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GROM Audio Bluetooth/USB Car Kit

12-18-2018 | By Smit Patel | Issue 100

Based in Silicon Valley, GROM Audio is a company that specializes in high quality, in-car audio integration systems. As one of the leading industry experts, GROM takes special pride in their aftermarket solutions to satisfy customers from all over the world. Their kits include products which support smartphones, tablets, iPods/iPhones, MP3, and USB storage devices which make use of the factory car stereo.

The product in this review will be the GROM USB iPhone / iPOD / Android Car Kit Bluetooth capable (Bluetooth dongle sold separately). This kit enables users to play music from a mobile device source, and control from the car stereo or steering wheel. This allows a non-Bluetooth capable car to become Bluetooth ready without unnecessary wires, low-quality FM transmitters, and cassette to jack adapters.


The GROM Audio comes in an unassuming white box which houses the car stereo adapter in a metal enclosure, a vehicle specific harness, automotive grade USB type A male / type A female adapter, and if purchased separately, a GROM Bluetooth dongle for hands-free calling and wireless playback (GROM-BTD).

GROM offers a 30 day money back guarantee as well as a one year replacement warranty.

GROM Audio Bluetooth/USB Car Kit


GROM Audio have allowed easy installation via a plug and play device. For further tutorials and videos, please check out their website.

The vehicle specific harness attaches to the back of the factory external CD changer (a spare port) and essentially fools the OEM factory stereo into playing from the car adapter.

This enables the car adapter to be fit inside the back of the car (after carefully removing the car's factory stereo). The wires of the mic can be fitted beneath the roof pillar of the car, and hidden alongside the skirting board.

Once the harness is connected and the wire of the mic carefully installed, a sturdy location for the car adapter should be utilized while the rest of the factory stereo is placed back. The glovebox of the car can be used to house the wires from the adapter.

Sound quality

The GROM Audio Kit offers outstanding quality music playback, allowing the original factory stereo to play Bluetooth music from a smartphone device. Obviously, the GROM kit will only be as good as the weakest link of the car audio chain, but with a solid connection to the back of the factory stereo's CD changer, the device offers significantly better sound than an FM transmitter.

Users who first start the car have the option to connect to 'GROM CAR' as part of their Bluetooth devices, and be ready to go. Thereafter, users can control playback via the stereo itself, or if applicable, using the steering wheel controls.

I tested the kit via Spotify on a Samsung Galaxy S8 device which yielded fantastic results. Compared with a previously bought FM transmitter, there was no interference, smooth gapless playback, and clarity was excellent. Rather like CD quality, sub-bass rumble was taut and well-defined, the midrange vocals were articulate, and high frequencies were extensive. The ability to upheave a vintage Lexus into the modern era of Bluetooth-ready tech was something of a bonus.

Users are not only restricted to Spotify but can make use of the surround sound of their car to play anything out of a modern smartphone device, with Bluetooth capability whether it would be movies from an iPad, or YouTube video sound from a smartphone device.  

There is also the option for USB playback which does not handle gapless playback as well as Bluetooth, but adds necessary convenience where the dongle has not been purchased. Also, users can charge their phone from the GROM AUDIO USB port.

Hands-free calling offers great quality, and incoming calls mute music playback, a nice addition to this all-in-one solution.


Want to turn an older model car into something capable of playing music? Look no further, as GROM AUDIO have tactfully brought USB/Bluetooth car adapters to the forefront with their simple focus on car audio integration. At $159 (+$49 for the Bluetooth dongle), the kit represents a sizeable but worthy investment to turn long car journeys into enjoyable ones. The impressive sound quality and hands-free phone calling integration also works wonders and is another of many reasons to try this simple yet useful product.


Available for numerous cars, check compatibility for your car on Grom Audio

Format support: wav, flac, mp3, wma, ogg, aac, m4a

Capacity: up to 500GB and 10,000 tracks depending on the car radio

GROM Audio Bluetooth/USB Car Kit

Retail: $159

GROM Audio