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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So, one of the very first things I tend to do with my cars, is rip out the stock sound system, in place of a better one. This ones been keeping me awake at night since I ordered the vehicle in November, partly due to the costs, partly due to the fact not many others have done it and as I've found now "the time is here", the actual kit you need use, is impossible to find due to chip shortages, anyway, I've finally paid for the missing piece of the puzzle, by having to import the A2B module direct from Australia, so this has spurred me on to make a start, knowing I have everything (at least on order).

Now, my Kuga came with a "premium" B&O 10 speaker system. Everyones fully aware that all of these collaborations do not result in "premium" hardware, but, someone from a semi respectable audio brand has sat in the cabin, and fiddle with some knobs, to make it sound slightly better, to the point they're happy to stick their name to it. And, in fairness. For a stock setup, its actually not too bad. The centre speaker is useless/garbage, and the roll offs in the highs and lows is harsh. I think if they'd have given me some time alignment functionality, on the basis my mileage is massively reduced these days, I would have possibly live and let live, and been a happy chappy.

But, I'd spent a pretty penny on kit, even before I'd received the car, so I was somewhat committed, and I do love to tinker. (#ipadminimoto | Vauxhall Insignia | Hyundai IX35).

Anyway, here's my "build" plan/thread. I'll try and capture any How To type material for the How To section too...

Plan
Replace all speakers with aftermarket alternatives, improve the subwoofer whilst keeping the car looking "original" and retaining the factory headunit, along with factory sounds/chimes & all functionality without butchering the vehicle (it's only 3 weeks old o_O)!

As the tweeters and central speaker are powered from the headunit (Sync 3 APIM), my plan is to disconnect the centre speaker, for which I'll need to use the mObridge to re-align the chimes/sounds (I think). I'll then need to run new tweeter wiring to the front tweeters.

I intend to run Active Speakers up front, so both tweeter and woofer direct from the amp. The rear, will be passive, with the crossover fed from the stock wiring and then split out accordingly.

  • Hookup power and ground from the 12v battery in the rear. (PHEV bonus! The 12v is in the boot already!)
  • Replace stock B&O Amp with mObridge DA-G2 A2B Standard pre-amp. (Located above the rear right wheel arch, next to the sub, under the shroud).
  • Run RCA's from mObridge to Helix DSP/Amp.
  • Feed Helix amplified sound back down the OEM wiring. (May need an additional harness knocking up depending on what the mObridge comes with. I think I've identified they're Molex STAC64 modules so I can knock something up - I've ordered a few of these on the off chance as they're cheap enough -- 2.84US $ |1pc for Ford Focus B&O module plug terminal 2X10 20PIN plug cable| | - AliExpress)
  • Run new tweeter wiring from the Helix up to the front dash.
  • Install door speakers & sub.
  • Apply sound deadening.

Kit
Hertz Mille Pro MPK165.3 2 Way Components for Front (New, £320 from CEN)
Hertz Mille Pro MP70.3 for Center channel (New, £160 from CEN)
Hertz Hi-Energy HSK165.2 2 Way Components for Rear (Previous Installs)
Hertz HX250D 10" Subwoofer (Previous Installs)
- Installed into a FBKolo02 "Basser" Sub Box (£140 from InCarProducts)
mObridge Ford A2B Standard Preamp (New, £650, Imported direct from mObridge AU)
Helix V Eight MK2 DSP & Amplifier (New, £850 from CEN)
Dodo Mat Deadn Pro Sound Deadening (New, £50 from CEN)
Dodo Mat Acoustic Liner (New, £50 from CEN)

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Concerns
Cost(!) and EV range post install, due to weight and battery draw.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Today was my first day off work since before Christmas, and I intended to rest up. Normally, I'd have a Sub Enclosure made up by Visual Ice, but to my disappointment, he was just too busy to assist, which very nearly put a nail in the coffin of this project. I'm not against knocking something up with Fiberglass, but I'm no pro, and the free time I had when I last did a custom build no longer exists!

But after measuring up and taking a gamble, on the "Vauxhall Insignia Estate Wheel Box" aka, FBKolo02 "Basser" Sub Box (£140 from InCarProducts), I am pleased to say it arrived today, and within 10 minutes it was butchered ready for a fit test. If it didn't fit, my plan was to use it as a base for butchering and "making it fit", the measurements were fairly close, so I was hopeful.

Anyway, upon arrival, and eyeing it up, I realised I would at the very least have to knock the spare wheel brace bracket off the enclosure, which the Dremel made easy work of.

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With that bit cut off, things got tense. Will it fit... The answer?

Just. It's very snug, and I had to slide the battery as far towards me as possible to sneak an extra couple of mm... This was a case of undoing the 10mm and sliding the battery towards "you". I've also removed the metal battery brace, which is just a bit of H&S gone mad :p

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You'll immediately notice there's going to be no/little room for the battery cover to go back on. Ill probably end up slicing the original foam one to at least cover the batter to some extent, the covers are only £13 from the dealer should I decide to butcher it.

Anyway, when in Rome, I stripped the boot clear...

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And applied deadening to the whole boot floor.

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Not bad for an hours work in the snow. Especially when I had zero desire to do this today.

Next up, Amp rack...
 

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Kuga 2020 ST Line PHEV, 19" Wheels with Tech and Winter Packs
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great effort and post Vini, not sure I would have the confidence to rip apart a new car so huge credence to you. Thanks for the post, impressed
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
So the 12v battery is not secure now.
Of course it is. The cross brace doesn't hold the battery tight/in/down, I actually think its just to stop the boot liner flexing down on to the battery.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·

Amp Rack knocked up... Considering I intended to chill out and play some Xbox on my day off, I've made steady progress, especially as doing this wasn't on the cards.
 

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2020, Kuga PHEV, ST Line X.
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Looking forwad to see next steps. I intend to change front and rear door speakers. So if you can post installation steps and spekaers dimmension details, I would appritiate it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Looking forwad to see next steps. I intend to change front and rear door speakers. So if you can post installation steps and spekaers dimmension details, I would appritiate it.
Check this whilst you wait in anticipation…


If he carries on at this rate, he’ll have to open his own Forum! 🤭
Im surprised and thankful this place is actually busy! Most forums I frequented died/moved over to Facebook!
 

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One more question. What size (diameter and depth) and type of spekers (watts, ohms, etc) do you recommend for front and rear door replacement? Im not and expert in this area, but Im pretty sure that replacing the factory speakers can make significant improvement and thats why I wnat to try it :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
If you’re just looking to replace the speakers, without anything else, I personally wouldn’t bother. Some of the Americans have, so it would be worth reading those posts around the web. Ultimately it would be a case of understanding the specs of the B&O amp (watts per channel etc).

That said, I think Focal do a plug and play replacement set.

The thing I find that lets the stock setup down, is sound proofing/deadening and the staging (time alignment). The sound deadening you can attempt to fix, the time alignment, I don’t think there’s much you can do without ripping it all out.

I haven’t yet ventured into the doors, but 6.5” inch is pretty much the industry standard. Whatever size is in here, I would just adapt to 6.5”/165mm. Depth wise, no idea what there is to play with, but again, just adapt.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
So the missing piece of the puzzle finally landed from literally, the other side of the world - just in time for the long weekend. This is the mObridge DA-G2 A2B PreAmp. This unit replaces the B&O amp "like for like", but gives pre-amp connections allowing you to do the fun stuff. It's also designed, I believe, to simply live in the same location as the factory amp, so its simply a case of removing the B&O and installing this. However, based on the location of the Amp in the Kuga, my plan is to extend the Ford wiring into the boot, so I can keep the mObridge module visible/accessible and on hand.

Ahead of its arrival, I'd ordered a mini-USB extension lead, and based on some Googling/a whim some Molex adapters (male and female) in order to conjure up an extension harness.

Upon receiving the mObridge A2B unit, the first thing I wanted to check was my Molex gamble. Turns out I failed, but not by much. I ordered Molex Connector Part Number - 34690-0200 and it transpires I needed, Molex Connector Part Number - 34690-0201. The difference is the Polarization/notch/channel, which I should hopefully be able to fix with the dremel - so not too bad.

Anyway, not much I can do until time allows, despite being giddy :)

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Upon receiving the mObridge A2B unit, the first thing I wanted to check was my Molex gamble. Turns out I failed, but not by much. I ordered Molex Connector Part Number - 34690-0200 and it transpires I needed, Molex Connector Part Number - 34690-0201. The difference is the Polarization/notch/channel, which I should hopefully be able to fix with the dremel - so not too bad.
Turns out, mObridge got it wrong, and the female receptacle is the Molex Connector Part Number - 34690-0200 (Polarization A) module. Meaning the male Ford connector on the stock wiring is the Molex Connector Part Number - 34729-0200.

Anyway, not to worry after all that, as the stock harness has enough play in it to come down into the boot! How do I know.......
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
How to access the B&O Amplifier/B&O Subwoofer

The B&O Amp is location in the right hand side of the boot, above the subwoofer behind all the trim. In order to access the B&O Subwoofer, and also the B&O Amplifier. You will need;
  • Trim tool
  • Flat blade screwdriver
  • Philips Screwdriver (PH2)
  • Torx T25 driver
  • Ratchet and extension.
    • 8mm socket
    • 10mm socket
  • Gloves and patience recommended

Start by removing the boot floor panel, and move it out of the way. With that gone, locate the two cargo net mounts (red), and pry them open (green) with a flat blade screwdriver/trim tool.
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Unscrew the mounts using your T25.
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Remove two push fit/pop fit trim screws along front edge of the boot scuff plate trim using your Trim tool. (Not shown, but they're about in line with the T25 screws, but "inside the boot" pointing towards you).

Pull the boot scuff plate to release the six clips and move it out of the way.
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Using the flat blade screwdriver, unscrew the two plastic screw caps inside the foam cargo tray, and remove the tray. (Not shown)

Move round to your drivers side rear passenger seat, open the door and pull up the rubber door seal just enough to get easier access to the trim. Pry up the rear door scuff plate to release five clips and put the scuff plate somewhere safe.
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(It might be beneficial at this point, to fold flat the rear seats and slide the seat as far forward as possible - it helped me, but probably not essential).

With the passenger door open, start by working free the large trim panel. Pry out sides and top of rear side panel to release fifteen clips, pry off the boot Led harness using fingers (wiggle) or trim tool, and disconnect harness which will allow you to move side panel. The fold flat seat release is also connected. I didn't disconnect this as I found I had enough freedom to work with it whilst connected.

Right now you should be able to see/access the Subwoofer (Red), but also, the **** fiddly to get at B&O Amp (Green), which is partially covered by the top trim panel.

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The way the Amp sits, you'd expect that you just undo the 4x 10mm bolts using a socket and it will fold down like a dinner tray towards you. Try as I might to squeeze the Amp out of the tiny gap, I couldn't clear the Seat Belt tensioner, so I had to remove the top trim also. A single 8mm bolt and ten or so pop clips, this then allowed the B&O Amp to slide up and out like a slice of toast.

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A bit of manipulation/removal of four or so trim clips and the wiring harness is free to move around.
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This will tide me over now until I get time to do the speakers. Then it should just be a case of hooking everything up.
 
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Been a bit quiet over the last week or two as the A2B preamp has been giving me a headache. The joys of buying a relatively new product with very little information/user base.

Anyway, I had a breakthrough last night (with thanks to some folks over at DIYMobileAudio) in that it’s now passing through the audio to my aftermarket kit, so that inspired me to spend an hour this morning running the wiring for the tweeters from rear to front.

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All I need now is the time to fit the speakers… could do with another long weekend 🙈

How it should look… (obviously/hopefully a bit neater once I’m ready)

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