Mazda is finally answering our biggest gripe.
Mazda's infotainment system isn't the worst on the market, but it is far from our favorite. We've been saying for years that a simple update to include Android Auto and Apple CarPlay could fix our biggest gripes with the system. Mazda has stated that phone mirroring compatibility would be on its way for the 2018 model year, and a new system that was codeveloped with Toyota would replace the current UI. Thanks to Australian outlet Car Advice, we may have some indication of Mazda's plans for integrating Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
Speaking to the Australian outlet, the Japanese automaker confirmed plans to retrofit Android Auto and Apple CarPlay on vehicles equipped with MZD Connect. The company has yet to confirm the cost of the retrofit, but claims that the process will be seamless and won't change how the system performs. Mazda Australia marketing director, Alastair Doak said "Mazda Australia will offer, by year's end, an Apple CarPlay and Android Auto upgrade kit, which will work seamlessly with the MZD Connect system. It will be available for all customers with an MZD Connect system that first went on sale with Mazda 3 in early 2014."
Unfortunately, we aren't sure whether the same offer will be extended to Mazda owners outside of Australia. When asked if consumers influenced the company's decision to offer this retrofit, Doak said "It is something that is there and you need to move with the market. Are we seeing people walk out of dealerships because we don't have it? No." Though it may not stop people from buying a Mazda, we think that this addition will certainly create a stronger case for the brand and fix one of our only gripes with the Japanese automakers.