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This article was updated in September 2023 with new products and information.
Whether you are driving a brand-new vehicle or your ride’s new-car smell wore off long ago, adding a cool car accessory or three can go a long way toward making your car feel fresh and personalized. To achieve this, we’ve sourced these gadgets and gizmos to make your ride more fun to be in. Some are useful in vehicles of any age, while others add modern functionality to an older car. Better yet, these accessories make great gifts for a fellow car lover.
Our Top Picks for Car Accessories and Gadgets
The best part about these items is that they’re a simple click away on Amazon—something most of us use all the time. So do your ride a favor (or any other car lover in your life) and check out these cool car accessories—see if there’s one that’ll make your time behind the wheel even more enjoyable.
Wolfbox G840S Backup Camera
Welcome to the future. The Wolfbox G840S has it all and then some: a massive 12.0-inch display that doubles as a mirror, a high-quality camera that performs fantastically well both day and night, and an integrated dashcam built into the display for recording what’s going on in front of you as well. In fact, the Wolfbox came out on top in our backup camera test.
NOCO Portable Jump Starter
Portability is a key aspect when buying a jump starter, and it doesn’t get much more compact than the NOCO Boost Plus GB40. It’s very portable and boasts decent power, an override button, an easy interface, and two work lights. If you’re short on space and want to have a portable jump starter around, this is the one to get, as we found in our jump starter test.
Avid Power Cordless Portable Tire Inflator
The pistol-style AVID Power Cordless stood out in our test by stepping it up a notch without increasing the price much. It provides a secondary power option via your car’s 12V outlet, plus the package includes two of each kind of valve adapter. If we were shopping for a portable tire inflator to keep in our car, we’d have to pick this one.
Car Chap Lip Balm Holder
Know someone who always has a stick or two of lip balm on them at all times? Those little guys can be so tricky to keep track of, but this lip-balm holder (aptly named the Car Chap) erases that problem. Simply stick it on wherever is handy, and you’re good to go. Holds lip-balm tubes up to 3/4-inch wide.
Car Interior Dust Brush
Sometimes, dust on the inside of your car warrants a clean. You don’t want to be breathing that stuff in anyway. But what if you didn’t need to break out the Shop-Vac—which can be a pain. Solve that issue with this dust brush, which stores nicely in your glovebox when you don’t need it.
Car Seat Sun Shade Cover
Car seats, along with everything else, get scorching hot when sitting in a car under the hot sun. This car-seat cover protects the child’s throne, keeping it away from the rays of heat. The cover easily rolls up when not in use, so storage isn’t a problem. You know what is a problem? A baby with a roasted backside after being placed in a hot car seat. With this, you can avoid that, thankfully.
Belkin Phone Mount
While you should never let a phone distract you from driving, a well-placed phone holder can make it much easier to play music or operate the navigation app from behind the wheel. There are hundreds of mounts to choose from, but we picked this Belkin model because it performed very well in our test.
Govee LED Car Lights
Interior LED lights seem to be all the rage these days, and this kit from Govee is one of the top-rated choices on Amazon. By using the Govee Home app, you can unlock up to 16 million different colors and even utilize Music mode—where the colors bounce to the beat of your tunes. Simply install with adhesive strips, plug into the 12V socket, and you’re good to go.
Universal GPS Head-Up Display
Speedometer doesn’t work? Or maybe you’ve upgraded with some larger wheels? Keep an eye on your GPS-provided speed with this head-up display. But that’s not all. The HUD also can display acceleration numbers, battery voltage, and trip time. Just plug it into the 12-volt socket, and you’re all set.
Drop Stop Car Seat Gap Filler
If you’ve ever lost something in the abyss between your front seats and the center console—and who hasn’t?—you’ve likely thought, “Why doesn’t someone do something about this?” The folks at Drop Stop have. The Seat Gap Filler’s name says exactly what it does. This inventive product promises to prevent many future hand contortions—as well as the occasional skinned knuckle—due to lost change, pens, phones, keys, or anything else prone to falling into the no man’s land between the seat and center console.
14-Inch Screen Magnifier
Do your kiddos want to watch a movie in the back seat? Or maybe you want to catch up on your favorite show while you enjoy a meal in the McDonald’s parking lot. This screen magnifier is designed to take the image from your phone’s screen and magnify it by three or four times.
SuperOne 150W Power Inverter
For a light-duty power inverter that does a little bit of everything, the SuperOne 150W is our pick. Featuring two USB, one AC, and two cigarette lighter–style ports, there’s room for a host of different gadgets. It’s rated for 150 watts, which might not sound like a whole lot but is enough for most electronic devices necessary for a pleasant family road trip. Because of its versatility, we loved it in our power inverters test.
Fire Missiles Cigarette Lighter
If you’re feeling particularly James Bond-y, add this cigarette lighter to your ride to make your passengers raise an eyebrow. It’s a fully functioning cigarette lighter and features a rubber gasket for a tight fit. And thanks to anodized aluminum construction, it feels legit.
Ampper Exterior LED Light Kit
For many drivers, a vehicle’s outward appearance is just as important as its performance. Others want additional exterior lighting to help their car be seen at night. For either of those needs, we recommend exterior LED lights like these from Ampper. Available in packs of two, four, or six, these waterproof lights can be placed anywhere on a vehicle and are designed for all weather conditions. They’re not intended as driving lights but do work well as puddle lights. They come in blue, green, red, white, and yellow. The lights must be wired to your vehicle’s electrical system, so you should see a knowledgeable installer unless you’re sure you can handle the job yourself.
Car Mirror Swinging Duck
If you need a little road-trip buddy, look no further—this li’l swinging duck will keep you company. Just strap it around your rearview mirror and watch him sway along with the bumps in the road.
Emergency Keychain Car Escape Tool
It’s always a good idea to keep an escape tool in your vehicle—you never know what might happen. This particular device features a dependable window breaker and seatbelt cutter in case of an emergency. Better yet, it fits right on your keychain.
LED Cup Holder Lights
These rechargeable LED cup holder lights can transform any ordinary water bottle into a jug of neon-green nuclear waste in a matter of seconds. The discs are charged via USB cable and have up to eight hours of battery life while emitting one of seven colors.
Depstech Wireless Endoscope
Losing something important in one of your car’s many dark nooks or crannies can turn a 10-minute repair job into a frustrating hour-long affair. Not only will this wireless endoscope from Depstech help you locate that dropped 10-millimeter socket, it can also help retrieve it—as long as you buy the accessories kit. For the more mechanically involved, the scope can also be used for inspecting cylinder walls or hidden electrical connections. This device works wirelessly and projects the image from its tiny camera onto your cellphone screen.
The Tile Mate is a handy way of keeping track of your keys or other belongings. You can find them via Bluetooth if close enough or through the Tile app if farther away. With a convenient spot to include on a key ring, it’s a nice safeguard if you ever lose them.
Comsoon Bluetooth Auxiliary Jack Adapter
If you have a car with an auxiliary jack but no Bluetooth audio streaming, this affordable adapter can transform your music-listening experience. Simply charge it (or connect it to your car’s power outlet), plug it into your aux port, and pair your phone. Not only is the adapter good for high-quality audio streaming, it can also be used for phone calls using its built-in microphone. Who needs a fancy, expensive, Bluetooth-enabled radio?
Car Trash Can
Those little compartments alongside your vehicle’s doors fill up with trash way too fast. A solution? Pick up this leakproof car trash can. It can strap on either headrests or your center console and can double as storage or a cooler when not in trash mode.
Car Registration & Insurance Card Holder
Keep all of your vehicle’s important documents organized with this handy holder that fits right in your glovebox. With clear pockets galore, you can fit and display insurance cards, registration, and other important info without embarrassingly digging through paperwork.
Car Seat Headrest Hooks
These headrest hooks are a simple, genius way to keep your grocery bags or purse easily within reach. Just hook around the legs of a headrest—these bad boys are rated to hold up to 13 pounds each. Better yet, you get four of them in a pack.
This trunk organizer is excellent for drivers who like to keep stuff in their car. With multiple storage compartments and a tie-down system, the collapsible organizer will keep your groceries, tools, and more secure and contained. It’ll fit in your trunk, or your front seat if you want to keep your stuff within reach.
Solar-Powered LED Wheel Lights
If you do a lot of night driving, these might be a cool thing to try. The solar-powered LED lights screw onto your valve stems and illuminate in your choice of four colors. They’re built to be waterproof and will automatically turn on once wheel speeds reach 15.5 mph. We’re a bit skeptical on how these actually look, but for $15, it’s worth a shot!
Car Cleaning Gel
We all know how tricky it is to get dust and crumbs out of your vents and interior cracks. Don’t worry about bringing out the vacuum—this handy cleaning gel will do the trick. It’s designed to goop up contaminants while keeping your hands from getting sticky.
We all want USB ports in our cars now, particularly to charge our phones and power other devices. But getting those ports can be tricky and ugly—this little gizmo changes that. It’s designed to fit in your cigarette lighter port and stay flush, which looks cleaner while also providing two extra USB ports. Win-win.
Want to show your polite displeasure with the guy behind you riding your bumper? Channel your inner gladiator and display the thumbs-down. The light uses a suction cup and batteries to stick onto your back window, while the one-button remote control can mount to your front vents. If you’re feeling friendly, you can also flip the light around and display a thumbs-up.
Car Steering Wheel Tray
If you find yourself working and eating in your car quite often, consider this handy steering wheel tray. It works with any round steering wheel and features space for your laptop or a container of grub. It also has a cupholder on the side. The tray is perfect for mobile workers and foodies on the go.
Ozonics Micro3 Car Odor Eliminator
This air purifier works differently than most. It doesn’t cover up odors like conventional air fresheners—the device actually releases ozone molecules to attack odors and improve the air quality. Toss it into your 12-volt socket and let it go to work removing those odors.
Blind spots can be very dangerous, so stick some blind-spot mirrors on to expand your visibility. This is especially useful for folks who have difficulty performing head checks or vehicles with large blind spots. Just stick them on the top outside corners of both mirrors and you’re good to go.
Amazon Echo Auto Gen 2
It seems like you can connect to Alexa with just about anything these days, so why not add her to your car? The Echo Auto Gen 2 connects to your phone via the Alexa app and plays from your vehicle’s speakers via Bluetooth or auxiliary input. From there, you can stream music and podcasts, make calls, check the weather, pay for gas, and more.
Mando Push-Button Start Cover
The Mandalorian‘s iconic helmet has become instantly recognizable from the show, so why not add it to your ride? Simply adhere the alloy-steel ring around your vehicle’s push-to-start button, choose your style of Mando mask, and close it over the button. Now every time you want to start up your ride, it’s like flipping a switch on a starfighter.
Car Change Organizer
Change is slowly becoming obsolete, but it’s still out there, and hearing it rattle around your cupholders can be quite annoying. Getting this change organizer can help prevent that—it fits in most storage areas in a center console and makes it easy to pull out a few coins if the need arises.
Cargo Liner for Fold-Down Seats
If you have a dog that sheds, you know how exhausting it can be vacuuming the hairs out of your seats. Just avoid that hassle with this cargo liner, which features a waterproof laminate layer on top and a nonslip material on bottom. It’s designed to work with fold-down seats and around center consoles.
Ancel BD310 Corded/Bluetooth OBD-II Scanner
The Ancel BD310 is our choice as the Best OBD-II Scanner for Home Use. We loved the scanner’s happy medium between corded and Bluetooth capabilities and felt the app’s interface was excellent. It’s a unique scanner, as you can use it with just the corded interface or connect it via Bluetooth and use the free app to access more data, diagnostic resources, and performance testing. The BD310 was quick to connect and display codes, and it provided many of the perks of expensive scanners while staying affordable.
Dashboard Anti-Slip Pad
Dashboards aren’t usually very grippy, but they can be a convenient place to put stuff temporarily—frustrating, right? This silicone anti-slip pad helps with that. Measuring just under 11 by six inches in size, it’s a nice spot to hold your phone or glasses without letting them fall off the dash.
Digital Tire Pressure Gauge
Keeping an eye on tire pressure is very important, especially if your car doesn’t do so on its own. This digital gauge from AstroAI features easy-to-read numbers, a nozzle light, and an ergonomic design. The range on the gauge is impressive—with a threshold of zero to 150 psi. Keep it in your glovebox for the next road trip!
Shynerk Rear-Facing Car-Seat Mirror
Hauling precious cargo? Baby on board? This nifty mirror lets you peek at your kiddo in their rear-facing infant seat without straining your neck. The convex, shatterproof-glass mirror mounts easily on the rear-seat headrest and swivels so you can watch over the little one from the rearview mirror. It’s simple, clever, and inexpensive.
Electric Fans for Rear Seat
We all know how hot back seats can get, and these electric fans are designed to combat that. Secured to a headrest via adjustable claws, the fans are powered by your vehicle’s 12V socket. The heads can be moved 360 degrees for easy aiming at your sweaty passengers, who might not be able to wait for the A/C to kick in.
Headrest Screen Holder
If you have a larger screen to display to the kiddos in the back seat, this headrest screen holder makes it easy. The built-in ballhead allows for 360-degree rotation, and the cradle fits any devices up to 10 inches—iPad road-trippers, rejoice!
Breathable Seat Covers
Sitting down on a baking hot seat will make you sweat like a stuck pig, and these breathable seat covers look to minimize that. By providing space between you and the heat, it can help you get comfortable quickly. They install easily; just a few straps around the back of your seat and you’re good to go.
Don’t have an aux port or cassette player in your car? Don’t worry, you can still listen to whatever music you like. Plug this Bluetooth transmitter into your 12V socket, tune your radio to the desired frequency, connect your phone, and boom—your music, your way. You can even make calls with this one, and it features two USB ports to charge a device like your phone.
American Flag Sunshade
Getting into a hot car after it’s been sitting in the sun all day is awful—that steering wheel can feel like it’s fresh out of the oven. A sunshade is a great way to avoid this, like this one from Autoamerics; they have a plethora of American flag–style choices. Use the handy chart in the image gallery to see which size fits your vehicle.
Claw Mark Decals
These claw mark decals might not be for everyone, but it’s a cheap, easy way to add some pop to your ride’s exterior. They’re designed to be waterproof and reflective, and these particular claw marks have been cut down the middle to stick on around a headlight easily. If red ain’t your style, there are a few other colors to choose from.
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