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While ties, coffee mugs, and gift cards are good standby options, these last-minute Father’s Day gift ideas have you covered if your dad loves cars, racing, or the latest automotive gadgets. The items listed here we personally own and have reviewed and used extensively.
Best Father’s Day Gifts
Radar detectors, books, pressure washers, and jump starters top our list.
If your dad loves gadgets and has a lead foot, a new radar detector will be the best Father’s Day gift he has received in years! If your dad doesn’t have a radar detector or hasn’t had one in a long time, the technology has grown exponentially. The best units today, from brands like Escort, Radenso, and Uniden, will detect all modern police radar bands well in advance, so your dad will have plenty of time to slow down.
Our top pick is the Escort MAXcam 360c, a two-in-one unit with a radar detector and a high-resolution dash camera. In our experience, the radar detector and dash camera perform wonderfully, although the optional smartphone app accompanying the MAXcam needs improving. You don’t need the smartphone app to run the unit, and we don’t use it ourselves, but it’s something to be aware of when you are shopping for your dad.
The Escort MAXcam 360c is on the higher side at $850 because it’s a dual-purpose unit, though it’s a helpful tool and a fun toy with its unique combination of features. The dash camera is also handy if your dad is ever the victim of a hit-and-run accident.
Other excellent options at a lower price point include the Radenso DS1 and Uniden R4, both of which we affectionately call our “grab and go” radar detectors. In other words, your dad will go through some initial settings after taking the unit out of the box, then prop it up on the windshield without ever really needing to mess with it again.
Here are some additional resources from our YouTube channel:
Escort MAXcam 360c: We put the MAXcam to the test around metro Detroit in this video, which includes dash camera footage driving across the Mackinac Bridge during an extended road trip.
Radenso DS1: We cover the high points and essential features of the DS1 in this video, including how it compares to the Uniden R4.
Uniden R4: One of the best radar detectors for the money, as seen in this video detailing the different settings and features.
NASCAR turns 75 years young in 2023, and NASCAR 75 Years is the perfect gift for dad to commemorate the occasion. Authored by a quartet of veteran NASCAR reporters and motorsport insiders, the chapters go decade by decade, starting with the 1940s. Packed with historical photos, NASCAR 75 Years showcases the biggest household names ever associated with the sport, including Allison, Busch, Earnhardt, Flock, Gordon, Johnson, Stewart, Yarborough, and more.
If your dad is also a grandpa, NASCAR 75 Years is a great way for him to share his love of the sport with your kids. Right now, new and used copies are available on Amazon. We featured NASCAR 75 Years as part of our Book Garage Collection, which spotlights other amazing automotive and racing books that make great Father’s Day gifts.
If your dad is an avid Monopoly fan who insists on playing during family get-togethers, take a look at these different car-themed boards, one of which includes a NASCAR edition.
NASCAR 75 Years captures the most remarkable moments throughout the decades: from the beaches of Daytona to the jaw-clenching competition, the mind-bending technology, the triumphs, the teamwork, and the high-speed thrills.
Large-format photography throughout NASCAR history brings the stories to life, each written by a roster of veteran motorsport reporters and historians.
Perfect gift for your dad to share his love of NASCAR with your kids.
Gifts For DIY Dads
If your dad likes to get his hands dirty while cleaning, here are three Father’s Day gift ideas.
In addition to our vehicles, we have used our Dremel Versa on kitchen stoves, showers, patio furniture, utility sinks, and more. The portable, handheld power cleaner offers 2,200 rpm of rechargeable power, four interchangeable cleaning pads, and a rubber guard to prevent water and cleaning solutions from being flung around the room. When fully charged, the Versa runs for about 15 to 20 minutes, long enough to do most cleaning jobs around the homestead.
If your dad has arthritis, the Dremel Versa is an excellent Father’s Day gift. It will allow him to get more shine with less elbow grease. At the time of this writing, the Dremel Versa is available on Amazon for about $60.
Chemical Guys ProFlow PM2000 Pressure Washer
Like the Dremel Versa, the Chemical Guys ProFlow PM2000 will make short work of nearly any cleaning job, from vehicles to patio furniture. Lightweight and maneuverable, the ProFlow has a 20-foot water hose, 35-foot power cable, self-locking polyurethane casters, and different nozzle attachments that taper water flow, depending on what needs cleaning. In addition to any car or truck, your dad can use the ProFlow to clean siding or brick, walkways or patios, and lawn equipment.
Cordless car vacuums, like the Fanttik V8 Mate, offer the convenience of on-demand suction when your dad needs to give the interior a good once-over. The V8 Mate has an extendable and flexible hose, crevice nozzle, 120-milliliter integrated dust cup, built-in stainless steel and HEPA filters, and a storage bag. Three different brush attachments, including a pet hair brush, come with the V8 Mate, giving the battery-powered vacuum more versatility.
During our full review of the Fanttik V8 Mate, we found it was well-suited for mild interior cleaning jobs, say after a trip to the park with your kids or nieces and nephews. If your dad needs something for heavy vacuuming around the garage, a standard shop vac is still preferred, but the V8 will do just fine for quick jobs. Right now, it’s available via Amazon for $80.
Another potential Father’s Day gift for DIY dads is the Fanttik E1 Pro mini electric screwdriver. The magnetized E1 Pro runs for two hours with a full battery and tightens up to 400 screws on a single charge. If your dad needs an upgraded accessory for the workbench or toolbox, the E1 Pro is a superb Father’s Day gift. As of this writing, it’s available as part of a convenient bundle on Amazon with the X8 portable tire inflator.
Best Father’s Day Gifts for DIY Dads
Portable power cleaners, pressure washers, and car vacuums top our list.
Consider a portable jump starter like the NOCO GB70 as a Father’s Day gift if your dad likes to turn wrenches. With a portable unit, your dad doesn’t have to mess around with jumper cables if the battery dies in one of his project cars. Likewise, the NOCO GB70 is an excellent addition to any winter emergency kit, as it offers additional features beyond the ability to jump a battery, like a 400-lumen emergency strobe light. If your dad has an unexpected dead battery away from home, the GB70 will get him back on the road in no time.
The NOCO GB70 will jump various lead-acid batteries, including wet cell, gel, maintenance-free, enhanced flooded, and absorbed glass mat (AGM). As a more muscular unit in NOCO’s product line, the GB70 will handle gasoline engines up to eight liters and diesel powertrains up to six liters in displacement. The GB70 will also jump garden tractors, snowmobiles, four-wheelers, and other marine and RV batteries.
During our full review of the GB70, our only critique was that NOCO flip the location of the charging bank and the flashlight to make it easier to see the battery at night. However, it’s not a dealbreaker, and if your dad needs a better portable jump starter, the GB70 will be a great Father’s Day gift. Right now, it’s available on Amazon for $200.
Durable and compact, the 2,000-amp GB70 accommodates nearly every vehicle.
Integrated flashlight and charging bank provide added convenience.
Mistake-proof design with reverse polarity and spark protections.
Best Father’s Day Gifts For The Money
If your dad loves working on cars or the latest automotive gadgets, consider one of the items above for a Father’s Day gift. Everything on this list we own and use ourselves, and we are confident your dad will enjoy them too. Wishing your dad a Happy Father’s Day from all of us here at Automoblog in Detroit.
Carl Anthony is the Managing Editor of Automoblog and the host of AutoVision News Radio and AutoSens Insights. He is a Midwest Automotive Media Association member and on the board of directors for the Ally Jolie Baldwin Foundation. Like many Detroiters, Carl is holding out for a Lions Super Bowl win.