The E82 and E88 chassis BMW 1-series are popular due to their compact size, nimble handling, and powerful drivetrain options. While great driver's cars, these cars are generally lacking in the infotainment department and for the most part won't have features like bluetooth music streaming or reverse cameras. Our client wanted these options for his weekend cruiser 135i cabrio so we opted for the latest from Pioneer, the AVH-W4400NEX which is their first receiver with wireless CarPlay and Android Auto.
Interestingly, BMW was one of the first manufacturers to offer wireless CarPlay as an option, although most vehicles in their fleet won't actually have this feature. Installing an aftermarket receiver in a vehicle like this will be more expensive as additional modules are required to make everything work such as the factory warning chimes, steering wheel controls, and factory amplifier.
We used parts from Axxess Interfaces to retain the warning chime and steering wheel controls. Since these aftermarket double din receivers typically have no volume knob to maximize screen size (max 7" on a standard double din), keeping steering wheel controls to control volume certainly comes in handy. We went with a compact cube shaped reverse camera to complement the sleek lines of this BMW, these cameras don't really have any adjustment to them so it's important to test fit and check the video feed before bolting down.
This particular Pioneer receiver is fully loaded with HDMI inputs, memory card input, and DVD player so we made sure to do a parking brake bypass to allow video in motion. In addition to the deck, we also installed the Thinkware FA10 for a basic parking mode dash cam setup. This camera doesn't offer the greatest video quality but is very energy efficient and compact which is ideal for a weekend car.