Like many other Lacrosse buyers, I was unable to find exactly what I wanted in a used Lacrosse. So I had to settle for a car without navigation. I did this knowing I could probably just install it after-the-fact. However I was surprised to see no information online about doing this. So I decided I would just do it myself. It’s disappointing to hear so many people say “it’s not possible”, “why not just buy the car with the options you want in the first place?”. Anything’s possible (except for finding exactly what you want in a used car)…it’s just a matter of cost. My goal was to prove that the install could be done at a cost that people would actually be willing to pay.
So without further ado, I present to you the installation of factory navigation (UYS) into a base radio (UWG) Lacrosse.
Parts you will need:
Radio (Silverbox) 22744758
Control panel 20843242
Radio Trim ????????
Radio (Silverbox) 22854093
Control panel 20843242
Radio Trim ????????
As of the writing of this how-to, part numbers for 2013 model year cars were not yet available in my channels.
NO MATTER WHICH YEAR NAVIGATION UNIT YOU CHOOSE, YOU WILL NEED ONE “TWINAX” CABLE. This is for the touch signal from the screen to the nav box.
All of these parts are interchangeable, and given the known issues with the 2010-11 nav systems, I would recommend going for the 2012 units. Depending on who you have unlock your unit, you should be able to have your unit’s software updated to the newest version at the time of unlocking. This SHOULD make the year of the unit irrelevant, as even a 2010 box would be running the same software as a 2012.
If you can get your lucky hands on a 2013 Intellilink silverbox, you can make use of the 2010-12 screen and controls. They are the same.
Prepare for the install:
Upon receiving your UYS silverbox and comparing it to your existing base radio, you may notice that it has JUST A FEW extra connectors that your base radio does not have.
Below is a comparison between the base radio and nav radio, and the identifiers GM uses for each connector:
Don’t panic, each one of these connectors is laid out in this how to. We’ll get to every last one of them.
First, the descriptions of what each one does:
X1 – Also known as the “GM44” this beast is the godfather of connectors. Within its 44-pins It houses the power, ground, system enable, GMLAN, speaker outputs, TeleCommunications Interface Module (TCIM), and Personal Data Interface Module (PDIM) link wires.
X2 – This 20-pin black beauty is the exclusive manager of the rear-seat entertainment system. This is connector is optional and is not covered further in this how-to.
X3 – This 20-pin afterthought is the clean-up man of the connector-crew. It handles screen data, control panel data, voice recognition, certain TCIM functions, and the Vehicle Speed Sensor (VSS) wire. Basically everything that GM couldn’t stuff into X1.
X4 – This is the class clown of the group, a quad-shielded coaxial cable known simply as “TWINAX” lands here. Why? Because GM, that’s why.
X7 – This is the super-custom one-off USB connector that you will find nowhere else on the planet. Why? See X4.
X8 – This is the analog radio connector, it links to a signal splitter mounted on the rear deck that handles AM and FM signals. It’s a union connector, which is why you rarely actually get any radio stations.
X9 – This is the digital radio connector, which handles the only radio that actually works in the Lacrosse, XM. Of course you have to pay for it, you think GM would give you working radio for free?
X10 – Last but not least, your best friend of the connector-crew, the little blue guy that always knows the way. This is the GPS antenna connector. This little guy is known as FARKA, and miraculously he is a universal type connector. This means - and you better sit down for this – you can actually use any FARKA based GPS antenna available. There are alot of options, I got mine on ebay for $19.
At this point you are probably wondering: OK how could I possibly “create” all these connectors when my car only has three of them? Read on…
One of the tricky parts is going to be sourcing the connector pieces. You need to obtain the X3, X4, X7, and X10 connectors. Fortunately X4 can be ordered through GM’s parts system (it’s the TWINAX cable), X7 comes as part of the USB/audio center console interface (also available through GM’s parts system), and X10 will come with your GPS sensor. That leaves us only with X3. Ideally, if you are going the salvage route to source your nav system, you can talk to the salvage company about getting that connector (I was able to do this for my install). All you need is the connector and a few inches of the existing wires so you can solder on new tails. Also, the forum may be able to help source this piece. At the time of this writing, I have not been able to find it…but check further down this thread, we will have new developments often no doubt, and we may be able to find the thing.
Now for the wiring:
Below are the pinout diagrams for each connector. These were created for those going from the base radio (UWG) to the navigation system (UYS). The first column is the pin number in the connector, the second column is the color of the wire that belongs in the spot, the third column is what that wire does, and the fourth column tells you what you need to do with it:
Grey – there should be no wire here.
Green – do nothing, the existing wire is correct.
Yellow – move/add wire and terminate other end at connector and pin noted. (EX - “To Controls X1-P1” means that the other end of the wire that lands here should land in the control panel connector (there’s only one in that case) at Pin 1).
The easiest part of the entire process is actually installing the unit. You will need to loosen the shifter trim by pulling straight up on the end closest to the cupholders. From there you can unclip the entire trim and just pull it down (maybe an inch) enough to clear the clips on the radio bezel. Remove the radio bezel by pulling straight up on the bottom left and right corners (where the vent open/close dials are). The entire piece will come out with the DIC screen (that’s for the UWG base radio…the Nav system touch screen is mounted to the radio cage and will NOT come out with the radio bezel…you have to be VERY careful with the radio bezel near the touchscreen because the upper METAL clips get REAL close to the screen when removing and installing the bezel – I actually scratched up my touchscreen while trying to get the bezel back in). You will only be able to pull the bezel out 3-4 inches before you have to unclip the control panel harness (very bottom center), and the DIC screen harness (back left side of the screen). Then you can remove the four hex screws that hold the silverbox in place, and unplug all the harnesses from the back of the box.
There are some missing pieces, and I posted it anyway. I just don't have the time right now to chase them all down, so I figured i'd put it up and forum members could give a hand. Here's is what I don't yet know...
- The part number for the TWINAX cable. I do know that it is available through GM, I just haven't been able to get the part number for it.
- The part numbers for the various radio trims. They are color specific and not listed in GM's parts database. They can be found on ebay pretty regularly.
- What to do about the USB issue. I figured that the UYS cars had a different USB/analog audio inteface similiar to what the GMT900 trucks have (it's a separate harness that has the console receptacle on one end, and plugs to go directly to the radio box on the other), but that's not the case. It's all integrated into the console harness. Furthermore, there is ONE console harness for all trims of the Lacrosse...so the UWG cars have the exact same harness as the UYS cars. This means that there is a junction somewhere, which probably consists of the cable with the super-exotic USB connector plugging into another cable that runs the rest of the way out to the PDIM and has the standard miniUSB plug on the end. If you can find this junction, you should be able to unplug it and abandon the cable that runs to the PDIM, and plug right into the UYS silverbox. Does anyone with a factory UYS car want to figure this one out? Trace your USB cable through the console to see where the junction is.
I'll keep working on this stuff, but I didn't want to keep everyone waiting any longer. More members thinking about it means faster progress.