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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

Not quite sure how useful this will be to some of you. In all honesty, it's more of a "nice to have" thing that is standard on the Touring models, but missing from the lower trim levels. I did not have this on my Limited, but there were a few times recently, when it would have been really nice to have (usually, when trying to fit into smaller parking spaces).

Basically, what I did was purchase a rear view camera and monitor setup from Amazon and installed it, but with the camera in the front of the car mounted near where the touring camera is. Total cost was about $50 and maybe an hour of time for wiring it all up.

This is the one that I got:
Auto-Vox M1



I mounted the monitor in the left front dashboard, just adjacent to the A pillar. In theory, if you could disassemble the drivers' door panel, you could also mount it right on top of the door, sitting anteriorly next to the non-opening trapezoidal window by the drivers side mirror (this would be my preferred location actually). It's just that then the wiring would need to go down into the door and preferably through the S-shaped rubber weather grommet... From experience working in the rear hatch grommet, this seemed like it could be more trouble than it was worth... The monitor is 4.3" diameter, so it's really quite small and unobtrusive.

A couple of notes about this setup. Note the thin connectors on this unit. From experience wiring up the fog lights through the hood latch release cable hole in the firewall, you probably won't be able to fit anything bigger than this sized connector through that location. Many other monitors like this come with traditional AV coaxial sized connectors. I also wired up the power to my accessory fog lights (i.e. so turn on my aftermarket fogs, and you also get the parking monitor). The images are flipped left to right (can't be adjusted to my knowledge). However, since I'm only using the unit for gauging how close I can get my car to an object without hitting it, I'm really only concerned with front to back distance. There is a switch on the unit to turn the gridlines off or on. I kept mine on.
The image has a little distortion / noise (was not present when testing outside of the vehicle and may be related to when the engine is on). But it's still perfectly usable. I don't get much fog in SoCal, so luckily I don't need to drive with my fogs on (often).

Anywho... thought this might be useful for any of you thinking of doing something similar.
If I had to do it again, I would try to research a little more for other possible less obtrusive cameras out there with similar connectors, but no issues with the left/right switch. I currently have this camera mounted onto the front grille, essentially sitting on top of the bottom chrome border molding. They have wireless monitors as well, but these seem to be quite a bit more expensive (arguably, this may produce better images on the screen, but from what I've seen, these cameras also appear to be a lot bulkier).

Am happy to take pics of my setup later and post up for you all to see if you would like (currently I'm at work today).

Also, if someone knows how to take apart the drivers side door panels, please post up the instructions! I wouldn't mind relocating the monitor to that tiny window.

Cheers,
-C
 

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That monitor might even fit in that little cubby hole shelf to the left of the steering wheel. I think it would look a little cleaner there and maybe less distracting if you do drive with your fog lights on, especially at night. Just a thought. I like the size of that monitor compared to the others that have been suggested.
 

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You can purchase inexpensive ($15) replacement cameras on AliExpress that have a non-reversed view. See this thread for more details as well as another way to add a front/rear camera.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Hudway looks nice (albeit a touch expensive).
Wouldn't mind going that route, except I already have the OEM Navi in the car...

I also tried multiple replacement cameras with the 4-pin plug and none of them seem to be direct plug and play... which makes me wonder if Auto-Vox is using a proprietary wiring scheme? Would probably have to have a spare unit or two to disassemble and test out.

-C
 

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I'm going to install the same setup in my wife's Ascent. Do you recall what size hole did you bore to mount the cam in the grille? Assume you used a hole saw?
thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I'm going to install the same setup in my wife's Ascent. Do you recall what size hole did you bore to mount the cam in the grille? Assume you used a hole saw?
thanks!
sorry no... I think I used the retaining ring asa rough hole size template and just went from there with the dremel tool. I also wrapped some heavy duty double size stick tape around the OD of the camera which kind of helped “fill in the gaps”, so to speak.
 
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