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Sunday, June 5, 2016

Japanese navigation workaround solution

How to use non-subaru maps on your OEM subaru Nav

Hi Everyone,

I'm kinda new here and lurk often but rarely have anything good to offer so I don't post.

That said, I have done a lot of research on our OEM subaru navigation units and wanted to consolidate the info here so that you can learn a bit on ways to update your maps without having to purchase the OEM ones from Subaru.

So, firstly the subaru OEM navigation systems in 2007 + Subarus are ALL Kenwood DV3200 based systems. These are actually made by DENSO, who happens to make systems in Toyotas, Saabs, Volvos and Landrovers along with lots of GM vehicles.

This is important because it is possible to use Toyota, Saab, Volvo and Land Rover Maps in your Subaru Navigation system.

Your navigation system "MAP" DVD actually consists of 2 sets of data. The 1st is the "System" and the second is the "Map" itself.

As far as I know, you can only update the "system" software using Subaru branded DVDs, but if all you want is the most up-to-date map data, then you can use certain other DENSO maps, many of which "might" be available to registered users over at

The way you get your Subaru Navigation system to load a non-subaru DENSO map is actually quite easy.

1) Eject your current Map Disc
2) Disconnect the battery and then reconnect it
3) Turn your car to the on position, but don't start it
4) Put in your Subaru branded DVD
5) Let the "System" load
6) Eject the Subaru branded DVD
7) Insert your non-subaru DENSO DVD
8) Wait - if you have inserted a compatible DVD, your Navigation will load the map data. Be patient.

If for some reason your system displays the error message "Load Map DVD" and you can't eject the DVD that you just burned, a "secret" way to force the DVD to eject is to press the "tilt" button on your navigation unit and wait until the face tilts all the way, then hold your finger on the upper right corner of the unit until the map dvd ejects.

I am not 100% certain what Denso maps work with what Subaru models specifcally. I can tell you that I have the Toyota Gen 5 V 11.1 (2012) maps running great on my 2009 WRX.

Please don't ask me for maps. You are going to have to find these on your own. They are out there for free if you look and you read my post. Enjoy.

Thank you for the great info! I couldn't find the Volvo maps so I went ahead and installed the Lexus Gen 5 Ver. 11.1 map disc.

I was confused about your Step 4 (Put in your Subaru branded DVD). I only have the 3 version 2.2 map discs, I don't have a system disc or anything that says it has the system on it.

I didn't want to disconnect the battery so I merely ejected my Subaru disc and inserted the Lexus disc and now the unit tells me I am running Ver. 11.1 maps! 

It could not have been more easy lol.

I'll have to keep poking around for the Volvo maps since I liked having the turn-by-turn directions

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