View Full Version : HUD for the CTS-V?

09-29-11, 11:11 PM
I have a HUD in my Corvette and love it, and really miss it in my V. For many years it's been possible to install the HUD in Corvette C5's and C6's that didn't come that way from the factory. It is also now possilbe to retrofit the 5th Gen Camaro with a HUD. In 2010 it wasn't an option, and now optional on the 2011's. The Camaro ZL1 (with the LSA motor) is coming out pretty soon will sport a HUD that will feature all of the regular Camaro HUD information plus a boost meter and G-meter. The wiring for them is pretty easy, a connection to the display controls, plus 4 other wires (I believe they are power, ground, LAN Bus, and VSS) so the only real issue is room under the dash

If you could add a HUD to your CTS-V would you? The parts for the Camaro retrofit is around $600, and takes from 5 to 7 hours to install because the entire dash has to be removed. I'm thinking about seeing if there is room for the projector in my V and wondering if anyone else out there would be interested in adding a HUD to their V. The reason I'm asking is that if enough people would do this, then I'm sure I can get some assistance from parts suppliers and professional installers who do Corvette and Camaro HUD installs. The only downside if this actually works is that the Camaro projector has a Chevy animation at boot up. :crying2:

09-29-11, 11:15 PM
Nope. These are really a gimmick also. It sounds like an impossible task, not to mention no parts that would bolt in either. I'll just use it for other things.

09-29-11, 11:41 PM
There are two camps with respect to HUDs. Those that find them "gimmicky" and those that really find them useful. I'm in the later camp and interested in finding out how many others are in that camp as well. IMHO the HUD on my Corvette is the most useful option on the car.

Here is a list of features the HUD supports:
Outside temperture
Transmission position
Compass heading
Supercharger boost
Brief display of radio station (including XM and CD track)
Turn-by-turn navigation (NAV and OnStar)
Turn signal and hi-beam indicators
Phone number information on incoming and outgoing calls (from both OnStar and Bluetooth)
DIC pop-up messages (Check tire pressure, Cruise set to, Low fuel, Traction Control active, stabilitrak active, etc.)
Available in 3 languages (English, French, and Spanish)
English and Metric units

09-29-11, 11:43 PM
I love having a HUD and I'd do this in a heartbeat if such an option becomes available.


09-30-11, 12:05 AM
u guys gotta remember that for the HUD too work you need a special windshield
when i was replacing my windshield they asked if I had a HUD bcuz its more expensive windshield

09-30-11, 12:16 AM
The HUD windshield makes the HUD appear slightly clearer and brighter but is not necessary to use a HUD. Hundreds of Corvette (and Camaro) owners have installed and enjoyed HUDs without the HUD windshield. On the Corvette, the HUD windshield is slightly more expensive than a 'regular' one and exact same price on the Camaro, but in any event is an expensive replacement that HUD retrofitters don't install unless it's being it's being replaced because of cracks or chips . Off course we would not have the option for a HUD windshield because the CTS was never designed to have one, but a HUD would still work.

09-30-11, 12:35 AM
I would be in.

09-30-11, 08:37 AM
I would love one. I wasn't too sure about them till I spent some time with mine in my Z06. It's not just the wealth of info you can display, but that you don't have your head down in the cockpit to see it. Your head is up and looking outside the car and your focus s still on long distance, not near vision.

09-30-11, 09:40 AM
I have a HUD in my '11 Buick LaCrosse & love it. It is one of the things I wish the V had, especially since it costs 30K more than the Buick. It's actually part of the reason why I got the Buick instead of a new STS at the time.

09-30-11, 12:15 PM
I would love to have HUD in my Vagon. I recently stopped at the dealer to get some parts, and saw a used XLR on the lot, and noticed it had it. Thought to myself, "Dang, wish the V had that"...

Let me know what you come up with, but I'll bet it would be dang near impossible to add, considering there is no option for it. Just MHO...

09-30-11, 03:11 PM
HUDs should be standard in all vehicles.
I had it on my Grand Prix GTP... I miss it soooo much.
Gimmick... WTF. I guess he's never had one.

09-30-11, 04:14 PM
I am in, I have one on the corvette and thats one thing I do really want on the V....

Count me in


09-30-11, 05:08 PM
I'd be first in line, was researching this a couple months ago

09-30-11, 08:18 PM
Isn't there a special laminate in a Corvette windshield for HUD?

09-30-11, 08:24 PM
the lack of a HUD was one of the things that actually *did* bother me about the CTS.. W-body Pontiac's have it but my luxury sports sedan doesn't? WTF it's a decade's old technology.

10-01-11, 09:54 AM
Put me in the camp of liking the HUD's. My C5 vette had it as part of the package and I was so-so on the idea. After having it, you just get used to adjusting your eye focus distance and not having to look down. In my feedback to GM, I suggested making the HUD a dot matrix so other stuff like directions for NAV could be displayed. The C5 UD was a fixed format, so only a fixed set of data could be displayed. I was pretty happy to see it changed for my C6 vette to do that. I don't know why they opted not to put the HUD in the CTS. It is available in the STS & XLR(cough vette), so its not like they did not put them in caddy's. Maybe they thought the pop-up screen removed the need. Dunno. I suspect it may be challenging to retrofit a HUD. The mechanism looks to have a fair amount of depth. I doubt there is that much open space that you could grab under the dash. The display is also very sensitive to the angles involved to get the reflection visible. Just move your head a little and notice it all but disappears from the windshield. So if you do try to install, make sure your going to be able to see it.

10-01-11, 10:01 AM
Hopefully GM will put it in the next gen V.

10-01-11, 10:11 AM
Gimmick? Yeah, that's what the fighter pilots say about it too (yeah right)! I would be very interested.

10-02-11, 10:33 AM
It's actually part of the reason why I got the Buick instead of a new STS at the time.
The STS has always had HUD available since it debuted in 2005. The STS also has a trick 4-color HUD vs the blue only of the 'vette and most other GM cars.

WTF it's a decade's old technology.
It is older than that! GM put the first HUD in a production car for the 1988 model year:

They really pioneered its use in early Pontiacs and some Oldsmobiles. Then they used it to display nightvision in the early 2000's Deville. I don't understand why they haven't adapted it to cars like the CTS yet, it is impressive tech and a very useful feature.

I think retrofitting it would be hard, because you need to have buttons to control the brightness and the height of the display. On those other cars, you swap a trim piece for the piece with the buttons. On a CTS, you'd have to fab something up, and it probably wouldn't look very factory.

10-02-11, 06:40 PM
The STS has always had HUD available since it debuted in 2005. The STS also has a trick 4-color HUD vs the blue only of the 'vette and most other GM cars.

Except it wasn't available in any combination or package with the AWD (all wheel drive).

10-02-11, 07:36 PM
Don't forget the reason 5th gen Camaro guys are able to add it so easily is that the logistics for adding it were already in place, even on the 2010. All that's needed is adding the hardware and turning it on in the BCM.
And yes, there is a different windshield for HUD equipped Camaros. The Camaro guys have reported it's a little difficult to see the HUD during the daytime with the standard windshield. The HUD specific windshield focuses the reflection better, supposedly.

10-02-11, 07:36 PM
The controls will be the tricky part, but not impossible. The Corvette HUD has a whole bank of buttons on the left side of the instrument panel that would never work in a CTS. The Camaro HUD (which is the one I'm use) has a much simpler controls. Just a single rocker switch to control the up/down position, and a single round control (like a volume control) to adjust brightness which has a button in the center to control which "page" is displayed. I'm sure with a bit of imagination these can be integrated into the CTS dash and look factory/professional. It might even be possible to use the STS HUD control.

As soon as the Service Manual I ordered arrives, I'm gonna pull the dash apart on my V to see if there is any room under there at all to install the HUD projector. After doing some quick measurements, I've determined that the opening needed for the HUD in the dash is available. I was worried that "dome" on the instrument panel would be in the way but it's not. I'll keep everyone posted on my progress.

10-02-11, 08:14 PM
My hat is off to you for undertaking that kind of project. I hope it works. Sounds like a nightmare though if something goes wrong.

10-03-11, 11:34 AM
A HUD would really help complete this car. I've got one in my GTP and I tell you it's effortless to know your speed or even radio station without taking your eyes off the road. Not only is it cool, it really is much safer. There's a reason the most high tech business jets and fighter jets use them. Combined with steering wheel controls it allows your peripheral vision to keep an eye on the road while changing radio stations or checking your speed. It also helps you know when you're doing 140 when your speedo only goes to 115.

Here's a pic of just the speed, but the vette and BMW HUDs have come a long way from a basic LED readout!


10-03-11, 12:00 PM
I love the HUD and oil temp. display in my Vette. Wish the V had both.

10-04-11, 08:25 AM
Except it wasn't available in any combination or package with the AWD (all wheel drive).
I don't mean to be difficult, but according to the ordering guide, the AWD and RWD cars have the same packaging for 2011. HUD was part of the "Driver Awareness Package", which also required the "V6 Premium Luxury Collection".

To the OP, it sounds like an interesting undertaking. HUD would be a great addition, it would be awesome if you get it working.

FYI, some pictures of the four-color HUD that the STS used. I think it's pretty slick vs the blue only:

http://research.cars.com/crp/vp/images/08cadillac_sts/HUD_1_KM.jpg http://research.cars.com/crp/vp/images/08cadillac_sts/HUD_2_KM.jpg

10-04-11, 12:45 PM
I don't mean to be difficult, but according to the ordering guide, the AWD and RWD cars have the same packaging for 2011. HUD was part of the "Driver Awareness Package", which also required the "V6 Premium Luxury Collection".

You're not being difficult at all. At the time (about this time last year) when I was looking I was pretty sure I didn't see that available in the AWD version, just the rear wheel, especially anywhere locally. The LaCrosse also had the side collision avoidance, NAV, rear camera (with moving grid lines), oversize sunroof, heated & ventilated seats, heated steering wheel, Harmon Kardon 384 watt sound system with hard drive (much better than the Bose in our V's I think), adaptive HID headlamps that move like the V, EZ key passive entry/push button keyless start, front & rear airbags all over the place, 120volt outlet, etc. The camera and a few other options for sure weren't available on the STS. All in all, I liked the Buick much better than the STS as far as interior design, comfort, ride quality, and available options. Price was not a deciding factor at all.

I really had my heart set on the STS and was actually on the laptop looking for them for the 20th time on a Sunday night when the Buick commercial came on the TV. Just for the hell of it I went to the website, started comparing the cars at length and ended up finding a fully loaded LaCrosse exactly as I would have ordered it on the dealer lot about 1/2 mile from my house. Drove it at 9 AM monday & told them to have it ready by the afternoon for pickup. I haven't regretted that decision one bit, never owned a Buick before but they built a pretty nice car. It certainly does not fit in the "your grandfathers Buick" category any more.

Update: I just went to the Caddy site & the V6 premium package with HUD was only available on the rear wheel drive build. I tried to build the STS both ways & not available in AWD, just the "standard" & "luxury" package. Living in western NY with our winter weather, I wanted to try AWD for a daily driver.

10-04-11, 01:16 PM
Me likes the 4 color HUD. Wish my vette had that instead of mono.

10-04-11, 05:10 PM
I didn't realize the LaCrosse even had HUD until you mentioned it. I checked out Buick's site, and it's a far cry from the original W-body car. It definitely has some nice features, including available AWD, and pretty good pricing. I think down the road you'd be ahead too in terms of depreciation, as the STS changed little from '05 to '11, which hurts the price of the newer cars, as the main differentiator (more or less) is warranty, which is only a couple grand.

10-04-11, 05:22 PM
Except it wasn't available in any combination or package with the AWD (all wheel drive).

Wrong. Fathers 07 1SG AWD STS4 V8 has both auto cruise control and heads up display.

10-04-11, 06:09 PM
Wrong. Fathers 07 1SG AWD STS4 V8 has both auto cruise control and heads up display.

Maybe in '07, but all the info for an '11 says no way. The "build you own" section, the spec sheets and the "compare different package" parts of the site say not available. The camera, updated platform and the rest of the package was the deal breaker at the time.

I didn't realize the LaCrosse even had HUD until you mentioned it. I checked out Buick's site, and it's a far cry from the original W-body car. It definitely has some nice features, including available AWD, and pretty good pricing. I think down the road you'd be ahead too in terms of depreciation, as the STS changed little from '05 to '11, which hurts the price of the newer cars, as the main differentiator (more or less) is warranty, which is only a couple grand.

The Buick surprised me too, who would have thought.... I guess it does prove that advertising on TV sometimes works. I don't see me buying a food processor, a set of knives, or a penis extender from the 3 AM infomercial any time soon though :)

10-04-11, 06:57 PM
Interested for sure.

10-05-11, 08:28 PM
Was something that I used heavily in the Vette. I actually installed it myself for about $350 in parts and about 2 hours of work. Never had a problem seeing the display even with the targa top off on a bright sunny day. GM missed the boat on not making it optional on the CTS.

10-12-11, 10:20 PM
I got my set of service manuals today and in the next few weeks I will start to do some exploratory surgery on the V to see if there is any room under the dash to install the projector. I've have put together a parts list and depending on where the display controls are, the total parts cost will be between $700 and $800. I've got two different locations for the HUD controls under consideration. The first is on the trim panel to the right of the DIC controls and the other is on the knee bolster trim directly below it. The upper trim piece is cheaper but there isn't much room for the control. The knee bolster is probably a better location, but it costs around $100 more and will require a bit more work to modify to make it look good since it's leather wrapped.

This weekend I'm finishing a Zaino treatment, installing new Hawk Performance Ceramics, and doing a prototype install for a StealthLink so next weekend looks like the earliest I'll be able to start this project. The StealthLink is a quick connect battery maintainer connection that works with CTEK and SAE 2 wire connections like the Battery Tender. They have kits today for Corvette C5's, C6's and motorcycles. A kit specifically for the CTS sedan (and possibly coupe) should be out in the next few weeks if the prototype goes in successfully this weekend.

10-13-11, 08:51 AM
Reference new infotainment system. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WpdQXAgo0pk

10-14-11, 01:11 AM
to make it look good since it's leather wrapped. Um.......isn't that grained vinyl?

10-14-11, 08:11 PM
Could be, but if it's leather it will be easier to modify. I don't think vinyl is tough enough to survive intact when removed from the underlying plastic.

01-08-12, 10:33 PM
Been a while since I first started talking about the HUD but my house had some minor damage after being hit by falling tree limbs during a hurricane and spent a most nice weekends working on cleaning up the yard and fixing the damage, and then it got cold. This past weekend was nice and I pulled the dash apart on the V and have some good news and some bad news.

The bad news is that there is definately not enough room under the dash to fit the projector. The good news is that since that is the case, there won't be any need to tear the entire dash out to put in the HUD! On the Camaro, a first time dash removal and reinstall takes about 8 to 10 hours, and at least 4 hours for people who have done it a few times. The HUD won't fit under the dash, but it will fit under the dash visor (the round "hat" just above the instrument panel). The bad news is that a custom dash visor will need to made because it doesn't go all the way to winshield. The good news is that the custom visor will cover up the hole that I'll have to make in the dash for the projector. The bad news is that a custom dash visor will be pricey, but the good news is that it will make the install significantly easier and cheaper. The entire install, even for a novice, should take no more than two hours, and less than hour for someone who has done it before. Just as a point of reference, the dash visor and instrument panel cluster can be taken out and put back in about 15 minutes and the knee bolster takes about the same.

The HUD controls won't fit on the panel where the DIC controls are, there just isn't enough room on it. It will fit on the knee bolster, but still unsure if it might be a knee knocker. The right side of the steering wheel where the vent hole is for the HVAC would be perfect, but this piece is part of the dash and to remove it would take at least as long as it does on the Camaro. This still might be an option if I can figure out an easy way mount the switch controls in it without removing it. Unless it's really simple, I won't try it because I don't want to have to replace an expensive dash because I cut a hole in it!

The Camaro ZL1 still isn't out, so the projector probably isn't available either, but going to check. In the mean time I'm going to order some of the parts to start work on building the custom wiring harness and figuring out how and where to mount the HUD controls.

01-08-12, 10:45 PM
I asked the same question a couple of weeks ago to the group and got one reply......

I would be in, if it works..


01-16-12, 08:50 PM
Have made some progress on my HUD project over the last week. This weekend I ordered all of the parts I'll need for the HUD install except for the projector (bezel, HUD switch for the the Camaro and LaCrosse, projector harness, cluster visor and defroster grill, and some bolts and nuts.) The LaCrosse HUD switch and Camaro HUD switch are a little bit different so I'm going to see which one will work best.

I contacted a GM parts distributor that sells projector kits for the C6 Corvette and 5th Gen Camaro to inquire about the availability of the Camaro ZL1 projector. No surprise it's not available yet since the ZL1 hasn't even started production and won't hit dealer lots until mid March. The distributor has made the offer for me to come up and inspect one at his shop, which I will probably do in the next few weekends.

I've done quite a bit of research on the electrical diagrams on the Camaro, CTS, HUD projector, and HUD switch and have put together the requirements for a custom harness that will go inline into an existing connection under the dash. With the custom harness there won't be any need to splice into any wires and will make the install much easier and quicker. The connection is right under the steering wheel with easy access to the projector and switch locations. I have contacted a local company that makes custom wiring harnesses about making them for me. Not sure of the price, but it will be worth it. They will source all the connectors and terminals and test each harness to ensure that every pin is terminated correctly. The pigtails and service connectors (connectors with terminated wires) for the projector and HUD switch cost more than $300 list (around $200 buying online) from GM, so a custom harness is going to be cheaper anyway. I had to track down the schematics for Camaro HUD and information on the connectors. The hard part was finding the right connection under the dash that has all the right circuits and getting the correct connector part numbers for the connectors. Some of the information in the Service Manuals was incorrect or not available.

I should get the parts in a week, and then I'll start working on how to mount the HUD Switch and getting a prototype harness made. Also working on finding a local CTS owner who wants a HUD and see if I can use that as a prototype vehicle. A CTS can use the existing Camaro HUD projector without giving up any features.

02-26-12, 07:37 PM
I went ahead and ordered the existing Camaro HUD because the ZL1 HUD isn't going to be available for a few months and I couldn't really do anything without one. I now have a HUD in the dash.


To get this far I had to remove the dash cover which took about 2.5 hours. Pretty much everything in the dash had to come out, center console, NAV screen, glove box, etc as well as the steering wheel and both stalks. Not very difficult and can probably do it in about an hour and half next time.

Under the dash cover is the metal dash structure which is made of pot metal. I removed one of the metal brackets that is an attachment point for the dash pad with a dremel. I took off the upper leather dash cover from the dash pad and then cut a big hole in the dash cover with the dremel.

Still waiting on my custom wiring harness. The company I have working on it has run into quite a few issues and should have a cable soon. Before I start moding the dash pad and IP cover and put everything back together I need to check the alignment of the HUD and I need the cable to power it up. The HUD is now in the way of both the driver air duct and driver window defroster duct. I will use a piece of flexible plastic duct to replace one factory one (there is plenty of room for it to go under the HUD), but no way to rerun the defroster duct. I will probably connect this to front air duct instead.

Have also been working on getting the HUD switch installed. It won't fit anywhere on the dash, but I found a great alternate location on the steering column schroud. I had a template made so I can route out the holes for the switch and knob. A friend with a wood working shop is making a bracket to hold the schroud so I route out the holes.

Here are a few pics I took.


02-26-12, 10:30 PM
I am in. asked this question about 3 months ago.

02-27-12, 09:27 AM
I think I would be in also - would just have to find someone to install it. Can't wait to see how it looks!

02-27-12, 11:03 AM
I'm in as I would luv to have this option.

03-31-12, 08:54 PM

04-01-12, 10:28 PM
The company I was working with to create the wiring harness was in completely over their head. After working with them for more than 8 weeks and hearing "we will be ready to make a prototype in a few weeks" for more than a month they finally admitted they couldn't source the connectors and terminals. For the last few weeks I've been trying to buy all the parts and this past Thursday I got in the last of the connectors. Finding all the connectors, terminals and tools was very challenging. Two of the connectors I need are made by Yazaki and only ONE of their US factory authorized distributor sells these particular connectors and they won't even talk to you unless you're buying thousands of connectors. I've spent more than $350 for the connectors, terminals and wire, and another $150 for the crimp tools but I have enough connectors to make 25 harnesses. I will need to purchase more terminals to make more than a few.

Anyway I need the wiring harness in order to fire up the HUD in order to get positioned correctly and this week I will be making the harness. A new custom visor is needed to cover up the projector and have been working on a prototype made out of stiff paper. Still looking for a company that will be able to make the visor out of plastic and leather. I have contacted a few companies including the one that makes the CTS dash to see if they interested in helping me out. Once I get the HUD working, I'll post some more pics.

07-27-12, 10:13 PM
Any updates?

07-28-12, 10:12 AM
Would love to hear more. After going to the track, having a heads up display would make shift so much easier.

06-09-13, 01:02 AM
I'd love to hear more, also. I've been looking to get a V, and was bummed there's no HUD. I found this while researching what it would take to make it happen.

06-09-13, 03:36 PM
Why not use an ipod touch with a HUD mount? It will give you speed and direction etc

08-30-13, 01:21 PM
Why not use an ipod touch with a HUD mount? It will give you speed and direction etc

Not quite the same, esp in respects to the speedo and other goodies.

08-31-13, 12:38 AM
My Stsv has it its only fun for a fue weeks then you don't even look at it.

08-31-13, 01:48 AM
My Diablo tuner supplies all kinds of info. Cant see tearing aprt the dash to display it on the windshield.