Worst car gifts of all time?
At this time of year newspaper columns are filled with suggestions for the ultimate, best-ever Christmas presents.
And for the serious automotive enthusiast there are some gifts that could certainly get them all revved up.
Take, for example, the keys to a brand new performance driving machine from BMW or Porsche, or a set of Brabus rims wrapped in Pirelli P-Zero rubber.
Or, how about the gift of better driving — a certificate for a performance driving event from somebody like Allen Berg Racing Schools or a refresher driver course from the AMA.
But what about the worst car gifts of all time? The kind that would send an auto enthusiast into an uncontrolled skid?
Here are some tongue-in-cheek worst car gifts ever:
-Fuzzy steering wheel covers, or for that matter, any steering wheel cover. If a driver doesn’t want to grip a cold steering wheel, then get them a good pair of gloves.
-A green pine tree air freshener. Yes, it’s Christmas, that doesn’t mean a driver needs a pine tree air freshener to remind them of the season. If a hanging air freshener is a must, how about the latest Ed Hardy design?
-Customized licence plate frames. Simpler is always better, and if you really want to draw attention to the licence plate, get a personalized plate from the registry office. Just try to make sure what you want to say makes sense.
-Fuzzy dice. These likely should be in the same category as the pine tree air freshener, as they hang from the rear view mirror. In fact, just about anything that hangs from the mirror could be considered the worst car gift.
-A cheap set of tools. Nothing is more infuriating than using tools of inferior quality, and the set is likely to languish on a dusty shelf in the garage.
-Anything that plugs into an accessory power outlet (otherwise known as a cigarette lighter). A fan? Seriously, roll down a window.
-A car trunk organizer. Sounds like a great idea, but these universal fit devices usually end up not fitting, and anything stored in them is quickly strewn about the car trunk, nuf’ said.
-Eight-ball air valve caps. They might look cool on an old Schwinn balloon tire bicycle, but not on a tuned Volkswagen.
-“Ferrari Parking Only Sign–All Others Will Be Towed,” or any other fill-in-the-blank-parking only sign meant to hang in the family garage. If a Ferrari actually parks there, a sign isn’t necessary to explain.
-Barefoot gas pedal cover, in chrome and black. These were funny at one time, like back in the 1970s, but in a modern vehicle they would look completely out of place. Times have changed, and the barefoot gas pedal for $14.99 has morphed into a set of machined billet aluminum covers for $64.99. Still not a great gift idea.
-The Calvin and Hobbes sticker series. Any of the Calvin stickers, where a snide Calvin peers over his shoulder as he pees on the name of a vehicle manufacturer. That’s just rude.
-Speaking of rude, one that defies any comment is the testicle shaped trailer-hitch receiver cover, often seen hanging from the back of a large pickup truck.
-Vinyl multipurpose sun visor organizer. Nothing says tacky like a visor organizer with a place for a pen, note-pad, sunglasses and 10 CDs.
-Plastic spinner wheel covers. These hubcaps continue to spin after the vehicle has stopped. There are only a few vehicles that look as though they’re moving fast standing still, and a mid-1990s Cavalier with plastic spinner wheel covers is not one of them.
That’s the list — there are definitely more.
On the flip side, I’m sure any of the above would probably work as an ideal gag Christmas gift for the automotive enthusiast.