Planning to get abroad in the car this summer to beat the airport queues? Or maybe you just want a staycation with a long drive to the coast or to a camp site in the wilderness. Keeping the car packed with snacks and drinks is one thing. But the latest driving tech provides peace of mind, safety and even relief from boredom along the way. Chris Price reports
Available from Snooper.co.uk from £179.99 with four wheel sensors
Reduce the chances of a puncture and save money by testing your car’s tyre pressure. In 2014, the RAC attended almost two million breakdowns in the UK and a wheel change or puncture with no spare were in the top ten causes for breakdown. The TypePilot monitoring system can test the pressure of your car’s tyres reducing the chance of a blow-out or puncture while on the road. Drivers will be also able to make sure their car is running more efficiently and tyres last longer, lowering overall fuel consumption. It works with both cars and caravans making it the perfect gadget for protecting all passengers and saving money on that long awaited summer holiday trip.
Snooper 4ZERO – protect against speeding fines and improve safety
Available from Halfords for £149.99 (and a three month free subscription)
It can be tempting to ‘put your foot down’ when driving to a holiday destination, but the Snooper 4ZERO speed camera detector will ensure those on a getaway stick to the speed limit and drive safely. It’s a small, portable device that sits neatly on a dashboard and will alert users quickly to the presence of police speed traps (both fixed and mobile laser speed guns) which are often located at accident black spots. The compact Snooper 4ZERO can also electronically indicate potentially dangerous or hazardous situations, making for a calm and safe staycation drive.
Cobra CDR 900 DashCams
£159.88 from Argos.co.uk
Record the road ahead or create action films while on holiday! HD DashCams (dashboard cameras) will continuously record video of the road ahead of drivers, serving as the perfect eyewitness in the event of traffic incidents, while also providing peace-of-mind and an extra sense of security when on long drives across the country. With a special waterproof case (see left) the Cobra CDR 900 dash cam – pictured above – is the perfect action cam! Record awesome films on a sailing boat in the English channel, the kids surfing in Cornwall or even use while walking the hills in the Great British weather. Recording in super HD 1296p, the action footage is good quality and users can even send what they’ve taken straight to their smartphone via WiFi to share with friends instantly.
EE Buzzard 2
Shaped a bit like a gearing stick, this WiFi dongle has been specifically designed for in car use. It plug into your car’s dashboard via the cigarette lighter and supports up to 10 WiFi connections simultaneously. On board is a new lighting system that makes it easier to use and what’s more it can also serve as a USB charger, allowing you to charge your devices while you browse the internet. EE’s new hotspot is priced at £49.99 when bought outright, but is free if you pay £20 a month for a 24 month contract with 15Gb a month of data.
Nextbase Car 9 Dual – 9″ Dual Portable In-Car DVD Players
Available from Halfords for £179.99
One way of avoiding cries of ‘are you there yet?’ from the back seat is to invest in a couple of DVD players. Exclusive to Halfords are these two 9inch widescreen display complete with headrest for attaching to the back of the seat. Each 9inch tablet style screen can be used independently to play two separate movies or linked together using the supplied cable to share one movie on both screens. Supporting a range of disc types and formats (DVD, MP3, CD, JPEG, CD-R/RW, DVD+/-R and DVD+/-RW), the Nextbase players can be used not only as a portable movie player but also a music player and a picture viewer (a USB slot and SD card slot are also fitted). The DVD players boast two stereo speakers each, but there’s also a 3.5mm headphone socket with headphones and in-ear headphones included in the box.