Posted: November 12, 2020
Well, it's nearly Christmas already! What a year 2020 has been - our hope is that you, your family and your friends have kept safe and well during this challenging year.
Now the nights have drawn in if you are one of the many shoppers getting organised and on the hunt for gift ideas for the car lover in your life - we have you covered! Whether your special someone is a motor enthusiast, petrolhead, sports car owner or motorsport fan, here is some gift inspiration from the CATDT team. Below is our list of 39 of the best car gift ideas we have come across - many of which we have now added to our own wish list! Looking for something fun, something serious, or you just don't know where to start? Here's a great selection to give you some inspiration.
Use the links below to skip to a section.
You've got car mail! A budget-friendly gift that keeps on giving. Choose from a wide range of magazines that will fulfil your car lover's need for speed.
All petrolheads understand how important tyres are to vehicle handling, not to forget fuel economy. This is why the Highway Code suggests you check your tyre pressures weekly. This handy digital tyre pressure gauge provides instant and clearly lit readings - a practical stocking filler. Partner this with a digital air compressor pump.
Get your feet race ready with these Scooby socks from Heel Tread. Based on Colin McRae's Subaru Impreza 555 livery, these socks use seamless toe knitting to create a sock without any stitches. Not a Scooby fan? These guys have virtually every marque covered in their full collection.
For collectors, kids and big kids alike. Pick an iconic diecast model for a bit of racing nostalgia, like this AC Shelby Cobra Coupe Sears - Thompson Le Mans 1965. There are lots to choose from.SHOP NOW
With older cars, listening to your favourite Spotify playlist whilst on the road was previously not an option. Now streaming over Bluetooth is no longer a luxury only afforded by more modern car owners. Give the gift of music with this car Bluetooth receiver.
A sleek leaping jaguar bottle opener that also doubles as a keyring.SHOP NOW
A definitive guide for all drivers wishing to develop their skills and safety to an advanced level. The IAM, ROSPA and the DVSA all base their advanced training around the guidance in this book. Recommended by CAT as essential reading for the motoring enthusiast.
This premium bodywork collection is an ideal gift for anyone who likes to keep their pride and joy looking its best.
You're no true petrolhead if you're not a Steve McQueen fan! This retro print was designed to honour one of the greatest (if not THE greatest) racing films of all time. A perfect addition to any garage or home office. Available in a range of sizes.
For when you can't afford the real thing! The Tamiya scale car model kits are highly regarded for their ease of construction and quality. A great way to while away the hours over Christmas. There is a large range to choose from, whether it's a Mercedes Benz 300SL or an F1 McLaren Honda MP4-30 that takes your fancy, there is something for every car and motorsport fan.SHOP NOW
Perfect for anyone who enjoys cars and wine, albeit not at the same time.SHOP NOW
A unique insight into the secretive, technical world of F1 car design, written by F1's infamous Adrian Newey OBE. If you travel a lot, there is also an Audiobook version which can be listened to in car.
Take your pick from an impressive collection of automotive and motorsport books. We couldn't resist the 50 Greatest Bond Cars by Ben Robinson. Who doesn't love 007?!SHOP NOW
With such a wide range of Motoring cufflinks, these subtle accessories make a great stocking filler.SHOP NOW
Enjoy your favourite tipple chilled with official Porsche ice! A stocking filler your Porsche obsessed loved one is guaranteed not to have.
Perfect for the motorsport enthusiast who can't get through a track day without a cuppa!SHOP NOW
You'll be onto a winner with some tickets to the hottest new attraction for motorsport fans. The new Silverstone Experience includes an impressive display of iconic racing cars and bikes, as well as an interactive tech lab the kids will love!
Well known in the motorsport community, the friendly Merlin Motorsport team are THE go-to experts for performance parts and racewear. From exhausts to clutch parts to HANS devices they have any track day or racing driver covered.
Over time the elements can take their toll on your car trim causing it to become cracked or faded. The Gtechniq trim restorer is a highly regarded solution that restores the exterior trim back to tip-top condition and protects it for up to 2 years. Just the job for someone who takes pride in looking after their car.
Based at Silverstone, the home of British motorsport, Grand Prix Racewear has been supplying the best race and kartwear for over 30 years. If you have a budding racer to buy for, a voucher will help them get kitted out either instore or online.
For the aficionado who appreciates the beauty of the marvellous motor car. Artist and fellow car lover Ian Cook combined his two loves to create beautiful works of art painted with cars, yes cars! Not a paintbrush in sight, Ian uses a combination of remote-controlled cars and car tyres to create his tributes to great racing cars like this 1994 BTCC Alfa Romeo 155 TS.
Whether you class yourself as a car lover or not, tyre pressure is critical to the safety of your car on the road. In addition, for any track day goer, tyre pressure is also an important factor in getting the maximum enjoyment out of the day. For easy pressure setting, this rapid digital air compressor makes selecting the required pressure easy.
For the petrolhead who spends hours scrolling through car pictures on Instagram, treat them to a print they can admire in their own home. Professional Automotive Photographer Rich Pearce has a range of stunning prints to choose from and also offers automotive photo shoots - why not turn your car into a piece of art?SHOP NOW
Every car has it's own nuances and quirks. Capture its unique character for the petrolhead in your life by commissioning a custom digital illustration, hand-drawn by Kelly at Poppins & Co. Created from a series of photographs, incorporating the vehicle's individual heritage, the artwork is giclée printed on archival quality fine art papers. These unique and completely bespoke vehicle portraits are a great present idea for any classic car, performance car or bike owner.SHOP NOW
For someone that spends a lot of time on the road, a dash camera is fast becoming a must-have car gadget. This budget-friendly option includes GPS, parking mode and night vision.
When was the last time you paid serious attention to a car alarm going off? That's exactly why car tracking devices are becoming increasingly popular amongst drivers who want to keep a close eye on their pride and joy. The CarLock real-time car tracker syncs to an app in the driver's phone alerting them when the vehicle is moved, the engine starts or if the device is removed. For those car owners generous enough to lend their car to their children, the device also detects signs of harsh driving (spies on your kids).SHOP NOW
The perfect present for someone who appreciates the beauty of racing cars.
Become a Le Mans racing legend with this exclusive Scalextric set. Great for both kids and big kids wanting to compete in an epic endurance race within the comfort of their own home.
An essential piece of cake for any track enthusiast.SHOP NOW
A limited-edition print by automotive artist Nicholas Watts. Capturing Bentley's 2001 return to the 24hr Le Mans. Signed by the artist and racing drivers: Eric van de Poele, Andy Wallace and Butch Leitzinger.SHOP NOW
Performance-driven design in a trainer! The iconic motorsport shoe brand, Piloti, has adapted their racing shoe technology for everyday driving and wear. Check out their full range of designs for men and women.
Make their year with a piece of racing history. Take your pick from an impressive collection of Motorsport Memorabilia such as these original Ferrari Autographs by Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello.SHOP NOW
With knowledge comes speed! The VBOX Sport meter allows drivers to instantly analyse and improve their performance on track.SHOP NOW
An action-packed day ripping a Subaru Impreza around actual forest stages, which includes the 'ride of a lifetime'. The perfect gift for any Carlos Sainz or Colin McRae fan.
Essential kit for any Track day lover or Racing driver to capture the action on circuit.SHOP NOW
Inspired by the vintage dashboards found in the classic sports cars of the 50s and 60s, this retro timepiece is reminiscent of the 1963 Aston Martin DP215 Grand Touring Competition Prototype! Perfect for a lover of classic racing cars.
The perfect introduction to CAT's unique training style. A place with 5 other enthusiasts provides a full days experience. Our car clubs have been enjoyed by hundreds of individuals from numerous car clubs and forums. Modelled on attendance at track days, the itinerary is an advanced driving course giving an introduction into performance driving for road or track. Attendees benefit from 1 hour 40 minutes driving time across the day with their dedicated instructor.
Read more about the Car Club day here. Alternatively, you can get in touch with Jo or Lynne to organise your Car Club Gift Pack.
Of course, we couldn't create a gift for car lovers without including the best one of all! Make this Christmas extra special. All drivers with a passion for the road, track or race will benefit from our unrivalled driver training at our unique venue - UTAC's Millbrook Proving Ground. The best driving gift your money can buy. Choose between a Driving Gift Voucher that can be used towards the course of the recipient's choosing or a bespoke Driving Gift Course pack. Find out more here or get in touch with Jo or Lynne and discuss what options best suit the car lover in your life in a format that suits your budget.
We trust this gift guide has provided some inspiration. Please get in touch to recommend any car gift ideas you think we should include. Happy shopping!
"Cat Driver Training - September 2021 If you want to understand and explore the dynamics of your car then this is the team to help you whatever your level of knowledge. Personally I learnt many things about the dynamics and capabilities of the Porsche 911. Things that had not been explained to me in such detail even on Porsche factory tours and track events. The level of instruction out on the handing circuits and tracks is of the highest standard and brings to life the theory discussed in the classroom. My driving skills were taken to the next level and I will continue to work with CAT to further develop them. The facilities available at Millbrook are outstanding and it is a privilege to be able to access them via CAT Driver Training."
"Do you think you know it all? Well set up, well briefed and spendidly delivered. This training covered technical aspects of driving skills and then followed (and backed) those up with practical exercises. The learning was continuous and developmental. Whether it was simply understanding what your car could do (or what you might be able to make it do) or what you could do, there was a whole range of skills, techniques and aids that would enhance anyone's understanding of motoring. Whether it was how ABS could be triggered (or not), understeer/oversteer, trial braking, dynamic forces, on-limit driving; you name it, this course covered it. Delivered by people who clearly knew what they were talking about, but in a friendly, clear and accommodating style. I learned something from every session."
"The best decision I ever made! I have trained with CAT Driver Training twice now & looking forward to coming back in the future. I trust in their expertise & there is always something new to learn, a habit to be explored & an exhilarating experience that pushes me to my limit & builds confidence in myself & the car. The knowledge, experience, understanding, patience, compassion & professionalism of the team are just some of the qualities that make them unique & I highly recommend them."
"Performance Driver Track Day Course I participated in the course arranged by Porsche Club GB and very happy to give 5 stars all round. The team has put a huge amount of thought and effort into making the facilities and training Covid-secure, which is indicative of their professionalism. I found the whole day both fascinating and a lot of fun, in briefings, on the various driving segments, and chatting with the team and other participants. I was genuinely in awe of how much Colin moved my theoretical and practical driving on, and what he got me to get the car to do in the space of one day - always building confidence, encouraging me to explore my limits, while not pushing me beyond them. Can't wait to return!"
"I have had a reasonable degree of driving training over the years as am ex police officer and advanced police driver. I took the performance driver driver training to learn about track driving, and found it excellent. My instructor was Paul who was fantastic. The training built up during the day and I learnt so much about the capabilities of my own car and although I was nervous about using my own car realised afterwards it was the best thing for me to do. The instruction was extremely informative from an engineering perspective coupled with driving, friendly and tailored to your individual needs and abilities. At no time was I encouraged or pushed to do anything I wasn’t comfortable with. It was extremely professional throughout. I would thoroughly recommend this to anyone whatever your standard of driving."
"Truly exceptional In my experience, driving instruction has generally consisted of being repeatedly told that you are 'doing it wrong' accordingly to some unknown standard or principle that you had hoped to learn about by taking said instruction. Then there is Colin. It is not that common to find an individual who genuinely understands both people and engineering. It is incredibly rare to find one who can actively apply both to deliver a sustained behavioural change. Colin adapts his teaching style to the way you learn. For me, he lead with the WHY of the learning point, grounded in physics and engineering. We'd then put it in to practice, often doing several variants of an excercise to explore how the car reacts to differing inputs, providing valuable context for what good feels like and reinforcing the learning point. Each point built on the previous ones, layering up and coming together in to a whole, one far greater than the sum of it's parts. Subtle changes to huge effect. I was concerned on the day that the learnings would rapidly fade, but I have found that because Colin has taught me an understanding the lessons have persisted, even if I do still need some more practice (48 laps of the Silverstone GP circuit last Thursday definitely helped!). Add to this the fact that Colin is great company and an absolute pleasure to spend time with, and you have one of the most positive learning experiences I've ever known. Truly exceptional. I could not recommend more highly. Thank you!"
"Superb day with calm knowledgable and professional guidance from Paul. Thank you Paul. The course is so well structured consistently building ability and knowledge in complete safety. I fully recommend anyone wishing to increase their knowledge, confidence and experience to attend."
"Far better than any track day you can imagine! There is a massive difference between a typical driver experience or track day events and CAT driver training. The main difference is that you drive your own car to the full extent of it's capabilities, and your own, while being given expert one to one tuition by brilliant trainers Colin and Paul, who come from a Motorsport and auto engineering background. Their combined domain knowledge of engineering and competitive Motorsport allows them to explain the physics of why the car behaves as it does and how you can exploit the cars characteristics for maximum performance., in a safe fun environment. The frankly brilliant experience on the track is matched by the quality hospitality hosted by Jo, and classroom training, which prepares you for what you will experience on the next stage. These stages include such delights as the ring, where you will drive with no hands on the wheel at 100MPH, providing you with a clear understanding of the fact the car finds its own balance , and my personal favourite the alpine stage, with hairpins a plenty and 'character building' drops and rock faces. I have to admit to being slightly 'corner shy' before the training, however after some brilliant coaching from Collin urging me to 'stay on the gas, stay on the gas!' I am now far more confident and safe in the twisty stuff!"
"I don’t want to make this review too long and detailed, so I think the best way to summarise it is this: I think I possibly learnt more in one day that I’ve ever learnt before and the skills are relevant to all driving and can be practised daily. On the way home, I drove the ‘long way’ just to practise and feel the difference in the attitude of the car. I used to do this now and again because there are a few good straights and it’s nice to give the car a ‘blast’. This time, I drove that way home because I wanted to drive round the corners properly."
"Extremely professional driver training. Period. I wanted a course that would deliver a very high level of training, in an organised and professional manner. The course exceeded my expectations in every way, I wish I had started working with CAT Driver training years ago. There is no doubt that if you are looking for absolute top level training, there isn't anywhere else to look. Somehow they manage to follow a very tried and tested course structure, yet it is tailored all the way along to meet your requirements and current skill set. very impressive. I cannot rate this company highly enough. I have more dates booked already."
"Very structured training Paul was very clear and methodical in his coaching. The training technique was built up in various sections during the day and all came together like a jigsaw puzzle in the end for a great result."
"It's hard not to be enthusiastic about the lasting impact CAT Driver Training will have on your approach to driving. I spent a day with Paul exploring the potential of my new vehicle. The coaching is clear, methodical and structured to allow you to go on learning for a full day without overload. The training venue is superb and quiet enough (on the day I attended) to allow uninterrupted driving. Brilliant admin team too. Absolutely 5 Star!"
"Everything you read about these people is true and i cannot really add anything apart from clicking these five stars and to say they are truly incredibly knowledgeable, professional and nice. I did the Performance Driver Track day in my amazing six-month-old 911 GTS 4 and I now know so much more about my car and myself. I was in a group of six people all with different driving skill levels from the complete novice (me) to regular track day enthusiasts and the day was a journey of discovery for everyone. I am so pleased to have done it."
"First class performance car training day. Many thanks to Paul & your great team for a really enjoyable training day at Millbrook on Friday. I learnt a lot more about the capabilities of my F430 and found many new limits! The attention to detail in the delivery of the training was exceptional. I would recommend this to anyone with a performance car who wants to fully understand and enjoy their vehicle."
"An amazing day. If you drive you should go to CAT. If you have a performance car you MUST go to CAT. A day with CAT will transform your driving, you it be safer on the road in any situation and it will be the biggest performance upgrade your car will ever get. I learned so much in one day without any pressure, effort or stress. Colin's coaching is world class, he makes it simple / interesting to understand and easy to absorb / remember. The whole day and and everything leading up to it are well organised by the team. They REALLY care that you have a great day and TOTALLY deliver. You owe it to yourself to go."
"Absolutely Brilliant! The best advice I can give: believe every one of the glowing reviews on CAT! I approached CAT because I wanted to feel more comfortable with my newly-purchased BMW, the first rear-wheel drive car to be used for every-day driving after decades of FWD cars. I wanted to find out what the car's capabilities are, what it would feel like in extreme conditions, understand what it was telling me at the limits and, generally to get advice on my own technique. I wasn't a novice, having done plenty of track days and laps of the Nordschleife but I just knew that there's always plenty more to learn... A day's Performance Driver session met every one of my targets, and then more! Paul was a patient, logical and technical instructor who took time to explain what would happen in each manoeuvre and then fully debriefed that stage so that I not only knew what the car was doing but also understood what effect on the car my own actions were having. The proof of the pudding was in the final stage - setting consistent timed laps of the handling circuit. I'd worried a little about this all day as I'd have described my driving as enthusiastic but perhaps not consistent. The results were close to unbelievable to me! By remembering all that Paul had demonstrated and explained to me I surpassed my wildest dreams. Fantastic! As a result of this day, I now have more belief in my ability to read what my car's saying to me which brings confidence and relaxation. The car and I are now a team, rather than me just sitting there making it go down the road. I can highly recommend the whole CAT experience. Professional, friendly, patient, technical when required and not afraid to challenge when necessary. Oh, and the lunch is good too! I wish I could afford to go back every month..."
"Achieve your driving goals here! Can't ask for more than that! The entire experience was a positive and pleasant one. Everyone I met at CAT Driver Training contributed positively to the day, regardless of the role, so thank you to Jo, Lynne and of course, Colin! CAT have existing programmes for teaching anyone the fundamentals and advanced techniques of how to drive fast, but Colin can identify really quickly what you can and cannot do, and is quick to understand how to best use your time. I went in with my own unique set of requirements which slightly 'broke' the programme, but it was no problem at all and the most impressive thing was that I achieved my goals by the end of the day! I wanted to understand my car, be able to find and drive at the grip limit, and also understand how to be a faster and better driver. A lot to fit into a day, but Colin managed it in the most efficient way possible, and we achieved them all! Colin has great insights into vehicle dynamics, as well as the human machine behind the wheel. He understands why we sometimes don't function as optimally as we would like! His ability to listen to you, translate your input and isolate what is not working with your current technique helps focus the day on exactly what needs attention. This focus, along with Colin's 'feeling' of how the package of car and driver is behaving, makes him uniquely qualified to provide great direction and input to help you become the best driver possible. A lot of people talk about it, but very few can translate the inputs to a specific process for you to follow as a driver. The process is all about starting with foundations and building on them. It doesn't always seem to make sense, but trust the system - it all comes together in the end! The time is not cheap, but it will help you achieve your goals, so how do you put a price on that!? Thank you CAT Driver Training!!
"Best In Class Driver Training The training provided by Colin at CAT Driver training is superb. I am lucky enough to attended training days with Porsche, Lotus, Aston Martin and the day with a Colin at Millbrook has topped them all being informative, challenging, practical and above all delivered by a true Petrol Head. Thanks again and I will be back with the 911."
"Reminding how to drive fast A day with Colin on a 'One to One' basis is almost essential for anyone who lives on a small rock in the middle of the English Channel or lives in a city. We don't drive fast and don't get the opportunity to drive fast unless we are on a track. Colin spent the day reminding me how much fun it was to have 'fast feet' and to make the Tyres 'squeak' as they reach the sticky limit. I think I lost about 7kg in weight during the day as I was worked so hard but oh what a day. Thoroughly recommended to anyone who had a petrol head. Best bit was the 'Alpine Loop' at the end of the day. Full gas on the exit with all four squeaking. 👍😃"
"Excellent! Colin, Jo, Paul and the team are amazing, professional and have a unique ability to cover all areas of driving properly. My driving capability has been enhanced beyond measure. I highly recommend them and the CAT Advanced Driving Academy Programme. During the course it became clear to me that CAT Driving are one of the very few on the planet with such experience and capability. They have designed a brilliant dedicated package focused on working with you and delivered with an attentive caring personal touch."
"Paul was amazing: awesome teacher with a great brain. Made me realize my Mustang has actually way more grip and better and better handling than I thought. Top notch facilities in Millbrook. Totally worth it."