Toyota Tacoma Head Unit and Screen Upgrade with Apple/Android Carplay

Toyota Tacoma Head Unit and Screen Upgrade with Apple/Android Carplay - Tacomavibes

Let’s cut right to the chase, the 3rd Gen Tacoma’s stock head unit absolutely sucks. Sure, Toyota Entune and the Bluetooth compatibility are solid but the overall size and the lack of Apple/Android is a major miss. When I first bought my 2019 Toyota Tacoma I was severely disappointed by the lack of Apple Carplay in the Tacoma. Luckily, I found a solution to this and was able to rectify the problem. 

With that said, there is always room for improvement especially when it comes to building your dream rig. Finding the right Tacoma head unit upgrade has become a lot easier now that many manufacturers have become privy to the lack of creature comforts in this iconic platform.


There’s a few reasons why one would want to upgrade the Tacoma head unit and they usually fall into the following:

  1. Screen Size Upgrade
  2. Audio improvement
  3. Aesthetic
  4. Android/ Apple Carplay

Many Tacoma owners want to maintain their OEM steering wheel and backup camera functionality when swapping out their stock Tacoma head unit as well. Thankfully, most 3rd gen Tacoma head unit upgrades have the ability to maintain stock functionality in the pursuit of the aforementioned goals.

3rd Gen Tacoma Screen Upgrade


The biggest issue with the lack of Tacoma Apple Carplay is the inability to toss an address into your GPS and just drive. Upgrading the Tacoma’s screen (along with the Carplay compatibility) is an absolute game changer for the weekend warrior and vagabonds on the road. While I originally found a solution to the Apple Carplay in the Tacoma it had some minor back-draws that left me wanting. Thankfully, I found a better solution that I’m presently in love with. 

The Best 2019 Tacoma Head Unit Upgrade


There’s plenty of options available on the market for 3rd Gen Tacoma head unit upgrades, but I choose to move forward with the Dasaita Head Unit for the Tacoma. 

The Tacoma receives a massive screen upgrade, retains steering wheel control, is backup camera compatible, and all the cords/cables are included along with simple installation instructions. The screen quality is dramatically improved along with the overall sound quality due to the amplifier and customizable sound settings. When I first installed the Dasaita head unit for the Tacoma, I immediately noticed a difference in sound quality as well as volume with my stock JBL speakers. 


For context, I always drive my Tacoma with all the windows down and music blaring (yeah, I’m that dude) and I wouldn’t be able to hear the music past 65 mph. These days that’s no longer an issue which is perhaps my favorite aspect of this Tacoma head unit upgrade. The Dasaita head unit is actually a factory amplifier in this sense.

Mind Blowing Tacoma Screen Upgrade


Switching from the stock screen to the Dasaita screen was the best Tacoma Screen upgrade I could have ever imagined. Not only is the screen massive, the functionality and clarity is second to none. The QLED display is absolutely stunning and offers a 170 degree ultra wide viewing angle which mitigates screen glare or fuzziness. Not only that, but the fit is impeccable. I will say, however, as someone who despises chrome you will need to remove the chrome air vents and spray them matte black (I cover this in my YouTube video). Unfortunately, my Meso custom blackout kit was not compatible with the air vent rings due to the decrease in size (because of the increase in screen size).


With this head unit upgrade for the Tacoma you’re able to customize your driving experience to your specifications. Whether it’s day and night driving modes, split screen, navigation, or even the way you link your phone - this head unit is unbelievably impressive.

Maintaining OEM Functionality with a Tacoma Head Unit Upgrade


There’s something to be said about maintaining OEM functionality even when you upgrade the head unit in your Tacoma so let’s dive into what features are maintained, changed, or lost after installing the Dasaita head unit.

The backup camera is maintained and is actually improved upon due to the screen size but the one backdraw I found is if you’re rocking out to your favorite song and put your Tacoma into reverse, it pauses the music. Not a big deal, but I found this to be fairly lame. 


Steering wheel controls and functionality remain the same with the ability to further customize them as you'd like. 

The best part, no additional cables or cords are required to maintain the OEM functionality. Dasaita has you completely covered here, which for me was big because I do not enjoy wiring.  

Tacoma Apple Carplay Head Unit Upgrade


Having Android and Apple Carplay compatibility in your Tacoma is a creature comfort I’ll always recommend. The Dasaita head unit flawlessly syncs with your phone and displays whatever applications you use. I commonly use Google Maps, Spotify, onXoffroad, Gaia GPS and the Tacoma head unit upgrade by Dasaita handles them all beautifully. 


In past Apple Carplay iterations that I had tested, there was some glitching when playing music. So far, the Dasaita head unit rarely has any “glitchyness” while playing music but the times that it has was due to my cellular service and less about the head unit. Overall, the connectivity and user friendliness is exceptional.

Where to purchase the Dasaita 3rd Gen Tacoma Head Unit


If you’re so inclined, you can purchase the Dasaita Head unit for the 3rd Gen Toyota Tacoma on the Dasaita website or on Amazon. Below are the links that will lead you straight to their product pages along with their current price:

Tacoma Dasaita Head Unit: Amazon, $539 USD (6 + 64G)

Tacoma Dasaita Head Unit: Dasaita, $588 USD (8 + 256G)

Closing thoughts the 2019 Tacoma Head Unit


I love my 2019 Tacoma TRD offroad and the build has come a long way with many miles to go. While I plan to mostly upgrade the exterior, my Tacoma is still a daily driver. I frequent the grocery store slightly less than I do campgrounds and am often roadtripping to wherever the road calls. Upgrading my head unit with a bigger screen and Apple Carplay was worth every penny.

Whether you choose Dasaita or other options, I highly recommend investing in this creature comfort especially if you hit the trails in your Tacoma. Having a massive screen when hitting a trail for onXOffroad is so satisfying. Then being able to seamlessly switch to Google Maps once off trail to return home - priceless… well not priceless but worth it!

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