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Discussion Starter #1
I have been hanging around this message board and a few others to read what people have to say about the Pioneer AVIC D3 and specifically whether this unit could be installed in a 2007 Mercedes ML350. All the reviews on the unit were favorable but there were reported problems when attempting to install in newer Mercedes vehicles. For starters, the newer vehicles use fiber optic instead of wires to transmit signals between stereo components so adding an aftermarket device would eliminate the steering wheel control, factory blue tooth, and amp functionality. Armed with what I had read, I decided to visit the local audio/video installation shop in my area. On the first visit I inquired about the AVIC D3, which they had one left, and I also used the opportunity to confirm or deny what I read on the message boards. I asked a ton of question but the two questions that were the most important to me were, “Will I retain the steering wheel audio controls” and “Can I use the existing stock amp” and contradictory to what I had read online, I was told Yes and Yes.

Last Friday I dropped off my 2007 ML350 to have the AVIC D3 stereo and backup camera installed and was told that the process should take at most two days. Well on the second day after not receiving a call, I started calling for a status and was told the installer ran into few unexpected problems that needed more time to be worked out. There seemed to be a different problem each time I called which included: :mad:

1. A radio install kit was not available for my SUV so one had to be custom made. :(
2. The stock amp could not be used so they installed two amps under the seat. One amp is strictly for the sub. :mad:
3. The steering wheel audio controls and Bluetooth could not be used. :mad:

Damn Damn and Damn!

Finally I picked my car up last Friday and regret a thousand times over that I decided to go with an aftermarket head unit. The sound is nowhere near what I had and because they kept the vehicle so long I am wondering if something major went wrong that has yet to be discovered. I also notice my SUV carpet is not as tightly installed as it once was which pisses me off every time I look down. :mad: I took the vehicle home and had Friday night and Saturday afternoon to play around with the AVIC D3 and I am extremely unimpressed! :rolleyes: Well let me back up and say while listening to a CD at low volume, the upper rear right speaker was crackling and popping like crazy. :mad: Admittedly the crackling and popping doesn’t happen on all songs but only on songs that play a certain frequency. Nevertheless, I drove the SUV back to the shop the very next day (Saturday) and was told to bring it back today which is where the SUV is now. Although customer service at this shop seems to be decent, one of the store managers did suggest on Saturday that the speaker could have already been blown. WTF!!! I didn’t go out and by new CD’s after driving from the shop Friday night so if the speaker was already blown, I would have heard it via the stock stereo playing the same damn CD. By the way, the crackling and popping can be heard at very low volume which I duplicated while at the shop Saturday.



There are many things about the AVIC D3 I like but there are a few major things I do not like.

1. The sun glare on the screen.
2. The inability to edit route once loaded into memory
3. The inability to search POI’s from route loaded in memory.
4. The slow process of performing an IPod song, artist, genre, title, etc search

5. The quirkiness of the navigation vicinity search.
6. The weak FM signal. I lost several of my favorite stations after upgrading to this unit because it cannot pull them in.

7. Routing isn’t as granular as other navigations I have used. For instance, I take the same route to work everyday which was found by my portable garmin because I wanted to avoid all highways and toll roads. Even though I selected avoid Freeways and toll roads on the AVIC D3, the navigation still routed me on both! I even started driving my normal route to work hoping that it would recalculate and get with the program but instead it kept insisting that I make a u-turn.

Maybe I need to have the unit in my possession a lil longer to fully appreciate it.

Anyway, I purposely did not flame the car install shop because I want to give them a fair chance to make things right by replacing or repairing my speaker and hopefully what they do to one side, they will also do to the other side to prevent me from having mismatch equipment.
 

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Yikes! Looks like you bought yourself a boat load of issues for little benefit. I actually really like the HK system in my ML, and the NAV, though not the best in term of functionality, does a decent job of getting me around.

Did you not have the HK system or the NAV?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I purchased my ML without the NAV because at the time I thought I would save a few dollars and buy a portable NAV instead of upgrading to package #2 which was several thousand dollars more. Well i was content for about a year but I really started to miss the NAV and camera I had on the Acura MDX I traded for the ML. Besides, I grew tired of having to remove the portable NAV at night and the smudge circles it left on my windshield.
 

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Follow up, please

I purchased my ML without the NAV because at the time I thought I would save a few dollars and buy a portable NAV instead of upgrading to package #2 which was several thousand dollars more. Well i was content for about a year but I really started to miss the NAV and camera I had on the Acura MDX I traded for the ML. Besides, I grew tired of having to remove the portable NAV at night and the smudge circles it left on my windshield.
Please give us follow-ups. Are you content with the Avic now ? What are the shop's solutions ?:confused:
 
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