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Fifty150

Aftermarket Bluetooth

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I might be the only person on this forum who bought a stripped down XL.  I simply did not have the hundreds of dollars for the premium Ford Sync system.  Nor did I have the extra thousands of dollars for an XLT or Titanium model.  So I just have to live in the commercial/fleet world while others have personal vehicles with bells & whistles.  

 

My car came with only an AM/FM radio.  That little display screen above the head unit, tucked into the dash, does not exist on my car.  It's just a plastic shelf which I put my cheap sunglasses in.  If you think that is funny, my F-150 came without A/C, power windows, power door locks, and only has an AM radio.  Yeah, laugh at me having to turn the window crank to roll up the windows, and locking the door by pressing down on the little whatchamacallit.  

 

The AM/FM is just that.  No Bluetooth.  I found a $12.98 solution on Amazon.com.  No frills.  It is clipped onto the overhead shelf, right above my head.  I can hear everything just fine.  The person on the other end of the call is able to hear me.  Unit "speaks" Mandarin Chinese, Spanish, & English.  Instructions are in Chinese & English.  Pairing with my cell phone was effortless.  It's not pretty.  But it works.  I hope this helps other poor people like me who could not afford the extra add-ons that inflate the price of the vehicle.  Not being cheap.  I just really don't have the money.  That is why there are base models.  For people like me without the financial resources.  

 

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Hey…whatever works. Now get yourself an Oontz Angle portable Bluetooth speaker, throw it on the dash, and stream yourself some music over your phone. The Sync system is pretty limited and doesn't recognize my voice commands half the time. It doesn't recognize ANY voice commands with even the slightest background noise. Even Siri puts it to shame. 

After a few weeks with mine I could kill the Sync system and be very happy with a nice aftermarket touch screen head unit. 

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I usually use a Bluetooth over-the-head headset with a noise cancelling boom mic.  But this unit, with it's placement, seems to work fairly well.  And I don't look like a pilot in the cockpit.

 

I've always felt that dealer & factory installed stereo systems were a ripoff.  The most useful thing on an upgraded head unit, for me, would be the navigation system.  But I've already got a GPS.  And portable GPS units are simply easier to get updates with.  You can't really take the in-dash GPS with you to use for walking. And these days, GPS is available on almost every phone and tablet.  I have been using an 8" tablet, Acer Iconia, for navigation.  My tablet also plays music, and I can plug into the AM/FM via the 3.5 mm port.  It is also nice to have the tablet mounted in the car, so that I can read books, go online to surf the web & check my e-mail, or view my operating parameters via a Bluetooth OBD II reader.  It works just as well as the old ScanGauge II.  

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That's the policy of your local dealer or distributor. Our base radio (the one with a tiny dot matrix LED screen) has USB/MP3/Bluetooth as standard, no extra cost.

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We don't get diesel engines either.  

 

I would have loved one of those little 1/4 ton Rangers with a diesel engine.  

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The List of options is done at the corporate level here , The Dealer is very limited in what they control.  The emissions are limiting the Diesel's here due to the low numbers.  If the gas stays cheap  the other fuel types are hard pressed to make a number's gain.  The Propane rig that mrtn has would be most interesting if the fuel were available at the cost advantage he has.

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At work, our Econoline vans use Flex Fuel.  We have E85 in my area.  But none of the local dealers had a Flex Fuel model on the lot.  As a matter of fact, no EcoBoost engines on the lots either.  Every dealer in my local area only had 2.5 L gasoline engines.  I wonder if the Flex Fuel models are only sold for fleet purchases.

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To the OP:

 

You're not the only one who started out with a base model XT cargo van. I, too, had to deal with the challenge of hands-free calling. In addition, I wanted to play mp3 files from a USB Flash Drive as well as from my iPhone. The solution was this Bluetooth device that streams phone calls, as well as music, to my FM radio:

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B073D294M5/

 

At the same time, the device can be charging my cell phone. That allows me to initiate calls with "Hey, Siri" and use the phone for extended GPS navigation. All in all, this device, paired with my cell phone, provides a lot of very useful features for less money than an audio, navigation, and Sync upgrade.

 

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MLB    1
On 9/15/2016 at 11:54 PM, Fifty150 said:

At work, our Econoline vans use Flex Fuel.  We have E85 in my area.  But none of the local dealers had a Flex Fuel model on the lot.  As a matter of fact, no EcoBoost engines on the lots either.  Every dealer in my local area only had 2.5 L gasoline engines.  I wonder if the Flex Fuel models are only sold for fleet purchases.

 

 My 2.5 is flex fuel.  E85 loses more mpg than it saves equivalent $.  Great for turbo's and hotly modified cars. 

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