Is a Toyota Head-Up Display Worth It?

Many models of Toyota have an available head-up display as an option—but how desirable of a feature is it?
Written by Amber Reed
Reviewed by Hillary Kobayashi
background
A head-up display (HUD) in your Toyota projects crucial vehicle and navigation information directly in your field of vision. It’s certainly convenient and fancy, but is it really necessary? 
We live in a time of ever-accelerating technology and gadgetry, and one area where that’s particularly evident is the automotive industry. If you’ve been shopping for a new car lately, you’ve likely noticed that something called a “head-up display” is an available option and might even be a standard feature in some luxury models. 
Get to the bottom of this new car feature with this guide from
Jerry
, the
super app for car owners
. We’ll fill you in on what exactly a head-up display does and what models of Toyota have them. And while we’re at it, we’ll also give you a heads-up on how you can easily reduce your
Toyota insurance cost

Toyota head-up display: what is it and do you need it?

A head-up display (HUD) projects vital information directly onto your windshield and in your line of sight. They’re sometimes called heads-up displays, but the function is the same—to allow the driver to keep tabs on vital vehicle and navigation information without taking their eyes off the road. 
How does it work? Magic! Just kidding, just kidding. It’s science—although the lines between the two do seem
ever more blurred
these days. Toyota’s HUD works using a small hidden screen, a projector, and a series of mirrors and lenses. The end result? Key car stats are displayed as a hologram floating on the lower part of your windshield, just like a helpful, informative ghost. 
You can customize how much information you want to be displayed and options may vary among models. But common functions you can keep an eye on via the Toyota HUD include: 
  • Vehicle speed
  • Speed limit info
  • Navigation info
  • Driver assist data
  • Battery level (EV models)
  • Cruise control 
  • Vehicle status and warning messages
  • Infotainment options
You can also adjust the height, brightness, and angle of the HUD, and also turn it off if desired. The idea is that it will reduce
distracted driving
by helping the driver to keep their eyes on the road. 
MORE: Are Toyotas expensive to maintain?
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Which Toyota models have a head-up display (HUD)?

Head-up displays used to be a feature that you would only see in luxury makes, like
BMW
or
Mercedes-Benz
, but they’ve started to filter into the realm of the more everyday makes. 
Here are the models of Toyota that currently have a HUD as an option: 
Here’s the caveat: not only is a HUD not standard on any of these models, but they’re also only available on the highest trim levels. This means that if you really want a HUD in your Toyota, be prepared to take the plunge on one of the most opulent (and expensive) versions. 
For example, the top Capstone trim level of the Toyota Tundra has a HUD—and an MSRP of $75,245
Getting a HUD in a Camry will be far less expensive than that, though. The XLE V6 and XSE V6 have an MSRP of $35,820 and $36,370, respectively. But those are the highest two (out of thirteen) trim levels of Camry available.

Can you add a head-up display to a Toyota?

If you’re thinking about buying used or already have a Toyota that you’d like to keep for a while, you might be wondering if it’s possible to add a head-up display to a vehicle that didn't originally come with one. 
While it doesn’t appear that Toyota offers any options for installing an OEM HUD, there are a variety of aftermarket options out there. As Toyota’s HUD is simply a hidden screen with a projector, there are lots of different kits you can get that will perch on your dashboard and create the same effect. 
A recent article by Kelley Blue Book states that you can add an aftermarket HUD to just about any car. One of the pros of this is that you can then take it with you from vehicle to vehicle. 
On the downside, they can be expensive, and some of them can make your dashboard look cluttered. Additionally, they’ll need to be wired into your car’s electrical system, which could potentially void your warranty if you still have one. 
It doesn’t seem that Toyota is offering a HUD as an a la carte option right now, as it’s only available on certain models and trim levels. But who knows—if it continues to gain popularity, that might change! 
MORE: Recommended maintenance schedule for a Toyota
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How to use the Toyota head-up display

New tech can sometimes be a little intimidating, but have no fear! Toyota’s HUD is very user-friendly. The buttons that control the HUD interface are found on the steering wheel, which makes things nice and easy to access. 
Simply use the button to find the right menu option on your Toyota’s Multi-Information Display (MID). Generally, this will be Settings > HUD. From there, you can access and control several different features of your HUD: 
  • Brightness and Position: This allows you to make the information displayed brighter or dimmer. It also lets you move the display up or down on your windshield to your liking.
  • Rotation: This lets you rotate the display clockwise or counterclockwise a bit, if that’s your thing.
  • Driving Support: This is the meat and potatoes section. From here you can customize your display to show as much (or as little) information as you like. Battery level, speed, tachometer, turn-by-turn navigation, road sign detection, integrated compass, and so on.

Is a Toyota head-up display worth it? 

A head-up display is more than just a nifty tech feature—it also reduces distracted driving and increases safety on the road. But for a Toyota, getting a HUD will necessitate getting a higher trim level. This can not only get expensive, but may mean having to get some other features that you don’t care that much about. 
Many automotive groups are big fans of head-up displays for safety reasons—Kelley Blue Book strongly recommends that drivers consider them when making vehicle purchases. At the end of the day, it’s up to you. 
If you feel like the added safety and convenience are worth it, then odds are that a HUD will soon become a piece of tech that you never knew you needed so much.
And who knows what the future may bring? Once upon a time, driver assistance features like lane-departure assist and automatic emergency braking were a rarity, and now they’re practically standard features across the board. Only time will tell if the HUD technology will progress the same way!

How to save on Toyota insurance

A head-up display will keep you in the loop about a lot of vital information about your vehicle, but one thing that it can’t help you with is keeping an eye on your
car insurance
. But fortunately,
Jerry
has that covered! 
Signing up on the top-rated app is fast and free, and in a matter of seconds, Jerry finds you a customized selection of money-saving car insurance quotes to choose from. Once you’ve made your pick, Jerry handles the sign-up process for you—no phone calls or tedious paperwork needed. 
And that’s not the end of it—Jerry continues to monitor prices among more than 50 top insurance providers and will give you a heads-up if there’s a better deal available when it’s time to renew. 
On average, Jerry shoppers save more than $800 a year on their car insurance costs!
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