Dads usually keep up with what they need when it comes to their vehicles, but Father's Day is one of those times where you can get him something he might not expect. While there are plenty of possibilities from all the gizmos we've covered in the column, this list might offer a gem that dad definitely wouldn't have expected.
TomTom VIA 1605 TM
- Available at: Best Buy, Future Shop
This is the first portable navigation unit with a six-inch screen that TomTom has made and could be an ideal choice for the dad who drives a bigger vehicle. This is naturally not for a compact, mid-sized or even luxury car, but a sizable SUV, pickup truck or even an RV would be good choices.
It has maps for Canada, the United States and Mexico, plus free map and traffic updates for life. The EasyPort mount it's attached to is meant to make it easier to place this on a windshield or dash, and it can more easily be oriented because of the flip-screen feature.
Otherwise, the experience is a lot like you would expect with a TomTom unit, only bigger because of the extra screen size.
Meguiars Heavy Duty Headlight Restoration Kit
- Available at: Canadian Tire
For the dad whose vehicle truly is one of his babies, this headlight kit is designed to bring back the clarity from headlights that have become oxidized or yellowed over time. While Canadian Tire offers a few other products that do the same thing, this is the heavy-duty one that includes a sanding pad and finishing discs (1000 and 3000 Grit), plus a buffing pad that can attach to a conventional drill.
Then there's the restoration liquids and cleaners that help keep the gunk off. Based on the instructions, it's a few steps to the finish line, but the results should be great. And despite the focus on headlights, this could also work on taillights, motorcycle screens and boat windows as well.
Silverlit Interactive Bluetooth Remote Control Enzo Ferrari Car
- Available at: Apple Store
A remote control car modelled after a Ferrari is one way to cater to the little boy in any dad. The car has built-in Bluetooth that works with a free accompanying app for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch that is designed to look exactly like a Ferrari's dashboard, complete with lights, gauges and even the horn.
Controlling the car is based on the gesture controls and accelerometer of the iOS device. Tilt the phone forward to accelerate, back to stop and reverse and left and right to steer and make turns. The car runs on four AA batteries, and has a top speed of about 12 km/h. Its realistic sounds also come off the app and not the car itself.
Oakley Dispatch Sunglasses
- Available at: ca.oakley.com, various retailers
Whether he drives a nice car or rumbles around in a motorcycle, the Oakley Dispatch sunglasses are a good choice. Not too outlandish, definitely not gaudy, yet elegant and sophisticated enough to give him the impression that he's the man when in the driver's seat.
You get the usual UV protection, a slight curvature plus a lightweight frame that looks to be pretty durable, too. Apparently, they're also designed to fit just right every time, thanks to the lenses being in precise optical alignment, though the overall size of these shades leans a bit on the bigger side, so smaller faces might not look as good in them.