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Dodge Magnum Modifications

Mopar U-Connect.

I originally ordered UConnect with my Dodge Magnum, but when I got impatient and hunted one down from dealer stock, UConnect wasn't on the option list; so I bought the Mopar add-on. Installation is not as clean as the factory-integrated version, which is encapsulated entirely in a special rear-view mirror (whose auto-dimming feature I am not crazy about).

The Mopar UConnect instead uses an add-on panel, which I do not find particularly displeasing. I prefer a solid in-dash control, even when placed as it is. The unit is completely solid and does not feel tacked-on, even though it very likely is. Also tacked on is the microphone, which sits on the front lighting console. Again not as clean as a DC-install, but workable and well-made. It remains to be seen if high in-vehicle heat will melt the glue as it occasionally has in my previous hands-free systems.

Sound does not come thru the stereo, but instead through a dedicated speaker stashed under-dash to the left of the steering wheel. Sound is reasonable and, unless you are like me and add ridiculous power and noisy mufflers, you will be able to hear your conversations just fine even at highway speeds.

I have found the voice-dialing system not to always be accurate; getting numbers wrong occasionally when doing extended voice dialing. You can live with this best by telling UConnect just the first three digits, let it repeat them back to you, give it the next three, and then the last four. Once it repeats back the last four you say "dial" and it repeats the number back in its entirety, asking for confirmation. You say "yes" and the call goes through. This is moderatley more tedious but if it misinterprets your vocal input you just have to give the most recent few numbers again. Regardless, using voice dialing is a gigantic step forward in safety over any hand-dialed system. Talking hands-free is quite safe. Dialing a phone, even in a cradle, is about as dangerous of a practice as you can imagine and I'm not sorry at all to leave that behind.

One neat experience: I tossed my mountain bike and my backpack into the back of the car and was driving home. The phone was in the backpack. It was real nice to hear that phone ring in the back and still be able to push a button on the dash and answer the call.

Another noteworthy item: If you push the button and say "Emergency" you get 9-1-1.