If You Have A Clunker, Soup It Up With Car Gadgets
ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:
Let's say your car isn't as cool as a new Tesla and you want to soup it up with gadgets to make it feel cooler or at least to make it feel like it's 2016 even if you're driving in the pre-power Windows era. What can you do? Well, blogger Emil Ivan has a few ideas for you. He is the managing editor of Cool Pile where he blogs about all kinds of gadgets. Emil Ivan, welcome to the program.
EMIL IVAN: Hi, guys. How are you?
SIEGEL: And I want you to tick through a few of the items here. We're not just talking about phone chargers. There are all kinds of interesting gadgets you can buy for your car.
IVAN: Yeah, well, actually there are a couple of very cool dash cams which can record your trips. They are very useful if you get into an accident or if something is happening in front of your car. For trip lovers, there's a couple of items that you can use in your car in order to make your life easier while in the world, like, for example, a road shower.
SIEGEL: Emil, explain that one to us 'cause I saw it. The water is - and it looks like a pretty small tank on top of your car. How much water do you put in it?
IVAN: Well, obviously, you wouldn't do that like at home like staying two hours in your bath with the water turned on. But it's enough for about two showers. It's fixed in the same way you would fix your skis when you go skiing. It heats from the sun, and it simply allows you to stop anywhere and just take a shower or use the heated water to wash your car or do anything else that requires hot water.
SIEGEL: You have a few gadgets on your site that you tell people about that are called HUD, heads-up display. These are projections that you see on the windshield.
IVAN: Those are very nice gadgets. You're right about it. They look like a little device that you put on your dashboard, and they project it on the screen. And they make it look virtual just like airplane pilot seats. You can still take a look at the road, see your directions. Let's say if it says turn right, you can see the actual arrows helping you drive around the city, and all this without taking your eyes from the road.
SIEGEL: There's a car gadget you have which to me it's a sort of a good news, bad news gadget.
SIEGEL: It's the easy quick jumper where instead of having jumper cables that connect from one battery to another, you connect from one lighter jack to another, which on the one hand is very simple on the other hand it says it takes five to 10 minutes to recharge that way.
IVAN: Well, this one, you see here, it came to me as a necessity. Like my wife - she's driving a car, and we were in Montreal in the middle of the winter. You know, Montreal is around minus 30, minus 40 degrees Celsius. So when we saw the issue, I was looking on the Internet to find something a lot more simpler, something to use for guys or girls who don't have a lot of technical knowledge. You simply plug it in, wait five to 10 minutes. You start your engine.
SIEGEL: Here's one - the handpresso auto espresso maker. Like several other devices, it actually uses the cup holders that are built into the cars as a natural place, I guess.
IVAN: Well, this is especially cool if you're a coffee lover. I am a coffee lover, and it has a specific form. You can keep it in the cup holder. Obviously, I wouldn't advise you to use it while you're driving. But...
SIEGEL: For that you'd probably need the heads-up display camera focused on the espresso maker to project it into the windshield so you could look straight ahead while making the espresso next to it as you are driving.
IVAN: Well, you would need that, and there's another gadget that you would need. And that's called the man with the four hands which was not invented yet so...
SIEGEL: (Laughter) Emil Ivan, thanks a lot for talking with us about great car gadgets.
IVAN: Thank you very much.
SIEGEL: Blogger Emil Ivan is the editor of Cool Pile. He blogs about gadgets of all sorts. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.