Android Auto in Perodua Axia 1.0 Standard E

Android Auto Copy 1

Recently I got a new Perodua Axia and I went for the low spec model which was quite bare. No radio, no central locking and only available as a manual.

The bare interior

This gave me an opportunity to install my own DIY car radio. I could have gone for a standard single DIN car radio with Bluetooth but that’s boring. Having recently drove a new Kia with Android Auto, this gave me an idea.

Android Auto is a mobile app developed by Google to mirror features from an Android device, such as a smartphone, to a car’s compatible in-dash information and entertainment head unit.

I searched on the Internet for Android Auto projects and came across Crankshaft running on Raspberry Pi.

http://getcrankshaft.com/

Therefore, I started shopping for parts (new and secondhand).

  1. Raspberry Pi 3 ($40)
Found someone selling on Carousell and managed to negotiate it down to $40

2. 7-inch Touch Screen ($100)

Managed to negotiate it down to $100

3. A pair of car speakers ($27.50)

Got a pair of cheap but decent speakers from AliExpress

4. Audio Amplifier Board ($9.20)

Audio amplifier is needed to drive the big speakers because the output power from the Raspberry Pi won’t be enough

5. DC-DC Converter ($3.31)

To convert the car’s 12V DC power to 5V to run the Raspberry Pi and the Touch Screen
This is a buck converter so it’s more efficient and runs cooler compared to linear voltage regulators.

6. 12V Delay Relay ($2.68)

This relay will wait for a few seconds before closing to ensure that when the car key is turned from off to acc to start, the Raspberry Pi won’t turn on and off.

7. Sandisk Ultra MicroSD 32GB ($8.90)

To store the Crankshaft OS for the Raspbery Pi to boot on

Designed a basic schematic for all the connections:

First, we need to load the Crankshaft OS image into the Micro SD card.

Download the latest Crankshaft image from the website
Using Etcher to write the image file into the MicroSD card

Setup the test connection at home first before transferring it to the car.

Everything was tested and working fine

Removing the dashboard panel to install the Raspberry Pi, Touch Screen and audio amplifier.

Removing the control knobs reveal the screw
Carefully detaching the dashboard panel and releasing all original cable harnesses

Then I proceeded to move the dashboard panel home so I can install it comfortably and solder the connections carefully.

Getting the placement of the screen centered and doing measurements. I can’t afford any mistakes.
Making a paper template by tracing the screw holes to ensure accurate drilling
Bought a Dremel tool from AliExpress just for this project
Carefully drilling the holes to mount the touch screen
Need to cut out a hole to allow the touch screen controller to fit behind the touch screen
Test fitting the touch screen

I didn’t want to use a 3.5mm to 3.5mm audio cable which takes up space so I directly soldered the audio connections between the Raspberry Pi and the Audio Amplifier.

Bridged the left, right and ground audio signals

Mounting all of the components on the back of the dashboard panel.

Testing to ensure everything is working fine.

Time to take apart the door panels to install the pair of speakers.

Starting from the left hand side
Pull out the armrest and disconnect the cable harness
Undo all screws and carefully pull out the door panel to reveal the insides of the door
Install the speaker in the pre-cut hole
Routing the speaker cable through the door gasket to ensure cable is protected from water

Rinse and repeat for the right hand side door

Carefully removing the driver side armrest
Installing the right speaker

I decided to tap the 12V DC power from the cigarette lighter socket because it is the most convenient

Disconnecting power to the cigarette lighter socket
Soldering the 12V DC power cable in parallel to the cigarette lighter socket power

Installing back the dashboard panel with all of the components

Making sure none of the wires are bring pressed on

And… It works!

I now have a fully functioning Android Auto head unit on my low spec Perodua Axia

Can use it for navigation too!

The total cost for this project is as follows:

If you need any guidance on your DIY Android Auto project feel free to contact me 🙂

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