Consumer Reports: Gift Guide for Car Lovers

‘Tis the season for finding that perfect gift for the car lover in your life. Consumer Reports has some excellent gift suggestions for the car enthusiast that might already have everything. Depending on how much you want to spend, there are gift ideas for everyone on your list.

Consumer Reports says to give the gift of music!

There are an overwhelming amount of streaming and music options out there these days. If your gift recipient spends a lot of time in the car, Consumer Reports says, why not give the gift of music? These days, many vehicles have Apple CarPlay or Android Auto integrated. Offering a subscription for something like Pandora, Spotify, or Apple Music is a solid gift.

Depending on how much you want to spend, Pandora Plus is only $5 a month to remove ads, while the premium option is $10 a month. Spotify premium is $10 a month and removes ads between songs. Right now, Apple Music is free for three months and $9.99 after that. Music to your ears!

A jump-starter battery pack is a convenient gift (don’t forget the jumper cables!)

Consumer Reports says that a portable jump starter and jumper cables are a great gift
Consumer Reports says that a portable jump starter and jumper cables are a great gift | Helen H. Richardson/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Depending on how old your recipient’s battery is, a jump-starter could come in handy. A micro-sized battery pack is enough to give a car a jump but can also power phones or other items in a pinch. You have to keep the battery pack occasionally charged for it to be beneficial, but that’s easy enough. The ones on this list come with a USB port and flashlight. These are always a good idea to have on hand, especially if you road trip a lot.

Don’t forget the jumper cables, either. These are always a good idea to have in the trunk. If you know how to use a set, you can also assist other drivers in need.

A trie pressure guage is a good stocking stuffer

Now that everyone is back on the road, a tire pressure gauge is a good gift idea. Checking your tires is a habit people should get into and check every month or so, especially if you drive a lot. This can also remind you to replace your tires if you see early wear and tear. Consumer Reports suggests the Accutire MS-4400B Tire pressure gauge, only $10.99. If your recipient is an enthusiast, the Intercomp 360060 Tire pressure gauge is a bit pricier but well worth the price.

Cordless Tire Inflator

A cordless tire inflator is super convenient, especially for those who might not have convenient parking. Dragging a large machine around or going to a suitable gas station can be inconvenient. Inflators like this also come with an adaptor that you can use with things like basketball, footballs, and bicycle tires. This one can be a bit pricier but is worth it for the time saved. The DeWalt 20V Max Inflator doesn’t come with a battery for $129 but has good reviews from Consumer Reports.

Consumer Reports suggests a driving school


What Happens When Your Electric Vehicle Runs out of Charge?

This is a pricier gift, but a very cool one. Depending on where you are located, there are a variety of driving schools out there. The Richard Petty Driving Experience is actually on sale right now, making it a pretty good deal. You can either book the experience directly or get a gift certificate if you aren’t sure which experience is right. You can get a ride-along on a real NASCAR track or some instructional driving in a NASCAR vehicle. Pretty cool experience!

There’s also the Mario Andretti Racing Experience. This offers ride-along sessions in IndyCars or solo drives with instructors. Get in a full-size IndyCar and take it around the track. Depending on how comfortable you are, there are beginner and advanced courses available.

Skip Barber Racing School is one of the longest-running schools in the country. Skip Barber offers one and two days schools for starters, plus more advanced classes and a teen introductory course.