A client from Hanover, Pennsylvania, stopped by Westminster Speed and Sound with his 2016 Polaris Slingshot, looking for a serious upgrade to his stereo system. Our team was familiar with the stereo system in these vehicles because we had just worked on another one. Since this was the SL model, it had what Polaris calls its six-speaker system, an in-dash media center and a backup camera. If you have listened to this system, the music playing through it lacks definition, and the output is very low. What that means to you is a musical experience that is sorely lacking.
One of our guys spent significant time with the client, from looking over the vehicle to listening to equipment. In the end, we worked up a proposal that he liked, so we set time for him to drop off the Slingshot.
JL Audio Front Speaker Upgrade
We began by replacing the factory speaker pods with a set from SSV. The new pods are designed to handle a 6.5” speaker as well as an optional tweeter. The client opted to go with a set of JL Audio M650-CCX-SG-TB 6.5” marine coaxials. These speakers are the finest weatherproof speakers on the market, and are even made in America! We chose the coaxial model since its tweeter is built into the speaker grille. This way, if the client thinks he needs some extra treble to overcome road noise, a set of JL Audio M100 tweeters can be added at a later date.
Great Sounding Bass Thanks To JL Audio
Since any good audio system needs bass, we installed an SSV 10” subwoofer enclosure behind the driver’s seat in the spot originally holding a storage pocket. We also installed a JL Audio 10W1v3 subwoofer in the box and mounted it securely in place. While the Slingshot was apart, we prewired the passenger side storage area in case the client wanted to add a second subwoofer in the future.
Power To Overcome Road Noise
Now it was time to focus on power for the system so it could easily overcome road noise. We went back to JL Audio, choosing a pair of Powersports water-resistant and corrosion-resistant models. We used an HX280/4 to power the speakers, sending 280 watts of clean power to them. We used the MX500/1 amp to power the subwoofer – with 500 watts of clean power on tap, it is surely up to the job. We mounted both of these amplifiers securely underneath the passenger seat, and neatly loomed and routed the wiring.
Upgraded Source Unit
As we were getting ready to start the build, the client opted to have us change the stereo system in the dash. He supplied us with a protective splash cover that we used to protect the front of the Pioneer AVIC-5200NEX in-dash navigation system. Installing this cover was no easy feat, since we had to remove the dash out of the Slingshot to mount the new radio properly. When it comes time to modify the dash opening, we had to make precision cuts – there is no room for error.
USB Ports And Backup Camera Integration
In the glovebox, there was a single USB pigtail that ran out of a hole in the back, and we knew it could be done better. Our team flush-mounted a weather-resistant USB port in the same location that now held two USB ports with a protective cover. The integration specialists at Westminster Speed and Sound are often tasked with keeping factory equipment working when adding a new stereo system. In this case, we modified the Polaris backup camera to work with the new touchscreen unit.
Overboard Installation Processes
Anytime we are working on a vehicle that is going to be exposed to extreme use and conditions, we go overboard on the installation to make sure it will be reliable for years. We soldered all connections with heat-shrink, applied for corrosion resistance, and loomed and securely mounted all wiring to allow for easy servicing in the future.
Looks Can Be Deceiving
On a final note, while the Slingshot looks like an easy vehicle to work on, it requires is a lot of work to properly disassemble and reassemble the vehicle. We removed and reinstalled a total of 110 bolts, screws and push pins during this build. Many items had to be modified and/or custom-machined to make this install a reality. Since the factory audio system costs over $2,000 as an option on base models, we completely removed the stereo system, including the wiring harness. Doing this will allow the client to sell it and recoup some of the money spent on this upgrade.
Client Loved His New Polaris Slingshot Stereo
When the time came to deliver the vehicle back to its owner, we were excited to see how he liked it. As we showed him around the vehicle, he was impressed with the quality of our work. When we cranked it up for the first time, he loved the improved sound quality.
Contact Us For More Information About Powersports Upgrades
If you own a Slingshot or other powersports vehicles and would like to upgrade the audio system, we invite you to contact Westminster Speed and Sound in Westminster, Maryland. One of our audio specialists will work with you to design and build the solution that best fits your needs.