There are a myriad of new car gadgets to improve your journey and make it safer. The coolness factor in these items should not be ruled out. In an ideal world, a device will save you money too- one example would be preventing you forking out after an accident. For some additional advice check out our last article on Car Must Haves.
Tips on Choosing your New Gadget
It is not always the best idea in the world to take the manufacturers marketing content as gospel. Reading a few reviews is a good start. We recommend reading at least one of the 5-star reviews and then reading at least one of the lowest star reviews.
Even relying on on-line reviews isn’t enough. An improved plan of attack is ask your friends and relatives which devices they swear by. Beware of anything too gimmicky, work out if you will still want to use this product in twelve months’ time.
Brand names may be important – have you heard of them? It’s nice to know that the company has been around awhile so they may care enough to fix any issues you encounter, or at least produce a good enough product hoping to avoid having to fix fewer issues. Sometimes buying a brand means that you are paying too much–so use your best judgment.
HUDs are a technology inspired by jet fighters, where it’s important to have the most crucial information closest to your view so you don’t have to look away to find it. It broadcasts a see-through picture of vital details over the view of your surroundings.
In 2021 many new cars come fitted with HUD as a standard feature but for those that don’t there are aftermarket models which can be affixed to the dashboard. It can tell you when your car gets too hot or if you seriously need a recharge. Some also come with a warning light.
When buying a HUD check whether it is compatible with Apple or Android. Being able to read clearly is a plus. With some HUDs you have to pay for the accompanying app so it is always best to check. If one with the free app has all the functions you require why pay.
Some gadgets designed to make your drive safer by removing blind spots or monitor tire pressure will work with your smart phone via blue tooth, but these can drain your battery.
Less Vital Gadgets
There are other devices out there and a few seem a bit wacky. Why for instance would you need to buy a step to reach the roof of your vehicle? If you are extremely short perhaps, or if you install a roof storage system. It’s plausible but think twice before adding this to the long list of things you drive around with in your trunk.
Do you really need a dashcam with a front and rear facing camera? Many suppliers believe so. Rideshare drivers love these because you want proof of what passengers do or say in your car in case, they complain about you. However, most people won’t need this…unless you get rear ended. It really comes in handy when you get hit from behind.
There are also devices which can inform you where the speed cameras are in your neighbourhood. Some people use an app on their smart phone. Either way, they rely on someone in your community has taken the time to update the location of the traps. Many people find it distracting though.
Alternately, you can buy a radar detection device so you can be told whether there is a speed trap up ahead. Which again will save you money if you often explore roads you have no prior knowledge of. A cheap one of these will run you under $100 dollars and will go off any time you pass a grocery store with automatic doors. The result is usually paranoia which causes you to stop speeding.
Strip lighting can be controlled via your mobile phone, possibly only useful if you happen to travel at night. It can be synced to your music device.
A subwoofer can be fitted underneath your seats if you are a music fan. A subwoofer is a speaker which produces frequencies at low bass.
Opinion is divided on whether an in-car fridge is a bit too decadent, though if you are going on a long road trip it could well be a necessity; how else will you store the ice cream and cold drinks?