Are you looking for the perfect gift for the car enthusiast in your life? Check out this buying guide for some great ideas in a wide price range for any car lover. From GPS to mechanic tool sets, you’ll find just what you need at a price you can afford.
The GoPoint BT1 iPhone Connector ($150 from GoPoint Technology) is a handy tool that connects your iOS or Android device to a vehicle’s diagnostic port via wireless Bluetooth connectivity. With the mobile and in-car devices hooked up to the GoPoint app, your car enthusiast can have a virtual mechanic at his side. The connector allows you to keep track of everything from the fuel economy to diagnoses for the check engine light, and it can usually point out when you do and don’t need to call a mechanic right away.
For assistance on the road, an all-encompassing GPS system like the Garmin nuvi 3597LMTHD ($330 from Amazon) has a wealth of features your car enthusiast will love. Its 5.0” multi-touch display enables pinch and zoom to quickly get a closer look at anything pulled up onscreen as well as voice-activated navigation. The device is loaded with detailed maps of North America and is backed by free lifetime map updates so you can be sure he will always have the most up-to-date maps, points of interest and navigation information. And because the device receives traffic updates up to every 30 seconds, it is up to 10 times faster than most other traffic systems.
The Pioneer AppRadio ($290 from Amazon) is the first car stereo that has been designed specifically to run mobile apps. The in-dash 6.1” touchscreen display allows you to access compatible iPhone 4, 4S, 5 and Android apps, in categories such as Driver Assist, Music, Navigation, Utility, Productivity, Video and Social Networking, including Pandora, iHeartAuto, Top Headlines, Rdio, Maps, MIXTRAX, CarBrowser and many more. Other features include an AM/FM tuner with RDS, rear view camera input, Pioneer EQ audio tuning and a pair of RCA preamp outputs for system expansion.
Does the car enthusiast in your life like to get his hands dirty and work on his car himself? If so, a full 154 piece mechanic tool set ($110 from Sears) from Craftsman may be just the thing. The tool selection is comprehensive enough to handle just about any job, and they all come in a convenient briefcase that’s small enough to easily fit in the trunk of any car. What’s more, Craftsman offers this set at a decent price along with a lifetime guarantee.
If you’re looking for something less expensive for a smaller budget or stocking stuffer, the Accutire Talking Air Gauge ($15 from TireRack.com) has a large, easy-to-read LCD display but will also use its voice function to announce the tire pressure reading in either English or Spanish. If he wants to know his last tire reading, the RECALL button pulls it right up. It also has an ergonomic handle for easy gripping.
A subscription to Motor Trend Magazine ($10 from Amazon) also makes for a great stocking stuffer. This monthly magazine is jam-packed with car reviews, alluring sports car photos, features on the present and future of the auto industry and other content that could be both entertaining and valuable to any car enthusiast.
These are just a few of the many options you have for the car enthusiast on your gift list, so keep these in mind and get shopping!
Carolyn Heneghan is a freelance writer, journalist and editor who loves to research and tell a great story. She currently serves clients in a variety of industries and is always looking for a new and exciting project to take on. She also loves cooking, reading, watching movies and cooking shows and cross-stitching.
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