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2003 f150 Lightning - Pulley kit, shift kit, BPU - intake/headers/magnaflow exhaust
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So as the title states I'm looking to upgrade my 2003 lightnings stereo which is a factory 6 disc changer which was the premium package and I wish to upgrade it to be more modern.

With that being said I know I need a double din from what I've learned, but all the places I see say I will need to modify the dash in a way that can't be unmodified, is that true? It was said that I'd have to cut out a brace plate? Would that still be true for the premium model that came with the 6 disc changer? Thanks in advance.

Also, my door panel looks a little different than those that I've seen, it has the 6×8 door speaker, but it also has a tweeter right beside it, it's 100% a factory setup but everywhere I look I can't find any with a tweeter added that wasn't aftermarket.

My budget for a new double din is under 400, it needs bluetooth, Android auto, and SiriusXm with backup camera capabilities. Thanks!

Here's the interior and door panel.
 

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2003 f150 Lightning - Pulley kit, shift kit, BPU - intake/headers/magnaflow exhaust
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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
All lightnings came with the 6 disc in 03/04.
Yes the dash has to be modified.
How does it have to be modified? I just read a brace behind the old deck has to be removed. Is that correct? And it's irreversible? Trying to keep it as oem as I can without heavy constructive modding but I can if absolutely needed. Thanks! Also does it share the same wiring diagram and other things as the regular 03 04 f150? So I'd be ok getting a chilton manual for that era of f150?

Also it seems my speaker set is 100% OEM but I see a tweeter separate from the speaker beside it, is that aftermarket or OEM premium option? Thanks for the help so far. Did you have any recommendations on a good double din unit that did all the options above I listed? Thanks!
 

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10 second street truck
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I dont have a recommendation in that price point. I installed my double din a few years ago so it's not relevant.

There are YouTube and pictures of how it's modified. No, it's no reversible.

As far as speakers and what's stock. I haven't had a stock stereo in a decade and do not recall what's stock.

For stereo wiring yes it's the same as a 03 f150. Be careful of the 2004, as it was new body style. The lightning and "heritage" we're carried over for 1 year.

Some under hood and trans wiring is different.
 

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I just did this in early august. For a double din you're going to have to enlarge the opening in the main "radio hole" bracing behind the trim panel. You'll also need to modify the trim panel itself, as well as cut out nearly ALL of the shrouding behind the radio deep in the dash. All of these modifications, since you're cutting and sawing shit out of the dash, are irreversable. I chose not to do the dremel route, as i didnt want dust everywhere under the dash. I used a combination of a hack saw for larger cuts, and a soldering iron to melt my way through plastic cleanly and mess-free. When you're done, only the trim panel isn't hidden. So you could always buy another trim panel to modify and if you wanted to go back, put the unmodified trim panel back in, and the rest would be modified but not-visible to anyone that didnt know better.

For wiring in a new head unit just do yourself a favor and buy the adapter. Wire that adapter to the new stereo harness prior to sliding it in the dash and you can just plug n play to the factory harness right to the new stereo (unless you have an amp, etc and need to also wire in separate remote lines). I think this is the one i used: Scosche FD16B. I just cut square and terminated all the wires I didnt need on both harnesses so there were no unwanted connections/grounds made.

I just got the ATOTO Premium S8 7" for like $339. I kinda hate the name, and i hate having a name like that showing in my Ford. I just gotta find a gel sticker ford logo or something to stick over "ATOTO", lol. This HU does all those things you're wanting but you'll be f'n around with the camera wiring if you are trying to do that using your own cameras. ATOTO sells their own camera unsure on compatibility etc as I'd never bother with such a nanny device as a rear cam.

Speakers is up to you to figure out.
 

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My lightning had one of these installed and i have to say, it looks great and works amazing.
 

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It mounts an ipad mini in your dash.

Fills in the space nicely.

Mine came with a 1st gen ipad mini in it that was essentially obsolete but I was able to just slide a 5th gen in there.

It connects to the main audio via BT, AUX or USB.

Hoping to get a back up camera next as it will integrate with this also.

Just fills in the dash nicely, looks nearly stock and gives me some modern features like being able to pair with my phone and stream media.

I'm new here, will see if I can sort out how to post a pic...
 

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02 lightning/03 cobruh
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It mounts an ipad mini in your dash.

Fills in the space nicely.

Mine came with a 1st gen ipad mini in it that was essentially obsolete but I was able to just slide a 5th gen in there.

It connects to the main audio via BT, AUX or USB.

Hoping to get a back up camera next as it will integrate with this also.

Just fills in the dash nicely, looks nearly stock and gives me some modern features like being able to pair with my phone and stream media.

I'm new here, will see if I can sort out how to post a pic...
Looks like he has a updated version. That's an 11in iPad I believe.. Apparently you can send in your bezel and they will modify it. But I can't get a hold of them at all..
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neat .. but I wouldn't wanna leave it plugged in all the time after throwing out the inflated over charged cell phone I've been using as a wifi antenna on my PC for a few years..

but the I pad and a single din stereo below where the heater controls belong would be cool with the heater controls moved down to the console..
 

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02 lightning/03 cobruh
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It slides out super easily from what I've seen.... they finally emailed me back, but I'm out at that price point lol. But they sell just the dock for 200-250 if you wanna try and finish the rest diy.
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