Here are Three Cheesy Car Gift Ideas to Avoid and What to Buy Instead

Do you have a car enthusiast in your life that you would like to get a Christmas gift for, but you haven’t the faintest clue as to what to get? Admittedly, car enthusiasts (like myself) can be picky when it comes to getting car-related gifts, so choosing something random at your local Autozone might not do.

In that case, to help you out a little, here are a few cheesy car gift ideas that you should probably avoid and three classy ones that you can consider instead.

Cheesy: Hanging car air fresheners

Little Tree car freshener hanging in a rearview mirror
Little Tree car freshener hanging in a rearview mirror | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

RELATED: Reasons to Avoid Car Air Fresheners Might Surprise You

We have all seen those Little Tree air fresheners at the local grocery store and you might think they are a good gift idea, but think again. In reality, while those air fresheners are popular, they are cheap and their scent doesn’t last very long. Why do you think so many drivers have to buy them so often? Avoid those types of air fresheners and get something a little more classy.

Classy: A better car freshener

A Drift car freshener
A Drift car freshener | Drift.co

If you want a classier air freshener for the gear head in your life, then these wooden fresheners from Drift can fit the bill. They come in a variety of scents, including pine, amber, and teak, and will spice up the scent in anyone’s car without looking overly cheap. Best of all, the scent lasts for up to eight months.

Cheesy: A cheap radar detector

The newly introduced Cobra iRadar Detection System, consisting of a state-of-the-art Cobra radar detector (top) and the Cobra iRadar App for Apples iPhone (bottom) is mounted in a 1967 Shelby Cobra GT500 CR, at the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada November 5, 2010. | Robyn BECK / AFP) (Photo by ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images

If your state allows for them, then you might be thinking about buying a cheap radar detector as a gift. However, Hot Cars reports that many cheap radar detectors on the market give false alerts or downright refuse to work, which can ironically lead to a speeding ticket. If you really want to buy a radar detector as a gift, then you’ll want to go with a more expensive Valentine 1 or Escort Passport Max. Just that they cost around $400.

Classy: An Insta360 camera

The Insta360 Go 2 Camera next to a quarter to show size
The Insta360 Go 2 Camera next to a quarter to show size | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

However, if you would rather spend less and stay classy, then you can buy your loved one an Insta360 camera instead. The Insta360 Go 2 is a tiny camera that magnetically sticks to a variety of mounts so you can get various angles and perspectives when filming. Check out Insta360.com for some upcoming Black Friday deals.

Cheesy: DIY window tinting kit

A DIY car window tint kit from Amazon.com
A DIY car window tint process | Amazon.com

Another gift idea is a DIY window tinting kit from sites like Amazon or from your local auto parts store. They only cost around $100 and look easy to install. In the right hands, these tinting kits can actually work well and provide a good window tint. However, in the wrong hands, the window tint process can be a nightmare and the result will be even worse.

Classy: A professional window tint job

David Dearholt of Perry Township, an installer at Elite Car Customs in Maidencreek Township, places the trimmed glass tint on the truck window during the final installation on Friday, August 10, 2018
David Dearholt of Perry Township, an installer at Elite Car Customs in Maidencreek Township, places the trimmed glass tint on the truck window during the final installation on Friday, August 10, 2018. | Harold Hoch Window Tinting

Instead of buying a cheap window tint kit, get your loved one (or friend) an actual tint job from a professional. There are plenty of specials to be had online (like a Group On) or a simple search on Yelp can link to a variety of shops in your area. Find a good one and see if you can get a gift card or perhaps schedule an estimate so that the car enthusiast in your life can get their car’s windows tinted professionally.

Gift ideas for car enthusiasts don’t have to tough

Finding the right gift for the car guy or girl in your life doesn’t have to be hard. Whether you want to spend $8 or $300, one of these aforementioned ideas is sure to work. Just do yourself a favor and stay away from the auto parts store. Most of the ideas you’ll find in there can be pretty cheesy.

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