We've seen the lists of standard gifts for men and women who enjoy their cars. Seat covers, clothing, accessories are all common. This year, some of the auto-dot-coms have listed some more adventurous gifts such as rare collector cars, expensive cars for your tots, designer inspired watches, cell phones, etc.
From a more practical standpoint, the #1 gift of choice that Motorheads Performance recommends is the gift everyone with a classic car or hot rod can enjoy - the gift of a long-sought-after part! Every one of us has a part, accessory or "luxury" add-on that we've put off getting because the money just wasn't there. It doesn't keep us from dreaming about it.
We recently had the wife of one of our restoration customers call us up and ask us, "What would be the ideal gift I could surprise Mike with?" Although we could have rattled off a half dozen items easily, we put our minds to thinking of things that he hadn't put in his budget, but ones that we knew he wanted. Together, we came up with the perfect choice...dazzling new front and rear windows - something her husband thought he'd "get to someday". We know he'll be surprised.
So, how about that new carburetor, intake manifold, or those fancy polished exhaust headers! Give a gift which will truly be enjoyed!
Other items which are worth considering:
DRIVING SCHOOLS - An expensive, but incredible gift for an automotive enthusiast who loves to DRIVE! How about performance driving lessons at a renowned racing school? Programs are offered in sports cars, stock cars, even formula race cars, all across the country. No matter what style driving the man or woman in your life is wild over, you're sure to find a driving school that meets the need. RacingSchools.com is an informative site for finding programs near you. Here are just a few:
· Team Texas is a Nextel Cup Driving School that operates year-round at the Texas Motor Speedway. They are the only stock car driving school in the country that uses 2005 Nextel Cup cars and the current NASCAR Chevrolet SB2 racing engines. Programs include a 4,10,20, 30, 60, or 80 lap programs that allow students to reach speeds over 150 miles per hour and with the opportunity to pass fellow students. http://www.texasmotorspeedway.com/speedwayinfo.aspx?p=DrivingSchools
· Skip Barber offers high-performance driving, advanced driving skills and racing courses. Check out skipbarber.com for more info.
· Team O'Neil Rally School offers courses include rally driving techniques, off-road driving, winter driving and more. Only one location in New Hampshire but check out teamoneil.com for more info.
· LRS Formula racing programs get you started in Formula 2000. Visit lrsformula-usa.com.
DVD's are always a great gift, and there are a couple of new releases that make a good add to the collection. Usually sold for $10-20, these are low-cost treasures.
· Cars - Disney/Pixar's animated movie just came out on DVD. As much as we'd like to say we're too old for cartoons and animated movies, this one is has great animation and characters that are all too real and likeable! Enthusiasts will easily relate to the car characters.
· Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby was rated as one of 2006's funniest movies...one that any Nextel racing fan will get some laughs over.
· Bullitt is one of the classic "must-have" movies, as well as Le Mans and Nicholas Cage's Gone in 60 Seconds.
Video games might also be a good choice. The technology is sure getting better, and some of these games have gotten incredibly realistic. With internet connection, you can even play against others from all over. Here are some popular games:
· Gran Turismo 4 – Made for PlayStation2, this is the latest version of one of the most popular racing game. Known for having the most realistic graphics and gameplay, you can pick from over 500 cars and drive on any of 100 tracks. PlayStation3 just came out, but they're very hard to find.)
· Project Gotham Racing 3 for Xbox360 owners. This game offers a different feel as players drive their own routes through city streets.
· Need for Speed Carbon – The PC owner's selection is also available in many gaming platforms. The Need for Speed racing is a fast-paced adventure where you try to outrun the police as they try to crack down on illegal street racing.