if I tap off L/R lines I should be getting raw signal.
Another thing I am unsure about is whether the L/R lines are high or low level signals. Any idea on that? Doesn't matter to me either way, I'd just like to know.
I have also read that the HK amplifier controls the volume independently from the head unit which may mean that if I tap the L/R lines the volume knob will not affect the output of my aftermarket amp and thus the sub that I put in there. Is there any validity to that?
Thanks again for writing this up.
I believe you are correct in that the 2019/20 WRX MAP Radio only sends line level audio to the amp and that the amp handles all of the volume control. When testing I hooked my speakers up directly to the radio I think using the FR/FL +/- and I could hear sound but the volume knob did nothing. If you want to control volume you will have to tap into the amp, and like you said, have to deal with any filtering the HK Amp does. The pdf I attached should have pull pinouts for the wiring. I wonder if it would sound better to tap into the front/rear speaker lines than the WF1 / 2. Let us know how it goes!

2 Posts
Is the idea that the RR/RL for example in theory should have less filtering because they are more general speakers than the sub? That certainly makes the right left question easier, not that I think it matters, because what I'll be putting in there is mono. I was going to put WF1 on the left and WF2 on the right but one of the speaker channels sounds like a better idea.

68 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Is the idea that the RR/RL for example in theory should have less filtering because they are more general speakers than the sub? That certainly makes the right left question easier, not that I think it matters, because what I'll be putting in there is mono. I was going to put WF1 on the left and WF2 on the right but one of the speaker channels sounds like a better idea.
Yeah you will probably have to experiment and see what sounds best. It may depend a lot too on whichever speakers you use. But yeah if you want a cleaner sound sample the rear door speakers will probably be closer to line audio.
1 - 11 of 11 Posts