The best part about being friends with (or related to) a car fan is that they are really easy to buy gifts for. And with Christmas just over a month away, there is plenty of time to order that something special for the petrol head in your.
If you’re in need of a little inspiration, we have 20 top picks over the next three weeks to suit all tastes and ages, and none f them will set you back more than £50. In fact, many of these ideas cost a lot less than that, so there’s no excuse for not indulging the car buff you love.
• Winter car checklist: driving kit and best buys
Russell Wallis art prints
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If you’re after some artwork for your garage, den or even your living room, these brilliant prints by graphic designer Russell Wallis are well worth a look. Our favourite series are the ‘evolution’ pieces – showing a model line down the ages in sharp profile. They’re available as a photographic print, canvas, metal wall art or even on cushions and notebooks.
Mark 9 Goggles Compact Deluxe
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Absolute essentials for the veteran car enthusiast or classic racer, these goggles also have the appeal of just looking really, really cool. They’re slimline to fit beneath modern crash helmets, and are held on by an elasticated strap. In addition, the lenses are made from modern polycarbonate rather than glass, for safety and ease of replacement.
Scalextric Autograph Series Porsche 911 RSR
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The Scalextric racer in your family will adore this Porsche 911 RSR, with Le Mans livery and a card signed by driver Nick Tandy. It’s a top-quality piece, and a great-looking addition to your track. Porsche nuts might not even take it out of the box.
Kennedy Professional KEN-572-6040K
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you can’t beat a practical gift, and this set of Kennedy screwdrivers won our most recent test thanks to its solid build, superb handles and top value. Suitable for all the screws you’re likely to find on a car, plus the straight-edged flat blades make accessing recessed fasteners easy.
Six-month subscription to Auto Express
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What could be better than a six-month subscription to your favourite car weekly? Get all the latest news, car reviews, features and consumer info through your letterbox every week. A brilliant gift for car fans. Annual subscriptions are also available.
Jaguar Heritage E-Type mug set
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We’re big fans of this classy mug twin-set depicting the E-Type in intricate technical line drawings. You get one black mug and one white one, with red Jaguar branding and contrasting line details, and they’re dishwasher and microwave safe. A builder’s tea has never been classier.
Land Rover Defender Multitool
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A good multitool is a handy thing to have, but that’s no reason to weigh down your pockets with a beefy Swiss Army Knife. This dinky do-it-all contains 11 useful tools including a bottle opener, spanner set and a tyre tread depth gauge. Best of all, it’s shaped like a true British icon: the Land Rover Defender. And it’s supplied in a faux-suede pouch to protect you from the sharp edges.
Framed 3D racing circuit
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Any Formula One fan would adore this framed 3D image of one of 2017’s Grand Prix circuits. All 20 are available, from Monaco to Singapore and Silverstone to Sochi. For an extra personal touch, an engraved message can be added on the back. Simple, classy and a talking point for enthusiasts.
Forza Horizon 4
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Every gamer should have a good racing title in their collection and, quite frankly, nothing has been released in 2018 that touches Forza Horizon 4. As an extra addition, it’s actually set in the UK – so native petrolheads will be able to smash through drystone walls, race down B-roads and drive across fields of wheat to their heart’s content.
Road Racer beechwood car
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Get them started young with this lovely beechwood sports car. It snaps together in a flash, and parts can be interchanged with other models in the series for further fun. It’s supplied with a sporty red chassis, beech upper and low-slung cockpit. Suitable for motorists aged three and over.
Tile Mate key finder
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We all know someone who’s always losing their keys, but hopefully with a Tile attached that should be less of an issue. These brilliant Bluetooth gadgets can track keys, phones, wallets – anything they’re attached to – via the companion smartphone app. Worth it for the peace of mind.
BMW Kidney Grille notebook
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Few shapes in motoring are as iconic as the BMW kidney grille, so why not give this notebook, with silhouettes of kidney grilles past and present on the front? The BMW link continues with a logo pin and a brilliant M-striped bookmark. The design is repeated on the pages inside, too.
Aston Martin Racing umbrella
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Everyone needs a brolly to keep in the car, right? While we may not all have Aston Martins, this AMR racing umbrella will make you feel the part. The two-tone navy and bright green pattern is really striking, too – perfect for brightening up a miserable day, and reminiscent of Aston’s racers.
Auto Finesse Original Car Care Kit
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Budding valeters can get off to a flier with this Auto Finesse kit. It has the essentials to get your car looking fabulous, with a shampoo, polish and wax. Also included are microfibre cloths and a microfibre applicator, so you can start protecting the car before the turkey’s cooked.
Drive by Giles Chapman
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A superb coffee table book – visually stunning and an ideal gift for petrolheads of any age. Author Chapman has a knack for writing books complex and detailed enough to be enjoyed by enthusiasts, while remaining perfectly accessible for older children and teenagers. It’s also beautifully printed – a real keeper.
Brown & Geeson Ford Escort T-shirt
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This commemorative T-shirt celebrates a true icon with a road, race and rally pedigree few cars can match. It’s printed in recognition of the Ford Escort’s 50th birthday this year, and features the effortlessly cool Mk1 model with bubble arches in the race B&G livery, along with the legend ‘1968-2018’. The shirt is a regular fit, available in sizes from S to XXL.
30-minute Young Driver experience
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A Young Driver experience is a treat for any budding motorist, whether it’s a bit of fun for a younger child or a head start for older teenagers before they take on learning for real. This half-hour session for 10 to 17-year-olds is held on a safe, closed course.
Thermos Stainless King
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For the millions of tea and coffee fans who like a brew as they drive, this Thermos travel mug is a great companion. When we tested it against two rivals last year, it was so good at retaining heat that boiling coffee still registered in the 90-degree range hours later. It’s sold in a range of pleasant colours, too; we really like this deep red.
MINI phone case
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It’s probably not too much of a stretch to say most MINI owners love their smartphones – so why not get them a matching MINI case to protect it in? Leather-backed, sturdy and lined with microfibre to prevent scratches, it features an embossed MINI logo on the rear, so there can be no mistaking what you drive. Non-MINI owners are also welcome, of course.
Prescott Hillclimb tickets (La Vie en Bleu)
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Prescott Hillclimb is a brilliant day out for fans of modern and classic cars alike, and La Vie en Bleu is its annual celebration of all things French. That means the Bugatti owners’ club is out in force, along with many others, and there’s plenty of action on and off the famous hillclimb course. A ticket to both the Saturday and Sunday events costs £25.
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