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