Jeep Mind Trick: There Is No Navigation System/Stereo In Your Car

It doesn’t matter that Steven is looking right at the sophisticated navigation system/stereo that came with his 2010 Jeep. It doesn’t matter that the technicians at the Jeep dealership can see the system with their very own eyes. It’s not there. Chrysler’s records, based on his VIN, say that he doesn’t have it, and they won’t give him the upgrade disc needed to make it sync with his iPhone. You can’t upgrade something that isn’t there.

Steven, clearly delusional, writes:

I purchased a brand new 2010 Jeep with a Navigation system/radio. The radio was supposed to work with the iPhone. I found a link on Jeep’s website that there is a software upgrade available to fix the issue. In order to receive the upgrade it requires the VIN number of the car. When I enter my VIN in, it says that I do not have this radio and therefore am not eligible for the DVD.

I brought my car into the dealership and they told me that even though they see I have this radio, they will not upgrade the software because in their system it says I have a different radio. I reached out to the Chyrsler help center and they told me that I have a different radio in their system so they are sorry but cannot help me. I called back numerous times and sent numerous emails to them with no response.

The fastest way to get your hands on this disc may be to visit Jeep (or iPhone) forums and ask to borrow or buy a copy of the upgrade DVD. If what you really want is to force Chrysler to acknowledge reality, though, maybe phoning up some executives will help.


Edit Your Comment

  1. TBGBoodler says:

    If Steven’s Jeep has a MyGig system, he can likely find the software update here on the Unofficial MyGig site:

    • philu says:

      This is right. If he’s got a my gig he wants version 2.402 which is downloadable. Just burn it to a DVD and stick it in the radio. Firmware updates do not require an activation code. Only map updates do since you have to buy them.

      It should be noted that while you’re grabbing the most up-to-date firmware, you should also download the grace notes database. This is the database that powers the album and song name data when you pop a CD in. It is also a free download.

      Also, I actually had an experience where my new 2009 Chrysler Aspen had map data from 2007. Apparently that’s the standard install on the mygig I got. So a major interstate that was extended near my house in 2008 was missing. Very inconvenient. I complained to Chrysler customer service. They said if I bought it from Navteq, they’d reimburse me after submitting a claim form of some sort. They came through. Just took a couple of calls and faxing them a form.

  2. Rainicorn with baby bats says:

    Pirate bay, hoooo!

  3. petepuma02 says:

    Chrysler may be right here (I’ll say ‘may’ again). There is nothing to stop someone at the dealership from swapping radios between cars and it actually happens fairly often. The radio may have been swapped with another car before Steven bought it.

    • pwm_av8r says:

      Even if the dealership DID swap the radio, Chrysler is still wrong. They are saying that he doesn’t have that navigation system / radio in his vehicle when he very clearly does. Is it supposed to be there stock? Possibly. Then again maybe not. But either way, it IS there in the new vehicle that he purchased. I see no reason why they can’t just give him the DVD. What harm does it do to simply send it?

      As a side note… I would think that any dealership should have a copy of this on0hand in case other customers come in needing the same upgrade. If it can be done with a simple DVD (similar to a firmware upgrade) then why doesn’t every dealership have one?

      • larrymac thinks testing should have occurred says:

        I don’t know anything about this Chrysler system, and frankly I don’t know much about the system that’s built into my car. I do know that the one in my car requires the DVD to be present at all times, as the disc contains the map data as well as the actual nav program.

        • Yorick says:

          cheez, they couldn’t have put it on an SD or other solid-state memory? What happens when the DVD gets scratched or you come on a rutted road?

    • Derigiberble says:

      Even if the dealer swapped it the nav system should be on the big window sheet listing all the options and such. My car has a couple of dealer installed extras and they are listed. Perhaps that would be enough to convince Chrysler that they did indeed sell him a car with the nav system.

      He really needs to get this straightened out with Chrysler because if that nav system malfunctions now they probably will deny a warranty replacement.

    • What‚Äôs your problem, Kazanski? says:

      Wrong. Dealers do not swap radios/nav systems on a regular basis. I’ve worked at a dealer for five years and it never happened, even once. Tires and wheels are a different story.

      • Rachacha says:

        I was looking to purchase a vehicle, and I did not like leather seats, unfortunately the car that I liked had leather seats. The dealer, to make the sale, was willing to pull the cloth seats out of a similar car (without all the features I wanted) and replace the leather seats with them. Swapping a radio seems like a much easier task than replacing 3 rows of seats. Ultimately I went with a different manufacturer, so I don’t know if they would have gone through with the switch or not.

        Not sure how the Chrysler Nav systems are, but on my vehicle with a factory Nav, there is a special satellite antenna that seems like it would be difficult to pull from one vehicle and install in another. My hunch is that someone at the factory installed the wrong audio system in the car.

      • DGC says:

        Right. It’s more likely that the wrong one was installed at the factory. A dealer might order one as a replacement part to install if a customer asked, but they would not switch between cars. I think it’s illegal to sell if items on the Monroney sticker aren’t there.

    • daemonaquila says:

      Doesn’t matter. He bought it with the equipment. It’s in there. They can see it. They need to fix the problem. The basic principle will always be: it doesn’t matter if someone at your store or your computer system messed something up – it’s still your responsibility.

  4. Cat says:

    Chrysler. Huh, huh…

  5. RookOmega says:

    You might not be able to use the update from someone else. On the nav disk for my car, it’s coded to the radio (vin) – so it is useless for anyone else.

  6. TheUncleBob says:

    Give up. Customer service at Chrysler is non-existent.

    NEVER gonna buy from them again. :(

    • Dave B. says:

      I’ve been driving Chrysler products (Dodge & Jeep) for 25 years and have had nothing but positive experiences with them.

      • Cat says:

        I’ve been driving Chrysler products for 25 years and had nothing but negative experiences with them.

        I find it hard to accept that I’ve just been unlucky with 6 cars. When this van dies, I’m done with them. I’m only driving it because I can’t afford to buy a new car.
        List of things wrong with 2000 minivan:

        2 windows stopped working
        rear window hinge came unglued
        rear view mirror came unglued
        windshield shattered itself while parked, as I watched.
        intermittent wipers, NFG. Replaced controller @ 30K, bad again @ 100k
        replaced water pump @ 50k
        Side mirrors electric adjustment won’t go down, both sides
        Replaced engine w/ used engine @ 70k (cheaper than fixing original)
        Rebuilt Transmission @ 95k


  7. deathbecomesme says:

    If he bought the jeep brand new then he should find the paper work/window sticker that lists all the extras. if it shows the navigation upgrade then take them to court for the price he paid for navigation but their system shows he doesn’t have. Get a refund, done.

    • deathbecomesme says:

      that* their system shows he doesn’t have.

      He can then use that money to buy an aftermarket GPS/Stereo unit

  8. Carlos Spicy Weiner says:

    A perfect example of awful Customer Service. Now Steve thinks Chrysler are a bunch of assholes becauce they’re being such sticklers for proceedure they’re missing the fact that they could turn an unhappy customer, who wouldn’t spread the bad word on websites like this, into a happy one with a simple, stupid piece of software….jeeze!

    • JoeDawson says:

      Agreed, They would guarantee his future business if they can do a SIMPLE thing.

    • corkdork says:

      You know, I think I’ve never seen such a concise description of why empowering CS people to do their jobs is important. Impotent CS people mean disgruntled customers.

      You win one Internets.

  9. Coles_Law says:

    It’s alsp possible that the radio he has is different, and has a different problem preventing it from syncing with the iPhone that this DVD won’t fix. It wouldn’t surprise me at all to learn a Chrysler product had multiple problems with electrical components.

    • Hi_Hello says:

      that’s what I”m thinking. He might have ALMOST the same radio but model/version instead of which can be fixed with the software update. The software update with brick version though.

    • daemonaquila says:

      Don’t remind me. My love of Wranglers caused me to buy another, years after trading in my Chrysler Electric Nightmare Jeep for something that didn’t seem to have small explosive charges strapped to every major component. This one is nearing the 100k mark, and so far it has been a champ (knocking on wood). The old one, though… the dash electronics were hosed from the moment it left the showroom floor. It was already on recall, but of course the dealer didn’t fix it or even mention that little fact before selling it. A year later, the same problems were happening with the the “repaired” wiring harness. There had been a second recall for the *fix*, but again I never got any notification. I found out accidentally and brought the jeep in for repair under the recall, but by that point I had “too many miles” on the jeep for the recall to apply. Pray tell, how does milage affect a faulty wiring harness in the dash?

  10. McRib wants to know if you've been saved by the Holy Clown says:

    Then he clearly needs to get Chrysler to swap the Jeep around his stereo. Since the problem is the VIN, he is clearly entitled to a Jeep Car(TM) accessory to his radio.

    • McRib wants to know if you've been saved by the Holy Clown says:

      gah. Last sentence should read:

      Since the problem is the VIN, he is clearly entitled to a Jeep Car(TM) accessory upgrade to his radio.

    • Excuse My Ambition Deficit Disorder says:

      How is it clearly a problem with the VIN? You know, it is possible to buy a vehicle without options such as a stereo. I see both sides here, but can totally understand the dealerships point of view. For all they know, he could have bought the vehicle with out this option and bought it off eBay once the dealership touches it…it makes them liable for any damages and becomes their problem. So, I don’t blame them for looking out for their best interest. It’s time the OP gets on Google and finds a way to upgrade it on his own as it’s not worth the energy to fight this battle.

  11. Carlos Spicy Weiner says:

    I ran into a lesser problem at Costco when I went to put new tires on our 4Runner. To meet safety standards, Costco won’t install tires on a vehicle of a size larger than listed on the kick plate sticker (on lower driver’s side doorjam), eventhough the vehicle specs says it will accomodate up to a certain size. Our sticker says it came with the next size down from what the New Vehicle window sticker from the dealer said, because the factory or dealer upgraded the tires before the vehicle was purchased, but after it was manufactured. Costco wouldn’t budge, so I had to buy the set of tires from someone else for $100 more :-(.

    • Dr. Ned - This underwear is Sofa King Comfortable! says:

      The thing is, thanks to America’s New Past-time: Litigation, a lot of those ‘will not install’ policies are there to prevent lawsuits which will eventually come if they push the boundaries on what CS will do for a customer. It is sad that providing good service can be used as a liability.

      • Greg Ohio says:

        I work for a tire distributor: Costco was doing you a favor. One that could save your life. Toyota’s knowledge of what safely fits their vehicles is definitive. The dealership’s isn’t.

        • AEN says:

          You’re saying that Costco is doing him a favor by downgrading his tires from the upgraded ones that came on his vehicle?

        • Carlos Spicy Weiner says:

          Uh, the tire size they refused to install was within the Factory Specs, and I’m sure NTSB approved, as well as being the size the dealer said my VIN # and window sticker showed CAME ON THE VEHICLE. The weren’t added “after market”

    • MrEvil says:

      No discount tire near you? I’ve priced Costco in Austin before and they were higher than Discount.

    • baristabrawl says:

      When I was in college I went to buy 2 tires one month and 2 the next. I wanted the first set of tires on the front of my Dodge Neon and the next month I was going to put the next 2 on the back. They won’t do that because of some fishtail possibility. On a Neon. Front wheel drive. So…I would need my “dig” on the back tires? Consequently I went to Tire Barn and the same tire was so cheap that I bought all 4 and made it a nonissue. I have stopped buying things for my car at CostCo.

  12. MikeM_inMD says:

    Car companies *have* changed. It used to be they would gladly sell you things you didn’t need.

  13. ecvogel says:

    Maybe it is to stop theft? How do they know he didn’t buy it off the black market? I am not saying this person did, but might be the reason. Then again, someone did get their radio stolen and his dealer installed the same one as these black market people are slick.

  14. Apeweek says:

    Sue Chrysler or the dealer in small claims court for failure to provide support for the product you bought from them. Use your settlement to get a decent GPS.

  15. parabellum2000 says:

    I encountered a similar problem with Hyundai. My girl friend’s Tiburon had paint flaking off the spoiler. It should have been covered under warranty but the dealer said that the spoiler was not installed on the car because it wasn’t listed when he pulled up the VIN. It was of course the OEM spoiler that I’ve seen on every Tiburon. I asked him how many 06 Tiburons were shipped without spoilers he said “this one wasn’t”.

    • HomerSimpson says:

      So what happens if the dealer “claims” a particular car didn’t come with an engine according to their records? Refuse to service it?

    • AEN says:

      I once ordered a new Mustang with a spoiler option. The option was listed on the window sticker and I was charged for one when the vehicle arrived. The car had no spoiler. The dealer claimed the spoiler was “discontinued”. Curiously, they did have a spoiler in stock – which they wouldn’t give me because my dispute was with “Ford Sales” and not “Ford Parts”.

  16. prisoner_zero says:

    The Harman Becker stereos in recent Chrysler products can receive firmware updates via DVD, but not USB? Weird, right? And why don’t the dealers have access to the disc images so they can burn a copy of the DVD as needed?

    Welcome to the brave new world of auto mechanics, where the size of the hard drive in your car is as relevant as the cubic inches under the hood.

  17. DonnieZ says:

    Just because the radio looks identical to those that may qualify for the update doesn’t necessarily mean that yours does.

    The navi units aren’t built by Chrysler themselves, they are built by someone for Chrysler. Sometimes there are running internal hardware changes, and only certain upgrades apply to certain hardware revisions.

    I ran into this with my VW navigation system. They have used the RNS-510 navigation units since the 2008 model year in some cars. For the most part the units all look identical, save for the very early models having a “Mute” button in place of the “Phone” button. Even though they look all alike and for the most part are functionally identical, there’s been at least 4 different hardware revisions, and some firmware updates do not apply to the older revisions. The only way to know is to search by the part number of the radio.

    Some manufacturers do not change the part number either with a running hardware change, so that’s why they go by production ID / VIN. Car manufacturers pretty much keep track of when every part that goes into a car was manufacturered so in case of a safety recall, they know exactly which cars to recall – not too many to cost the company any extra, and not too few to be open to lawsuits.

    Will the upgrade work if you can get your hands on it? Sometimes they do and sometimes they don’t. I went ahead and upgraded the firmware on my VW’s navi unit, but the specific revision I had wasn’t on the list of approved navi units. It works 99% of the time, but I get some random reboots while listening to MP3s. These types of issues may be why it’s not showing up as eligible for your vehicle.

    • daemonaquila says:

      Though I’m not buying the “we can’t help it” aspect of what you’re saying, you’ve made a perfect argument for why people should not buy that junk from the dealer.

  18. maxhobbs says:

    What I don’t get is, this disc costs them practically nothing. Why wouldn’t they just send it out to anyone that can show they own a new Jeep?

    You know, sort of like in the day when AOL sent everyone on the planet a start up disc?

    • MrEvil says:

      The physical disc costs next to nothing. But what DOES cost money is the software license on the disc which can be hundreds of dollars (sometimes thousands).

  19. central_ny_dude says:

    Its entirely possible, that someone else was looking at buying the Jeep, but with a non nav radio. To make the sale, the dealer agreed to switch it out, then the buyer backs out. They used to call it “dealer upgrade”, as opposed to factory installed. Now, most radios are coded to the vin of the vehicle to reduce theft. It takes a Tech2 scanner to reprogram that vin to make the component work. which is beyond the financial reach of the DIY mechanic. Chances are, the dealer has a trail of this somewhere. Either they swapped the radio, or got it from someone who did. If the radio is not coded to a new vin to swap it, then the dealer may still be able to read the correct vin from the donor vehicle on this radio with a Tech2, and get you the vin you need for the software. It sounds like a dealer swap-out, so I would start with them. If they dig around, they might find the trail. If nothing else, they should be able to verify your ownership of the vehicle with the nav radio when you go to the execs for help.

  20. Mike says:

    Sounds like dealer fraud. Tell them to fix it or you will file a fraud complaint, then follow through.

  21. central_ny_dude says:

    Okay, something else is fishy here. He bought a “brand new” 2010 Jeep? Did this just happen, or is it an old story? Or is he just now getting around to figuring out that it doesn’t work right? If this just happened, and he just bought a “brand new” 2010 Jeep, on a dealer lot… that’s a big red flag. In that case, it may be that they could have swapping in the nav unit to a 2 year old Jeep still sitting on their lot to try and sell it. Its not hard for a dealer to do, but it is for the average DIY mechanic. If this just happened, and the OP just bought a 2 (model) year old car “new”, I would take it to some other dealer that has no affiliation with your current one, and have them check it out, because yeah, that situation reeks of fraud. Its kinda like a car shipping with 16″ steel wheels, then the dealer goes and swaps on a set of premium 18″ alloys in an attempt to sell a car that isn’t going anywhere. You get into an accident, and your vin says the replacement wheel is a 16″ steel one, and not the upgraded ones you bought it with, and the insurance will only pay for the cheap steel rims. Ask me how I know about that scenario. :-/

    • madderhatter says:

      Could be that he just now got an iPhone and didn’t know (for how ever long he’s had the Jeep) that the system wouldn’t work with one ?

  22. maynurd says:

    Since they are so positive that you don’t have the radio in your jeep, demand a refund of the cost of the radio as shown on your purchase invoice.

  23. Rhinoguy says:

    What the Chrysler people are saying is that once an error is in their computers there is no one on Earth with ability to correct the error. There must be someone at Chrysler who knows better. Executives can usually find them.

  24. Saltillopunk says:

    As mentioned before is that the dealer may have swapped out the original radio for this one to make a sale. Perhaps a customer liked a vehicle that had it, but didn’t want it and didn’t want to pay for it. Despite arguments to the contrary by other users, this does happen. A friend traded in a 2009 Challenger for a 2010 model. He wanted the Nav unit but the 2010 didn’t have it so they pulled one out of a 2009 on the lot and installed it. Long story short, there were issues because of a change in the communication method between models. Another example was when I was window shopping for a Wrangler and asked what happened to the hard panels listed on the sticker. The customer changed them out to another Wrangler because a customer wanted that option. I hope that the OP is fortunate enough to have something in the paperwork which was over looked which shows the dealer had swapped the Nav radio out.