It’s the most wonderful time of the year. And if you know someone who like cars, it’s even better. It makes ticking off your gift list easier, as there is a plethora of choices for those who love driving, and even more for those who just want to get through their daily commute.
Here’s a wish list of items ranging from practical to whimsical, all guaranteed to spin the wheels of your car-loving friends or family. Maybe there’s even a treat on the list for you, too.
An illuminating nod to the past
If you’ve got someone on your list who’s into classic Detroit iron, their eyes will surely light up when they see this desk accessory. Carfurniture.com is offering lamps made from real valve covers off old Ford, General Motors, Chrysler and even International V8s, with bases made from a harmonic balancer. The lamps are covered in clear coat to preserve the authentic patina, making them look as if they were just pulled from a junk yard. Prices start at US$599.
Wrap up in winter warmth
Nothing feels better than heated seats on a cold winter drive. But if you don’t have those in your current vehicle, you can get the next best thing with a 12-volt heated car blanket. Just plug it in to your 12V socket (that’s the cigarette lighter in your really old car) and feel its warmth envelop you. Blankets are available from various sources; this plaid version is from Canadian Tire and sells for $64.99.
Put your foot in it
To some, these might just look like fancy socks. To a gearhead, they represent the colours of their favourite car or race team. Heel Tread offers a wide array of the soft footwear patterned to represent cars such as the Volkswagen GTI, the BMW E30, the Williams FW18 and many others – along with some famous movie and TV cars, too. Separately, they run just US$15 a pair, or you can get gift packs of three pairs or more.
Get your head around a dash cam
In today’s world, a dash cam is invaluable for providing evidence in a crash; it’s also great for posting bad driving videos to the internet. But most just face forward; this one, the Waylens Secure360 4G, offers a 360-degree view to cover the entire space around – and inside – your vehicle, complete with infrared LEDs for low-light conditions. It will also send alerts to your phone if it senses someone in the vicinity after you’ve parked, and automatically uploads both video and audio to a cloud service. Sells for $521.67 at Amazon.ca.
A bedroom with zoom
What kid wouldn’t love their own sports car to fall asleep in? There is a wide variety of car-shaped beds for young folk offered at a range of prices, starting at a few hundred dollars. This one, the Cirillo Modern Coupe Twin Car Bed from Wayfair.ca, is definitely on the pricier side at $3,199.99, but it does come with Corvette styling, accent lighting and even racing seat backs for playtime during the day.
Stick your neck out for your car friends
For those who like to play loose with the company dress code, try one of these auto-themed ties from Cyberoptix.com. Based in Detroit (for more automotive cred), the company offers screen-printed neckties and bow ties with blueprint-style drawings of engines, depictions of racing circuits, and even some with the Packard logo. They also offer matching pocket squares and silk scarves. Priced in the US$40 range, depending on the style, these ties are a stylish way to tell those around the boardroom table that you’d rather be driving.
Retro racing for your wrist
Autodromo is famous for making racing-themed watches, and their latest offers a stunning retro design appealing even to those not into cars. The Intereuropa is named after an Italian race series held from 1949 to 1964, and features a 39-millimetre polished steel case, three-dimensional numbering and a calf-leather strap. Available with multilayered dials in silver-blue, cream and grey, the manual-wind watch also comes with a poster and a wooden presentation box. Now you just need the vintage car. Available for US$1,250.
A different type of car audio
If you can’t buy a new Porsche 911, you can still give someone a piece of one. The Porsche Design 911 Bluetooth Speaker incorporates twin 911 GT3 tailpipes in this compact, portable 60-watt speaker system. Not only can you connect your phone or tablet through Bluetooth, but it can also connect with other Porsche speakers for even greater volume. The battery lasts up to 24 hours – the same amount of time it takes to complete the Le Mans endurance race. Coincidence? Find it at porschedesign.ca for $799.
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