There’s nothing quite like sitting behind the wheel of a classic car and feeling the power under the hood as you speed down the highway. Unfortunately, when you choose an older vehicle as your daily driver, you end up trading modern advancements for the power, prestige and nostalgia of an antique treasure.
You don’t have to live in the ’50s or ’60s while enjoying your ride from those decades. Here are some easy tips and tricks to help you bring new tech to an old car.
Install Rear Cameras
There’s nothing worse than backing into a trashcan or pole that’s in your blindspot — especially when you can prevent it. Most new cars come equipped with backup cameras as standard equipment, but you don’t have to worry about backing into a pole in your classic car. Aftermarket rearview cameras are easy to install and link to a display you can attach to your dashboard or rearview mirror.
Aftermarket Heads-up Displays
Your dash display is designed to be easy to read, but it’s below eye level. Every time you check your speed or RPMs, you have to take your eyes off the road for a split second. A heads-up display (HUD) brings these readouts, as well as things like your sound system and navigation, up to eye level without obscuring your view of the road. While you can download a HUD app on your Android and use the reflectiveness of your windshield to display the information, this is limited to things you can access on your phone. It works for navigation or music, but won’t give you any information about your car.
Dedicated HUDs link to your car, providing all the dashboard’s information in an easy-to-read format that helps keep your eyes on the road.
Smart Garage Door Openers
Traditional garage door openers are awkward and clunky and present a security risk if you leave them in your car while it’s parked. Instead of relying on these outdated devices, you can open, close, lock or unlock your garage door with your smartphone.
All you need is a Wi-Fi signal and a smart garage door opener. Once you sync the device to your phone’s app, you’ll never have to worry about forgetting to close the garage door again — because you’ll be able to do it from anywhere.
Lane Departure and Collision Warnings
Most new vehicles come with lane departure and collision warnings that can give you a heads-up if you’re drifting out of your lane or getting too close to the car in front of you. With aftermarket kits, you can give your favorite classic ride the same tools to keep you safe.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety recommends these devices for all older cars to increase driver safety — especially if they’re being passed down to a new or inexperienced driver.
Hands-Free Calling Kits
Old cars don’t have all the bells and whistles that modern models do, which is part of their appeal, but it makes it harder to comply with state laws that ban talking or texting while driving. Most states have some sort of law on the books that makes it illegal to talk on your cellphone while you’re behind the wheel. If your car has a cigarette lighter and radio, you can install a Bluetooth system without drilling any holes or damaging the vehicle’s interior. Once it’s on, you sync it to your phone and voila — you can take calls hands-free.
Bringing Classics Into the 21st Century
You’re not stuck in the past just because you prefer to drive a classic car. Aftermarket devices give you the ability to bring your old car into the 21st century while keeping you safer when you’re behind the wheel.