How to Replace a Car Stereo in a 1999 VW Passat

Written by jule pamplin
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How to Replace a Car Stereo in a 1999 VW Passat
(Thomas Northcut/Photodisc/Getty Images)

The Volkswagen Passat shares much of its interior features with other VW models and the Audi A4. All of the 1999 models are equipped with a standard stereo system including a cassette player with options including a single-disc CD player. Serious car stereo enthusiasts often replace the stock stereo for a more capable and powerful aftermarket stereo head unit. You can trust the replacement to a professional car audio technician or you can swap the factory stereo for a new unit yourself.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Wrench, 10mm
  • Trim panel removal tool
  • Volkswagen stereo extraction tools
  • Wiring harness adaptor
  • Aftermarket stereo installation kit (with installation collar)

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  1. 1

    Open the Passat's bonnet and disconnect the negative battery cable from the negative battery post. Use a 10mm wrench to loosen the cable's clamp before removing it from the battery terminal. Move to the inside of the Volkswagen.

  2. 2

    Remove the trim panel that surrounds the stereo assembly with a trim panel removal tool.

  3. 3

    Slide the Volkswagen stereo extraction tools into the slots at the bottom corners of the factory stereo. Push the tools together while pulling the stereo from the stereo dock of the Passat.

  4. 4

    Unplug the stereo wiring from the rear panel of the stock radio. Remove the antenna cable lead from the outlet on the back of the stereo.

  5. 5

    Slide the installation collar included with the new stereo into the vacant stereo dock. Push the collar into the dock until it locks into place within the dock.

  6. 6

    Plug the stereo wiring connectors into the wiring harness adaptor leads. The wiring harness will be labelled to illustrate where the appropriate connections are to be made.

  7. 7

    Plug the antenna cable into the input labelled FM antenna on the back of the aftermarket stereo.

  8. 8

    Slide the new stereo into the installation collar until it locks into place.

  9. 9

    Replace the trim panel that covers the Volkswagen stereo dock. Push firmly around the perimeter of the trim panel to snap it back into place on the dashboard. Return to the Passat's battery.

  10. 10

    Replace the negative battery cable clamp around the negative battery terminal post. Tighten the clamp with the wrench and close the vehicle's bonnet.

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