Whether you’re a summer vacationer, a weekend getaway go-getter or simply use your car for work, a little technology goes a long way. Your next awesome vacation is just around the bend, but your vehicle might not be as wired into today’s top tech picks as it should be.
Between practical devices, luxury additions and universal must-have gadgets, you have plenty of toys to choose from. We’re here to help you construct the perfect checklist of 2019’s top gadgets—covering today’s leading options from start to finish.
Our Top Picks
Nobody can prepare for a car accident. Still, having a utility gadget on hand can keep you safe. The Ztylus Stinger was made to be handy during an emergency. Whether your car windows won’t open or your door is jammed, this nifty tool can break you out. It can even shatter a dashboard. Incorporating a slim backside blade, the Stinger can slice through most, if not all, seat belts—no matter how stuck they are.
The high-grade emergency escape tool fits well in every vehicle, as it’s both portable and safe to stop in glove compartments. It might be razor sharp, but its safety mechanisms will keep your interior exactly how it should be when you’re not in danger: unscathed.
The Ztylus Stinger only breaks tempered glass, which is a consideration to make before choosing this nifty tool. It isn’t designed to break laminated glass or windshields—which might be a deal-breaker for some. Regardless, it’s made our list due to its wealth of benefits which outweigh its negatives. It’s one of the most accessible safety tools you can buy—and it’s incredibly cheap at a mere $15. Charged by a dual USB port charger, the Ztylus Stinger’s internal design prevents overheating, circuit overload and over-charging. The 12-to-24-volt escape tool has a power output of five volts.
Even in today's age, worn out tires affect everyone. Still, there’s a way to circumnavigate worn away tread and day-to-day wear-and-tear. Ditch the pressure gauge, and check out the Fobo Tire Plus system. Utilizing a Bluetooth system capable of relaying tire health diagnostics to your smartphone, Fobo can let you know when your tire pressure is getting low. It’ll even set you up with a tire care program in an easy to follow tutorial—a tutorial you can set up in under five minutes.
The Fobo Tires Plus onboard monitoring system works well with most vehicles due to its core software design elements. Capable of monitoring up to 600 kPA (87 psi) and giving in-depth warnings about even subtle tire misalignment indicators, the Fobo system is a top pick among consumers every month. Despite being ninth on our list, we feel it’s one of the top purchases you should make due to its inherent safety enhancements. Whether you want to optimize your tire performance, improve your car’s handling or simply want safer travels—Fobo Tires Plus is a solid investment.
Who doesn’t forget their keys at home? Between rushing to work, dropping the kids off at school and running errands, it’s all too easy to leave other accessories behind, too. In the age of Bluetooth, however, there is an answer. Tile Mate is a nifty Bluetooth locater system which slides onto your keychain. It’ll help you track your keys via mobile app—so you’ll be less likely to lose sight of your valuable.
Tile Mate is so effective it’s considered to be one of the most popular Bluetooth trackers on today’s market. It’s also compatible with a number of infotainment systems, keeping you connected wherever you go.
The Scosche USB charger provides something which many modern cars lack, today, in terms of accessibility and charging options: duo-charge accessibility. If you’re like most drivers, you can’t help but collect gadgets for your car. Eventually, you’ll need extra space to charge the extra devices.
The extra ports help, but the Scosche charger’s best aspects are its low-profile look, instant accessibility and—the best part—a low price. If you’re a budget-conscious shopper, the Scosche USB Charger should be one of your first tech picks.
Whether you drive a big truck or a car with a clunky turning radius, pulling into carports, garages and busy venues can get rough. There is, however, a solution. Today’s parking assistants help people maximize space, prevent people from tapping their bumpers and make tight squeezes.
Thus, we present the Park-Zone PZ-1600 for only $22. It’s simple, cheap and effective. It’ll let you know when you’re getting too close to other cars, and it won’t bug out like other leading devices which have hidden lifespans due to flimsy materials.
Today, Anker is one of the auto world’s leading provider of electronics. Well-known for their leisurely gadgets, the brand has also pulled off several exciting tech options for long-term drivers. Now, they’ve created a solution for drivers who can’t seem to keep a full phone charge.
Anker’s in-car charger isn’t like other chargers—it’s high-powered, offers an incredibly long life and even comes with an 18-month warranty. It’s also compatible with nearly every phone on the current market. If you want to roll with a full battery bar, definitely invest in this low-cost product.
At the end of the day, safety devices aren’t necessarily to keep you from causing an accident—but to keep accidents away from you. Still, crashes happen. Fender benders, bumps and dings can cost you a fair bit of money, in the long run—but the PAPAGO Car Dash camera can pull you away from hefty fines. It’s high-res, too, so you’ll can zoom in on any problem areas.
As another safety tool on our list, the IPOW Car Safety Hammer Escape Tool is another top contender for the year’s most affordable, and effective, life-saving gadgets. You may never need it, but it’s still good to have. Housing hardened steel points capable of smashing through safety glass, the IPOW tool can save you from even dire situations. It can slice through seatbelt material, too, assuring you’re never left without multidirectional functionality fit for any disaster.
The Escort Max 360 is one of the most accurate radar detectors on the market. As a safe driving tool, it keeps drivers alert to their area’s speed limits by notifying them of nearby patrol vehicles. The Escort Max 360 is powerful, boasting dual antennas, smartphone compatibility and full network access to be aware of speedsters in your area. If there’s an emergency nearby, Escort Max will make you aware of it. It’s one of the safer gadgets you can keep onboard, and—while a little pricey—still beats competing gadgets of similar caliber.
We won’t lie: Our number-one gadget for 2019 has to be the NOCO Genius Boost Plus GB70. All drivers need to keep a jump starter kit onboard. Most auto experts not only promote it—but press upon it. When you’re driving around town, you might break down. It’s just a fact of life. Chances are, nobody will be around to give you a jumpstart.
As such, the NOCO Genius Boost Plus GB70 is your best friend. It’s a battery source capable of allowing drivers to start their vehicles as soon as it dies. Simply hook the Boost Plus’s clamps to the battery, kickstart it and go. The NOCO Genius Boost Plus GB70 is well-equipped to service most emergency situations due to its reliability in terms of always providing power. It’s designed with a built-in flashlight, too, making it a reliable onboard utility tool as well.
Before You Buy, Double Check Your Tech
That wraps up our segment on 2019’s finest gadgets, but we want to give readers something a little extra, in terms of choosing the right tech for their cars. Before you make a purchasing decision, consider the technology your vehicle already has. If you've purchased a vehicle newer than 2016, chances are its included onboard safety software may make you reconsider several options.
While the NOCO Genius Boost Plus GB70 is a great safety addition to most vehicles, some other gadgets—like a dash cam—may not be the best economical investment you could make if your car is already outfitted with sensory detection and monitoring.
In most cases, it’s still a good idea to pick up a safety gadget before entertainment-related technology. The choice is yours, of course, depending on your lifestyle, driving frequency, current onboard technology and other considerations. Of the options above, we definitely suggest vying for a tire pressure monitoring system over most alternative purchases. Have fun with your new tech, and stay safe out there.