Gear: Snag A Vintage Becker or Blaupunkt If Your Radio & Dash Clash

Snag A Vintage Becker or Blaupunkt If Your Radio & Dash Clash

By Petrolicious Productions
May 20, 2013

One of the best things about vintage cars is their interiors–well lit, airy greenhouses full of delightfully tactile materials like metal, wood, wool, leather, and chrome. An atmosphere enhanced by the smell of softly patinated upholstery and decades of oil, fuel, and fragrant hide care products. Softly-lit gauges, their etched numbers and readings glowing warmly behind bezeled glass.

A real bummer, then, to have that wonderful, fuzzy, old-timey feeling interrupted by a thick slab of artless plastic festooned with dozens of tiny buttons and distracting, flashing LEDs—the modern head unit. Sadly, it’s a reality in many otherwise lovingly-preserved old cabins, their fitment necessitated by a dead factory unit or the convenience of auxiliary inputs.

Fortunately, there’s now an alternative, with the original Becker and Blaupunkt radios fitted as OEM to many older European classics widely available freshly refurbished on eBay and through other sources, with many sellers offering optional wired-in MP3 compatibility via a small jack that can be easily and inconspicuously concealed out of sight. They’re not inexpensive, but if you’re after a pitch-perfect, period aesthetic, the details are everything.

Click here to see more Blaupunkt radios.

Click here to see more Becker radios.

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Giuseppe Maranghi
Giuseppe Maranghi(@gimar)
6 years ago

Hi, to Chris Macha: FM 104/105 scale was for Germany, not sure about the rest of Europe, some asian countries had 78/104 MHz, in Italy average FM scale is 88 – 108 MHz, not less than 88 because in lower close frequencies we have the Police Road Patrol Radio (!).
To find a good Sixties/Seventies radio is not a problem, remember that Becker and Blaupunkt had exceptional tuning qualities, sadly not the same about tape player. Grundig radios also were very nice, but their tuning coils are extremely delicate and very hard to find.
Consider that Stereo 8 cassette was far more common in USA than Europe, where the Stereo 7, or compact cassette, had larger diffusion: in both cases a lot of good Philips, Autovox and, above all, Voxson radio+tape await for new employment.
And don’t forget those “Made in Japan”, many little nice looking jewels.


Inigo Loy Colmenar
Inigo Loy Colmenar(@fb_758048858)
8 years ago

I collect various generations of Blaupunkt Berlin and its accesories plus Canton Pullman speakers because I think those two are the period correct brands for 80s euro cars.

8 years ago

> with many sellers offering optional wired-in MP3 compatibility via a small jack that can be easily and inconspicuously concealed out of sight
The important point here being such input capabilities are [i]native [/i]to many Becker & Blaupunkt radio of the period – simply check rear panel for DIN socket. Which makes for even easier installation… The radios can be purchased independently, and the DIN to MP3 input cable / adapters equally easy to source for ten dollars or so, or self-made if so inclined… The Benz fascia versions being particularly attractive! Neko.

Chris Macha
Chris Macha(@hbchris)
8 years ago

But where can the Blaupunkts be repaired? I have several but FM does not work. And finding US Frankfurts with 108 FM scale and Stereo is much harder. Any advice? Thank you.

4 years ago
Reply to  Chris Macha

In Europe would recommend

Gianni Burrows
Gianni Burrows(@giannib)
8 years ago

I used to really like the look of a vintage unit in a vintage car vs. the modern digital stuff, but I find I kind of lean towards no radio and an uncut dash these days. I think the 105/115 Alfa GTV dash looks especially good with uncut veneer and unhacked door cards/parcel shelf.

Dan Woodward
Dan Woodward(@woody)
8 years ago

Period car audio really makes an interior. From vintage Blaupunkt and Becker to retro Alpine kit, I love it all.

Sadly my CX has been hacked about to fit larger speakers etc, so I decided to go the other way and modernise it with a custom iphone mount which is great for music/navigation/charging. Just want to find a nicer looking head`unit with full ipod control/30 pin connector now.

Alan Franklin
Alan Franklin(@fb_708277174)
8 years ago
Reply to  Dan Woodward

Amazing car, Dan. Thanks for sharing.