Classic Car Kick Panel Speakers Buyer's Guide
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Classic Car Kick Panel Speakers Buyer's Guide


This classic car kick panel speakers buyer's guide will help you determine if speaker kick panels are right for your vehicle and if so, which kick panel speakers are the right ones to meet your budget and listening requirements. We base this information on actual customer feedback. We are not a media company that is trying to send you to another site. We are an online authorized dealer for the brands we carry and have the experience to help you find the right product for your vehicle.

Speaker Kick Panels for Classic Cars

Made from ABS plastic, speaker kick panels look like the original kick panels in your vehicle, but they have a protrusion and a cutout that allows you to add speakers. The benefit of adding kick panel speakers is volume, clarity, and acoustics. When you look at a new car today, the speakers are usually located in the door panel. The car manufacturers do this because it provides a better listening environment. The issue with classic cars is that the door panels are flat and the interior was not designed to accommodate the extra protrusion in the door panel. Also, the design of the door itself limits the speaker's depth. You typically have two options. You can cut metal out, but that ruins the integrity of the vehicle. Or, you have to find special speakers that will not only fit but not interfere with the window as it rolls up and down.

Stadard Kick Panel Speakers

We offer standard kick panel speakers that come with Custom Autosound or Pioneer speakers pre-installed. The Custom Autosound kick panel speakers are the cost option unless you want them empty. The Pioneer speakers are what they are. Read below to find get our opinion.

Custom Autosound Kick Panel Speakers

Custom Autosound kick panel speakers get the job done. But, they are not ideal if you are looking for the best bang for your buck with sound quality. If your goal is to add 6.5" speakers in the kick panels while spending as little as possible, the Custom Autosound kick panel speakers are a great option. If you want speakers that will sound better, we have several different upgrade options that use a better speaker. The Custom Autosound speakers will sound better with an amplifier. But, if you are spending the money on an amplifier, you are better off buying kick panels with better speakers installed. The extra cost isn't that much.

Pioneer Kick Panel Speakers

Unless you are a die-hard, "I love everything Pioneer," person, we wouldn't buy the speaker kick panels with the Pioneer speakers. For roughly the same price you can get the Kicker, Rockford Fosgate, JBL, or Infinity speakers and they will sound much better.

Premium Kick Panel Speakers

We offer the largest selection of premium kick panel speakers for classic cars. We are an online authorized dealer for the best car audio brands in the world, and we have found several different speaker options that fit in the panels themselves, handle more power, and deliver better sound quality. With these upgraded speakers, there are three different tiers. We have the speakers that will sound good when powered off of the radio, but sound that much better when powered with an amplifier. We have speakers that will work with your radio, but we recommend an amplifier. Finally, we have some high-end options that need an amplifier.

Kick Panel Speakers Designed to Work Well off of Your Radio

Please note, while all these speakers will work when powered directly off of your radio, they will sound night-and-day better if you power them with an amplifier.

  • Kicker CS
  • Infinity Reference
  • JBL Stage
  • Rockford Fosgate Punch

Kick Panel Speakers that Should Be Powered by An Amplifier

The classic car kick panel speakers that should be powered by an amplifier will still work and sound good when powered directly off of your radio, but an amplifier will maximize performance and deliver superior sound quality. These speakers are not "expensive" per se, but these speakers handle more power and have better materials than the standard, "Work well off of your radio" speakers.

  • Kicker KS

The Kicker KS speakers are the only ones within this category, primarily because there is a less expensive model, the CS Series, that sounds better when powered off of your radio. The Kicker KS speakers have a heavier cone and a silk dome tweeter. These speakers will sound fine if you don't have an amplifier. But, we recommend the Kicker CS speakers for these applications because they have a brighter, PEI dome tweeter and a lighter weight cone.

Kick Panel Speakers Where an Amplifier Required

Technically, these high end "amplifier needed" speakers will work with your radio, but it is a situation where you are spending money for high end speakers. If you don't spend the money for an amplifier, you are wasting money on the speakers. Without an amplifier in these situations, you are better off buying a less expensive speaker.

  • Hertz Cento
  • Audison Prima

Empty Classic Car Kick Panel Speakers

We sell kick panel speakers that come empty in addition to the pre-loaded options. With the empty kick panel speakers, you or your installer will need to source the speakers and mount them yourself.

Shallow Mounting Depth

When deciding on empty kick panel speakers, it is important to note the mounting depth. The kick panel speakers will not fit with speakers that are deeper than 1-7/8". Most 6.5" speakers are too deep to work with these kick panels. It varies by application, but for most vehicles, you can't buy any pair of 6.5" speakers off of the shelf. If you want high-end speakers, most of the speakers are too deep. There are few 6.5" speakers available with the shallow mounting depth that the kick panel speakers allow.

Basket Diameter

The other thing to keep in mind is the basket diameter. While Custom Autosound markets these as 6.5" speakers, there are many that work much better with a 5.25" speaker and a standard 6.5" with a 165mm diameter will not fit. Now, most "good" installers or trim shops can cut or modify the panels (or your vehicle) to make anything work, but keep this in mind. There is a reason that we offer kick panels with premium options. These are speakers that we have found to work.

Standard Paintable, Black Finish

The classic car speaker kick panels, come in a textured, paintable, black finish, except for the Volkswagen ones. Black is by far the most popular interior color for classic cars. If you have or will be installing a black interior, you don't need to worry. You can install the kick panels, as-is. If you have a different color interior, you can paint the kick panels to match your vehicle's interior.

Summary

Adding kick panel speakers to your classic car is a no-brainer if you are looking for the best sound quality, and if you are not restoring your vehicle to 100% stock. Speaker kick panels provide a better listening environment with speakers, that play louder, handle more power, deliver more mid-bass. Adding an amplifier to power your kick panel speakers is never a bad idea and you can do it with our premium options. If you are deciding on the Hertz Cento or the Audison Prima kick panel speakers, spend the money on the amplifier to get the most out of your investment. If you have any further questions, we are available Monday through Friday from 8a to 5p PST. You can call us at 888-789-7297 or email support@classiccarstereos.com.

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