If you want to ride in style, there are a number of cool car accessories on the market that can make your travels more stylish, more convenient, and even safer. Here are a few techy and trendy possibilities for you to consider.
Cool Car Lighting. Enhancing a car’s exterior lighting can have both aesthetic and safety benefits. LED, Xenon and improved halogen headlamps are becoming more prevalent in the auto industry. Many upgraded headlights cover more of the road and are much brighter than traditional bulbs. The clean, bright white light produced by LEDs conveys high-tech style. And, replacing standard halogen headlamps with brighter bulbs can allow for greater nighttime visibility on dark roadways. Do some homework on the differences between the bulbs before making your decision. Also, be sure to check with your car’s manufacturer to see what type of aftermarket headlights are compatible with your particular vehicle.
Car Wi-Fi Hotspots. If you plan on hitting the road with your family this summer, then an aftermarket Wi-Fi installation may be a worthy investment. Phones, laptops, and tablet devices can connect to the router simultaneously. Wi-Fi paired with tablets can replace backseat entertainment units, and often constitutes as a cheaper alternative. Children can stream videos, download apps, and play games, while (non-driving) parents can send emails, or respond to any business or personal emergencies. Pricing for car Wi-Fi units can range from about $150 to $350, and the data plans necessary to provide Internet coverage are flexible. Tip: Keep a USB charger in your vehicle console as an essential cool car accessory. USBs can plug in through a cigarette lighter (or auxiliary inputs if available), and they can keep your devices active when running all those power-hungry Wi-Fi applications.
Car Wrap Graphics. While most car wraps on the market are advertisements (effective ones at that), there’s always a place for custom personal decals. Certain “boxier” car models lend themselves particularly well to aftermarket wraps, and they can really set a car apart from the pack. The portfolio of a car wrap designer/producer is important to consider when shopping around. Whether you’re looking for something graphic, metallic, textured, racy or whimsical — there are wraps on the market for just about every look you can imagine. High quality vinyl car wraps are removable when properly applied, which helps to assuage any fear of commitment.
Car Backup Cameras. Backup cameras are very handy and a relatively cost-effective accessory for virtually any car model. Depending on whether your vehicle has a dashboard display already installed, you may need to buy a monitor in tandem with the camera. Prices for camera/monitor systems vary, though many can be purchased for between $50 and $100, plus installation if you don’t go the DIY route. Tip: Most camera models are proofed for “normal” weather conditions, so if you live in more extreme weather conditions you may want to consider researching this feature more extensively.
Whether you’re planning a new car purchase, or souping up your existing vehicle, always check with the manufacturer to make sure that any aftermarket work does not void your warranty. And if you’re going to finance a new car purchase, consider USEA’s AutoPayPlus biweekly loan payment plan — your savings may more than pay for the cool car accessory you are considering.
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