These days, Bluetooth is a nearly ubiquitous feature of new cars. Yes, just about every new vehicle promises to pair with your smartphone. The obvious benefit is that you can use your smartphone while driving.
Of course, Bluetooth does more than facilitate hands-free talking. It allows drivers can gain access to features like navigation, phone contacts, and emails. Some cars even allow allow you to stream Twitter and Facebook. BMW and MINI even have apps that allow drivers to engage in a friendly competition against friends to see who can rack up to most “experience points”.
That said, some phones just don’t pair well with certain vehicles. Depending on the phone and car combination, your Bluetooth experience may not offer the robust set of features advertised in the specific car.
It can be difficult to determine if your phone will work with your car. Fortunately, most automakers have created guides that list each model’s ability to pair with specific smartphones. Our overview provides links to automakers Bluetooth compatibility guide. While you’re at it, check out our car reviews and best rides for new drivers. Feel free to voice your Bluetooth frustrations in the comment section below.
Bluetooth Compatibility Overview
Acura – Acura has Bluetooth technology in all every vehicle made after 2011. Its HandsFree Link is shown in their multi-informational display on the center counsel.
Audi – Every Audi made after 2006 offers a standard Bluetooth service.
Bentley – It should go without saying, Bluetooth comes standard in every Bentley vehicle made after 2005.
BMW – Every new BMW comes standard with Bluetooth. Premium iOS and Android devices offer some added benefits including email and calendar display on the center counsel. For 2013 vehicles or later, BMW also has BMW connect, an app that will display your calendar, relevant local information, and current Facebook and Twitter updates. The app is available for iOS and Android (iOS/Android).
Ford – Ford’s phone compatibility feature is called SYNC. It’s available in every new But it doesn’t come standard in every model. Sync will you operate your phone hands free. You can also pay more for MyFord Touch, the manufactures in-car communication system.
GM – Detroit’s auto conglomerate has been offering Bluetooth services since 2009 called, GM Total Connect. The service comes standard and syncs with most Bluetooth phones.
Honda – Hands free link offers standard Bluetooth service for every phone that offers Bluetooth sync. The automaker has been implementing Bluetooth tech since 2008, only recently has every Honda vehicle been converted to work with Bluetooth.
Hyundai – The South Korean manufacture has offers Bluetooth technology in the Genesis starting in 2009. Most other Hyundai’s were outfitted with Bluetooth in the following few years.
Land Rover – PTI or Personal Telephone Integration system is Land Rover’s hands-free service that comes standard on all new Land Rovers. Note: pairing your phone and Land Rover requires a PIN number that can be accessed by following the link. That code can be found in the owners manual.
Lexus – Lexus has always been a little behind the curve in terms of offering Bluetooth standard on its vehicles. In year’s past, Bluetooth was only available in vehicles with a navigation system. Heck, some 2008 models still came equipped with a tape deck. Now, all new Lexus models, however, come standard with Bluetooth.
Mazda – Bluetooth is available in the form of Mazda Connect. The service doesn’t come standard on every model but will pair with just about every phone that offers Bluetooth Service, but will allow hands-free driving, remember favorite locations, and provide maintenance reminders.
Mercedes-Benz – Luxury car makers are now having to be at the forefront of connectivity. Mercedes Benz does a good job of providing standard Bluetooth connection in every model (after 2009).
MINI – In addition to the hands-free phone capabilities, MINI offers MINIConnect, an app that allows users to gain points based on their driving skills (acceleration, braking, etc.) as well as access to Twitter and Facebook updates in the car. The app is available for iOS and Android.
Mitsubishi – The Handsfree Service doesn’t work well with older phone, but it does come standard in some baseline models including the Eclipse.
Nissan – Similar to other companies, Nissan offers baseline hands-free phone calling and phone book, in all current models.
Porsche – Despite the dated website from Porsche’s infotainment system circa 1995, the downloadable PDF will give you a full list of just about every phone that works with every Porsche. Like other Luxury models, premium phones sync with Porsche’s hands free system to stream office tasks including personal calendar and email inbox.
Scion – Scion offers baseline hands free calling and phonebook in all current models.
Subaru – The 2008 Impreza was the first model to offer Bluetooth services. Now it comes standard on every vehicle.
Toyota – Toyota has Entune, the free app-based service that allows users to listen to iHeartRadio, purchase movie tickets, and make dinner reservations all through the center counsel. The app is available for iOS and Android.
Volkswagen – The German engineered automaker didn’t start making Bluetooth compatible vehicles until 2010. Even so, it’s on board now, and every model offers a connected option.
Volvo – Every 2014 model and newer can pair with your phone.
If you’ve discovered that a specific phone doesn’t work with a specific car, please leave a comment!