Do you know someone who is a genuine car nut? Maybe they love watching professional racing, maybe they love to tinker under the hood, or maybe they simply love to keep their vehicle looking its very best.
Some readers may think of their fathers, but it could be anyone in your life–parent, sibling, child or friend. Car lovers can be any age or gender, and come from all walks of life. When it comes time to buy this person a gift–for their birthday, a holiday, or any occasion–there are all sorts of unique, automotive-inspired options to choose from.
We’ve compiled a list of 11 gift ideas that should please anyone who loves cars. From apparel to home decor and office supplies, there’s something here for everyone. At the very least, let this list be inspiration to help you find the perfect gift for your gearhead.
1. Car Seat Buckle Belt
This belt holds up your clothing but is designed to look like the kind that secures you safely in your vehicle. It’s great for making a fashion statement as well as displaying your automotive love. A quick Google search brings up a variety of styles from multiple vendors. If you want the buckle to feature a specific vehicle’s emblem, take a look at this belt on ebay.
2. Speedometer Cufflinks/Jewelry
These cufflinks allow a car afficionado to show their appreciation even while dressed in their formal attire. You can find a wide variety online, and you may want to begin your search here. Jewelry options for female car nuts are a little harder to find, but here are a few examples that apply the speedometer theme to earrings and a pendant.
3. Encyclopedia of Classic Cars
An encyclopedia is the perfect gift for anyone who can’t get enough information and statistics. The pictured encyclopedia covers classic cars from 1945-2000 and contains 1,800 photos, but it is on the expensive side. This older book by different authors provides similar coverage at a cheaper price. For the best bargain, consider this slimmer tome that covers vehicles from 1945-1985.
4. Speedometer Wall Clock
Here’s another speedometer-themed item that can be displayed in your recipient’s home or office. The clock shown is sold by a British company that creates clocks modeled off the speedometers and dashboard gauges of classic automobiles; this one is based on the 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO. For options that are a little cheaper and less elaborate, take a look at the custom designs you can find on Zazzle and CafePress.
5. Car-Themed Throw Pillows
These stylish decorative pillows would be perfect for displaying in the living room, den, or even inside a vehicle. They are made and sold by an Etsy user who will customize the embroidery with the vehicle type, model year, and the owner’s name if desired. You can find more classic car-inspired pillows on websites like Redbubble.
6. Automotive Cleaning/Detailing
Any true car lover probably takes great pride in their car’s appearance, so a care kit is a no-brainer. Meguiar’s is a good brand for the price, and Walmart carries an exclusive 8-piece bucket kit that includes most of the basic necessities. You could also upgrade to the 12-piece Complete Care Kit if you’re willing to pay a little more.
7. Car Wash Coupon/Gift Card
What if your gift recipient loves to have a clean car but isn’t the type who loves to wash it themselves? Gifts cards, coupons or memberships to local car washes are just the solution. If you need suggestions on where to buy, read our blog post on the best car washes in Rochester to learn what businesses are in your area and what services they offer.
8. Gearshift Paperweight
Sitting at a desk can be tough when all you want to do is go out for a drive. Luckily, you can appeal to a car lover’s need for speed with this paperweight shaped like the gearshift of a 6-speed manual transmission. With this item, some part of their mind can feel like they’re at the wheel even though they’re stuck at work.
9. Disc Brake Coaster Set
Here’s an inventive way to show your automotive enthusiasm and at the same time protect your tables from rings left by glasses. The coasters in this set are made to look just like automobile disc brakes, and as an added bonus, the storage rack looks like the brake caliper! This set is nice for the price, but here is an even nicer one if you’re willing to pay more.
10. Car-Themed Cell Phone Case
Since we’re all so attached to our smartphones these days, a cell phone cover would make a nice gift for anyone who wants to show their love to the world. Autocase sells a number of iPhone cases in multiples styles and featuring the logos of many classic sports cars. Alternatively, check out the work by this Redbubble user, which you can have printed on a variety of smartphone, iPad and laptop covers.
11. Scale Model Car
Finally, why not gift your car fanatic a smaller version of their favorite vehicle to admire? Take for example this 1:18 scale 2014 Corvette Stingray convertible from RepliCarz. Unfortunately, highly-detailed models can be very expensive, so you’ll have to work within your budget. Start by searching for the particular vehicle you want and narrow your options from there.
We decided to focus on car-themed items in this list rather than accessories for use in the car because we already covered that topic in another post. Having said that, these gadgets could also serve as easy, useful gifts, so look at our list of must-have car accessories if you want to go that route and need some inspiration.
In any case, stay tuned to our blog this summer for more tips, advice, and suggestions for fun roads trips to take with or without your family. Also, don’t forget to visit our main page for all your car buying and maintenance needs.