Ryan from FortNine demonstrating the bright-green Helite Turtle 2 airbag vest
2 Wheels

The Simpler Motorcycle Airbag Jackets Might Be the Best

Apart from your helmet, one of the most important pieces of motorcycle gear is CE-certified armor. However, as vital as it is, an armored jacket isn’t necessarily on the cutting-edge of biker safety. That’s because you can now choose from a wide selection of motorcycle airbag jackets. But even though the latest ones offer some …

Fall foliage lines Route 16 at a deer crossing in Franklin County, Maine
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Do Deer Whistles on Cars Really Work?

Think that deer looks cute and cuddly? Think again. Hitting one can wreck your vehicle and seriously injure you and your passengers. Though you should always drive with caution in rural areas, deer’s unpredictable nature is still a big risk factor. Some drivers add deer whistles to their vehicles to try to keep these adorable …

A close-up of a red 2020 Ducati Panigale V4 S's dash with TFT display and a silver Ohlins steering damper
2 Wheels

Your Motorcycle Might Need a Steering Damper

Changing things like the handlebars and wheels on your motorcycle isn’t always just about aesthetics. As with aftermarket mirrors, some modifications are as much about safety and comfort as they are about looks. Especially when it comes to handling-related accessories. And if you’re trying to improve your bike’s handling, one common recommendation is fitting a …

A black Valentine V1 Gen2 radar detector with its Bluetooth and red directional arrows lit up
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Is Investing in a Radar Detector Worth It?

From new windshield wipers to extra power outlets, there are plenty of accessories available to make life easier for motorists. And if you’re planning a road trip, one common recommendation is a police radar detector. Anyone with a history of speeding tickets would likely consider it a must-have. But is it an accessory worth buying? …

RV instructor Freddie Heller teaches Washington Post travel writer Andrea Sachs about her rented RV Saturday, September 19, 2020, at a KOA campground in Fredericksburg, Virginia.
Marine & RVs

Is Buying an RV Security System Worth It?

Recreational vehicles are becoming increasingly popular, and many people are buying their first RV. As with all things, there are some pitfalls that new owners might run into with their camper. One such issue is security. Here’s a look at why buying an RV security system could be worth the money. Is a security system …

A parked black 2004 Range Rover Sport with tinted windows
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Is Your Car Windows’ Tinting Illegal?

Tinted windows are undeniably cool. We’ve all seen action movies and music videos filled with luxury vehicles whose darkened windows add enough panache to make us drool. But when it comes to car safety, dark window tinting isn’t always a good idea. Even if a Lamborghini is out of your price range, you can legally …

A close-up of a white 2015 Audi A5 Cabriolet's LED headlight
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Can HID and LED Headlights Damage Your Eyes?

Car headlights shine so brightly today in part because, as with many automotive accessories, new technologies are available. Instead of halogen bulbs, headlights now often feature HID bulbs or LEDs. However, while dim lights can be a safety hazard, so can blindingly-bright ones. But more than simply dazzling drivers, can HID and LED headlights cause …

The diagram of Michelin's electric reverse motorcycle motor patent
2 Wheels

Michelin’s Patent Could Give Any Motorcycle a Reverse Gear

From quickshifters to lighter wheels, there are plenty of accessories available to motorcycle riders. Some modifications focus on making the bike quicker. But others, like aftermarket mirrors, are about making riding easier, safer, and/or more comfortable. The latest patent from Michelin falls into that vein. But it’s not, as you might expect, some kind of …

BFGoodrich Off-Road Wiper blades on a rain-streaked gray-blue Jeep Wrangler
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Do Off-Roaders Need These New BFGoodrich Wiper Blades?

Even if your vehicle is off-road-ready from the factory, going off-pavement requires the requisite set of accessories. That means protective skid plates, snorkels for easier breathing and occasional water-crossing, and, depending on the destination, light bars. Plus, off-road-rated tires, of course. BFGoodrich could already help out with that last part. But the tire company recently …

A white JDM 2021 Honda Odyssey with Mugen parts
Crossover & Midsize

Mugen Makes the Honda Odyssey Look (and Stop) Sharp

As impressive as the 2021 Odyssey is, the Honda minivan still faces a criticism leveled at all minivans: styling. Hence why the 2021 model received a mild redesign meant to deliver a ‘macho’ look. But if that’s still not enough, famed Honda tuner Mugen has stepped up to the challenge. Mugen has an extensive history …

The black 2021 KTM 390 Adventure optional spoked wheels with blue and orange inner tubes
2 Wheels

Should You Give Your Off-Road Motorcycle Spoked Wheels?

Going off-roading on your motorcycle can be fun, provided you have the right gear. However, that doesn’t just mean getting the right helmet, jacket, boots, gloves, and so on. Your bike also has to be prepped for the off-pavement excursion. But besides installing a skid plate, an off-road motorcycle needs the right tires and wheels. …

The vortex generators on a white 2018 Honda Civic Type R
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Do Vortex Generators Actually Help Road Cars?

Car spoilers have a purpose besides being flashy accessories. Although they’re technically not wings, both they and spoilers use the air rushing around cars to reduce lift. However, they’re not the only aerodynamic aide available to road cars. Some models, like the Honda Civic Type R, are starting to feature vortex generators as well. But …

A low-angle shot of the 2020 Honda Civic Type R's wing
Tips, Tricks & Trends

A Car Spoiler Is Not the Same Thing as a Wing

Spoilers, whether factory equipment or aftermarket accessories are usually visual shorthand for a performance-oriented car. Or at least a vehicle pretending to be one. Given their shape, car spoilers are understandably often referred to as wings. However, although these terms are often used interchangeably, they’re not synonymous. Wings don’t help cars fly—they help them not …

A Citroen with its fog lights on drives on a foggy British roadway
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Do Fog Lights Really Help You See Through Fog?

Whether you plan on upgrading to LED headlights or sticking with halogens, your car’s lights are vital accessories.  But as bright as they’ve gotten in modern times, trying to drive through a foggy night can still leave you blinded. Given their name, you would expect fog lights to be the perfect solution. But do they …

The 2021 Genesis GV80's white-and-brown 2-spoke steering wheel
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Why Don’t More Cars Have 2-Spoke Steering Wheels?

Until a truly self-driving vehicle finally appears, cars will continue to need steering wheels. But just because cars need steering wheels doesn’t mean they all need the same one. That’s part of the reason why aftermarket wheels are available in the first place. And yet, for all the variety in wheel design, only a handful …

A Dynojet motorcycle quickshifter
2 Wheels

Does Your Motorcycle Need a Quickshifter?

While the number of available automatic and no-shifting motorcycles is slowly growing, most bikes still use manual transmissions. That means not only learning how to operate a clutch but also how to shift gears smoothly and quickly. One way to speed up shifts on a car is to install a short shifter. And while a …

Setting up the 2020 Porsche 911 Turbo S's launch control system
Tips, Tricks & Trends

What Does Launch Control Actually Do?

From more power to stickier tires to sportier and stiffer suspension, high-performance cars benefit from a variety of accessories, features, and tools. And nowadays, launch control is a common sight amongst such vehicles. Even a few motorcycles like the Ducati Panigale and Streetfighter offer it. But how does launch control benefit your car? And can …

A rider using the kickstarter on a 1967 Norton P11 motorcycle
2 Wheels

Does a Motorcycle Kickstarter Work Like an Electric Starter Motor?

If you plan on riding a classic motorcycle, you’ll naturally notice several differences compared to a modern bike. Carburetors instead of fuel injectors, for example, and fewer electronics. And depending on how old the motorcycle is, it may have a kickstarter instead of an electric starter. So, how does it work—and is it worth keeping …

A female motorcycle rider reflected in one of her Harley-Davidson mirrors
2 Wheels

Should You Change Your Motorcycle Mirrors?

New jackets and gloves aren’t the only accessories available for motorcyclists. Just like with cars, there are a variety of ways for you to modify your bike, from handlebars to heated grips. And a common modification is swapping out the standard motorcycle mirrors for some aftermarket ones. But is it a modification worth pursuing? Why …

A car power inverter can charge your phone, computer, TV, or any other low-power AC electrical device.
Tips, Tricks & Trends

The Top 4 Power Inverters for Your Car

Before buying your dream car, you probably pore over reviews, peruse specs, test-drive your favorites to find the model that gives you everything you want. Features — from engine size to trim level to USB ports — can make a car special. But not all features are enough, and sometimes you need a bit more. …

A cutaway ZF dual-mass engine flywheel
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Is a Lightweight Engine Flywheel a Worthwhile Upgrade?

Adding more power via something like a turbocharger is a common-enough idea. But some modifications, rather than increasing raw performance, are about tweaking a car’s character in subtler ways. You can install a short shifter, for example, or swap your transmission’s gear ratios. Or you can give your car a lighter engine flywheel, or a …

2018 Lamborghini Urus carbon-ceramic brakes
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Is Giving Your Car Carbon-Ceramic Brakes Worth It?

Your brake pads, like your rotors, aren’t just maintenance items. As with your tires, wheels, intake, and exhaust, you can swap them out for upgraded versions. And when it comes to high-performance cars, carbon-ceramic brakes are a common feature. But are these ceramic brakes a modification worth pursuing? What’s different about carbon-ceramic brakes? Although a …

2019 Tesla Model 3 interior with its large central touchscreen
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Why Are Automakers Replacing Buttons With Touchscreens?

Even some of the worst infotainment systems on the market have touchscreen displays. It’s rare, in fact, to find cars nowadays that lack them. Indeed, Tesla’s EVs are famous for having little-to-no physical controls. Instead, the majority of the vehicle’s functions, even its windshield wiper controls, are found on the touchscreen. However, not every car …

A black Dainese Pro-Armor motorcycle jacket
Tips, Tricks & Trends

You Need Motorcycle Armor in More Than Just Your Jacket

A good-fitting helmet is the bare minimum when it comes to motorcycle gear, especially safety-related gear. Naturally, not every rider needs every kind of gear. For example, if you only ride in moderate climates, you probably won’t need heated gear. However, wearing motorcycle armor is definitely a necessity. And it needs to be found elsewhere …

Black HRE aftermarket wheels on an orange Lamborghini
Tips, Tricks & Trends

When Are Aftermarket Wheels Worth It?

Changing up your wheels through the aftermarket is one of the most common vehicle modifications. But all too often these non-factory wheels end up being more trouble than they’re worth. However, that’s usually because people buy them for the wrong reasons. Done properly, aftermarket wheels can be beneficial. The best aftermarket wheels lower unsprung weight …

Riding a motorcycle through a winter snowstorm
Tips, Tricks & Trends

How Do You Keep Warm While Riding a Motorcycle?

Winter, or at least the onset of cold weather, usually spells the end of motorcycle season. But some continue to brave the icy landscape regardless, especially if there’s little-to-no snow. And even when spring comes, the chill lingers for some time. So, it’s crucial for motorcycle riders to have cold-weather gear and know how to …

The rear 3/4 view of a 2021 Indian Scout Bobber motorcycle's handlebars and gauge
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Is Changing Your Motorcycle Handlebars Worth It?

Maintenance isn’t the only thing you can do to your motorcycle outside of riding it. Like car owners, many riders customize and modify their bikes to suit their needs. Someone going off-roading, for example, will likely fit skid plates and crash bars. Those interested in touring will start looking into luggage racks. And so on. …

Two K&N cabin air filters
Tips, Tricks & Trends

You Need To Change Your Cabin Air Filter

Whether you’re preparing your car for winter or simply doing regular maintenance, air filters are rarely at the top of the list. And when they are, it’s usually the air filter in the engine. However, with relatively few exceptions, cars also have cabin air filters. And yours probably needs to be changed. What does your …

Ford F-150 Police Responder police pickup
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Counterfeit Car Parts Makers Impair Driver and Occupant Safety

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development says $509 billion annually is pirated in spare parts. This counterfeit problem affects all automakers big and small. Sadly, customers may think they are getting a factory authorized replacement part, but in fact, may instead be receiving a lookalike substandard part that was made as economically inexpensive as …

Ford Ranger Off-Roading in the desert shows one benefit of an all-wheel-drive powertrain
Tips, Tricks & Trends

Decked Decks out Pickup Truck Beds and More

You may have seen the cool advertisements for the Decked pickup truck bed accessory. They fit in most trucks like the Nissan Titan or Ford F-150. But sometimes this grain of aftermarket add-on can turn out to be cheesy. Are Decked drawers an organizer that is actually as cool as it looks? Or should we …

A diagram of Indian's heated and cooled motorcycle seat
2 Wheels

Indian’s Giving Its Motorcycles Heated and Cooled Seats

Whether it’s on pavement or going off-road, long motorcycle trips require a certain level of comfort. That’s why many touring and adventure bikes feature heated grips, for instance. But there is such a thing as too much heat. That’s why motorcycle jackets and gloves have vents and mesh. However, that doesn’t really work if you’re …

A white 2001 Oldsmobile Intrigue with a tacky body kit is parked at a car show.
Cars

5 Most Embarrassing Mods From the Early 2000s

It’s the early-2000s: Apple introduces the revolutionary iPod, boy bands own the airwaves, and the original The Fast and the Furious film brings underground import tuner culture to the mainstream. For the most part, the cultural phenomenon spurred by the massive success of The Fast and the Furious was a good thing—the automotive aftermarket exploded …