For the latest classic car news, features, buyer’s guides and classifieds, sign up to the C&SC newsletter here
There may still be 26 days left until Christmas, but it’s never too early to start hunting for that special gift – and, no, socks aren’t an option*.
To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of 42 Christmas present ideas for classic car enthusiasts. With ideas for all ages and prices for all budgets, you’re sure to find inspiration here.
*Actually, socks may be an option
Classic car mugs (£12)
Before you say, “Not another mug!”, check these out – we think they’re pretty special.
Automotive artist Sheridon Davies has produced a series of mugs featuring his evocative road-car and motor-racing artworks.
Subjects available include various Bugattis – among them the iconic T57S Atlantic – plus the Maserati 250F, Aston Martins and Alfa Romeos.
Each mug is priced at £12, and Davies’ entire range also includes coasters and art prints, too.
London Motor Show print (from £20)
Still plastering pictures of ’80s supercars across your walls? While the side strakes of a Testarossa might set your knees aquiver, they’re unlikely to go down well with those of a subtler disposition – or an aversion to angular bodywork.
Replace the posters of your teenage years with something understated: this throwback Motor Show print from the London Transport Museum offers ’30s charm, coachbuilt sophistication and fantastic font selection in equal measure – and you can always keep the Ferrari snaps in your cupboard for later reference.
Racetrack rug (£14)
From mugs to rugs – and we think these are pretty ace for car-mad kiddies.
Pushing toy cars around the carpet at home is a starting point for most young enthusiasts, and Flair Rugs has produced the ideal mat for junior race fans to play on.
The multi-coloured ‘Formula 1’ design apes the Estoril layout, with pits and garage, and measures 80 x 120cm. With non-slip backing, the nylon weave is durable and washable. The rug offers hours of fun and is priced at just £14.
Suixtil Motor Racing Beanie (£65)
OK, so £65 might seem steep for what is essentially a woolly hat, but this is no ordinary beanie: this a racing beanie, made by Suixtil – suppliers to the likes of Formula 1 legend Juan Manuel Fangio in the ’50s and ’60s.
More than that, it’s made from soft cashmere and lambswool, packs flaps to keep your ears warm at winter race meetings and comes with those all-important driving goggles printed on the noggin – less effective than the real thing but much easier to remember.
Mariclaro Three Speed Messenger Bag 905 D (C$139)
Old cars that can no longer be driven can still have a purpose – and for proof of that, look no further than Mariclaro’s range of wonderfully idiosyncratic bags.
All are hand-crafted from old car interiors – seat leather, belts and buckles and more – and as well as looking great, they’re also supremely practical, with accessory pockets, zippered compartments and adjustable straps.
The company also has a range of high-end bags from specific models – the 911 (993) Weekender Bag caught our eye – and if you're only after a smaller gift you should check out their range of wallets.
PROMOTED: Silk car scarves and pocket squares
These vibrant luxury twill silk scarves and pocket squares feature designs of vintage and classic cars drawn by illustrator Rupali Prakash. Just the thing for next year’s Goodwood Revival!
You can order online below, or for bespoke custom orders for your clubs email email@example.com
T-Lab Paddock Hill T-shirt (£25)
Still rocking that oil-stained top you bought at the British Grand Prix in ’72? We salute your devotion to sustainability but, in the interests of cleanliness, it might be time for an upgrade.
This appealing racing-green tee offers a subtle nod to the famous first corner at Brands Hatch, without screaming “all modern circuits are rubbish and I’ve drawn better layouts than Hermann Tilke on a napkin after five pints.”
UFGears U-9 Grand Prix Car (£41.95)
UGears’ fantastic range of mechanical wooden models includes several early motor cars.
Inspired by Edwardian racing machinery is the U-9 Grand Prix Car, which features a 16-valve V8 with working internal parts.
Looking like a De Dietrich racer, this ingenious kit consists of 350 press-out wooden parts – using sustainably sourced timber – with rubber-band drive and tyres.
Only wax and sandpaper are required for the assembly, which is recommended for those over 14 years old. It’s priced at £41.95.
Grippaz gloves (£10.66 for 50)
At around £10 for 50, the premium-quality Grippaz gloves are great value – and having used them, we think they’re also a great product.
The silicone- and latex-free nitrile gloves don’t tear easily, but the key for us is the grip offered by the ‘fish scale’ pattern.
Even when changing coolant, these gloves offered a good amount of traction and we weren’t constantly swapping for a new pair.
C&SC’s Greatest Hits special editions (£9.99)
We’ve now published seven fantastic Greatest Hits publications, all of which are packed with C&SC content from the last decade on a given theme.
Each one is available for £9.99 online, including postage and packaging, and we think you’ll agree they’re terrific value for money, with around 200 glossy pages full of fantastic photos and absorbing stories.
Here’s a list of our Greatest Hits series to date and how to buy them:
- American Classics – click here
- Jaguar – click here
- Porsche – click here
- Aston Martin – click here
- Mercedes – click here
- Supercars – click here
- Ferrari – click here
Land Rover Icon (£50)
A symbol of humankind’s victory over slippery surfaces, the humble Land Rover has become the Hoover of off-roaders.
Rugged, reliable and better than any other 70-year-old in slippery conditions, it’s an iconic classic worth celebrating – and this coffee-table compendium is a fine place to start, packed with details of all the models, stacks of action snaps and tales from those who’ve lived with the Landie over its lifetime.
PROMOTED: G-Case trolleys
Be the envy of the airport with a G-Case trolley suitcase. They’re handcrafted from original jerrycans and are available in 10L and 20L sizes and in a wide range of colours.
Different types of inlay available to secure your goods and you can even accessorise with high-quality stickers including Ford Mustang, Land Rover, BMW and more.
Price is dependent on the type, with the Mini range starting at €89.99 and the full-size models costing €149.99.
Goodwood Tin Mug (£9)
Nothing says motorsport quite like sipping hot coffee on a freezing Sunday morning, sitting on a damp hill overlooking a former airfield as you await the sound of roaring engines. But not until 10am, of course.
As caffeine containers go, this enamel mug from Goodwood is pretty neat – not least because it comes in a fetching shade of British racing green.
Lego Aston Martin DB5 (£129.99)
You’re never too old for Lego, right? We couldn’t agree more and the iconic 007 Aston Martin DB5 is the latest classic to inspire the Lego design team.
With more than 1200 pieces, the finished model measures 13in in length and features many of the famous gadgets of the James Bond Goldfinger movie legend.
Highlights include a working ejector seat, a pull-back gearstick to reveal machine guns in the wings, revolving registration plates, bulletproof rear screen and extendable wheel-mounted tyre scythes. It’s priced at £129.99 – and you can get it here.
Sparco Vintage Classic Race Suit (£590)
A dressing gown might keep you toasty warm this winter, but it’s not much use if you need to hop into your sports car at a moment’s notice.
Whether you’re nipping down to the shops or competing on the track, this retro race suit from Sparco is sure to sort you out. It’s FIA-approved so you know it’ll keep you safe, while a slot on the chest is ideal for storing your aviators – perfect for channelling your inner James Hunt, even if you’re just cycling to the Post Office.
Sensorist (from €185)
Your old man might claim he can check the humidity in a garage using nothing but a tea towel and some bath salts, but the rusted chassis on his Mk1 Golf suggests otherwise.
For a more reliable solution, stick this sensor kit in your garage: it’ll take humidity readings and direct them via the bundled gateway to your smartphone or PC – so you’ll always know whether your leather is living its best life.
Bellroy Key Cover Plus (£45)
It might be cool to own a stable of stunning classics, but you’ll look the fool if you stroll up to your Ferrari only to find you’ve brought your Porsche keys. Muppet.
Put paid to fob confusion with this handy holder from Bellroy: slim and stylish, it can carry up to eight keys on a secure toggle and snaps shut by the power of magnets.
PROMOTED: F1 DVD boxsets by Duke
These handsome boxsets encompass four exciting decades of Formula 1® Official Reviews, spread across 40 DVDs.
Many of the years have never previously been available on DVD, so this is the perfect opportunity to rediscover all of those thrilling moments of action, featuring stars such as Ayrton Senna, Alain Prost, Nigel Mansell, Michael Schumacher, Jean Alesi and many more.
Each Official Review has been digitised – often from the original master – and comes in a specially designed sleeve featuring stunning photography from the LAT archives.
The perfect gift for any fan of classic motorsport of the highest level.
Christopher Ward C8 Birkin’s Blower (£1995)
Think this ticker is expensive? It’s a darn sight cheaper than the fabled Bentley Blower that sold at auction in 2012 for £4.5m – and, coincidentally, it contains part of a piston from that very car.
Developed by Tim Birkin from a Bentley 4.5-litre, the legendary Blower was a 240bhp monster that set the track record at Brooklands in 1932, with a speed just shy of 138mph.
Pick up this limited-edition number from Christopher Ward and you can wear part of it on your wrist. Presumably if you buy all 90 you can build an entire piston. Maybe.
Scalextric Gulf Racing set (£79.99)
The Gulf Racing livery is as evocative as they come – so this Scalextric set should bring back a few memories as you take on your kids in a recreation of the 1969 24 Hours of Le Mans (although given that the two included cars are a GT and an LMP, you might need to use your imagination).
You get more than 4.8m of track and can create four alternative track layouts – and if you want to make it more authentic, you could always add the standalone GT40 race car (£49.99).
Gunson Twin Head Cleaning Brush (£3.48)
This is perfectly shaped – and ideally priced – if you're looking for a last-minute stocking filler.
Gunson has paired a Nylon-bristled brush, for cleaning dials and switches, with a three-pronged microfibre wand, useful for vents and louvred panels.
We found the brush did a fine job and the results were impressive – but the microfibre ends were too big for the style of vents on our classic.
Still, for just £3.48 it’s a handy tool to have and cheap to replace.
Gunson brake adjusting wrench (£6.41)
Here’s another wallet-friendly option that will also slip easily into a stocking.
Adjusting your classic’s brakes just got easier thanks to this bespoke brake-adjusting tool from Gunson.
The £6.41 wrench’s slim design will fit most drum brakes. The 175mm-long tool is designed for both 1/4in and 5/16in square brake adjusters, and is made of hardened and tempered chrome-vanadium steel for strength and durability.
McKlein calendars (€39.90)
McKlein, the German publisher and photo archive, has again produced a stunning pair of large-format calendars.
Measuring 67x48cm, each features 26 images, giving you options for every month. Rally fans will want to go for The Wider View 2020 while Motorsport Classic 2020 Calendar (pictured) covers F1, sports cars, GTs, saloon cars and more.
PROMOTED: ColorBond Interior Refinishing Paint
A unique easy-to-apply aerosol paint for leather, vinyl and hard plastics. Restore your interior or completely change colour, it’s so easy to do! Excellent finish and durability.
Dashboard desk clock (£115)
This stylish, twin-faced desk clock is inspired by 1930s sports-car dashboard instruments and would make an interesting Christmas present.
The two white and black dials allow dual time zones to be displayed, and the clock can either be stood on a desk or other surface, or mounted on the wall.
Made from aluminium and brass, the unit measures 25cm wide and is priced at £115.
A subscription to Classic & Sports Car magazine (from £29.99)
Give gift envy this Christmas with a subscription to Classic & Sports Car!
It’s a present that lasts all year, as the lucky recipient gets to enjoy 12 issues of their favourite classic car magazine.
And have it your way with a print subscription, a digital one, or a print-and-digital bundle subscription.
Baghera Classic Green Pedal Car (£149.95)
Looking for the ideal gift for a car-mad kid? Try Mee Mee London and its extensive range of ride-on cars.
There are several styles available, from the pre-war Uilac single-seater (£91.95) to a 1950s-style Baghera speedster (£89.95) and the Baghera Classic vintage pedal car (pictured), plus trailers and a petrol pump.
Curb T-shirts (from $29.99)
Curb produces an inspired range of T-shirts including ‘The Manual Gearbox Preservation Society’: designs include a TMGPS logo printed on the front and a large logo on the rear of a black T-shirt. Other options include a transaxle graphic with yellow type on grey or ‘black heather’.
T-shirts are priced at $29.99, hoodies $59, plus there’s a large range of automobilia, from greetings cards to keyrings.
Classic car weathervanes
Well, this is something different – how about a motoring-themed weathervane?
Mechanical engineer William Twelvetrees, together with his father Roger, has crafted an impressive range of weathervanes starring much-loved classics including the Jaguar E-type, Land-Rover and Riley Imp – but any can be made to order, so the gift can feature your loved one’s own classic.
They’re made of marine-grade 316 stainless steel with a ½in centre post to ensure long life, no matter what Mother Nature throws at them. A typical vane, including directional arrow, measures 27in.
Of course, prices for bespoke commissions vary, depending on the complexity of the subject, but the range of existing products starts at £210 plus postage.
PROMOTED: Welsh Enterprises’ Union Jack Car Cover
Show your pride in your Jaguar (or other British automobiles) with our new redesigned Union Jack indoor car cover*! Our car cover is made from a very soft, non-abrasive cotton material. Now available in three sizes: small, medium, and large, fitting a large range of Jaguar and British automobiles.
A great gift for the Jaguar or British automobile enthusiast in your life.
We ship worldwide. Gift cards available
Give us a call at 1 800 875 5247 (international call 001 740 282 8649) for more information and pricing. Be sure to ask about matching Union Jack steering wheel and mirror covers!
*Car cover is for indoor use ONLY and is not waterproof
CTEK MXS 5.0 Fully Automatic Battery Charger (£69.48)
Here’s something many classic car owners will need. CTEK’s MSX 5.0 battery charger is suited to lead-acid batteries from 1.2-110Ah and has automatic temperature compensation for effective charging even in chilly conditions.
It also runs diagnostics to assess the condition of the battery, and has an automatic desulphation programme plus a reconditioning function for rescuing fully discharged batteries.
Our test car had suffered long-term battery woes, but has been transformed – spinning over faster and apparently retaining charge more readily following a couple of months hooked up to the MSX 5.0.
Suixtil Grand Prix Driving Gloves (£70)
For those who own a classic car, these Suixtil driving gloves make a fine addition to any driving ensemble: based on ’50s designs, they’re crafted from lamb’s leather and a knitted upper, with a seamless palm for ultimate comfort as one grips the wheel.
For those who don’t own a classic? They’re the perfect thing to wear while caressing other people’s cars at a concours event, before being politely asked to leave – sans gloves.
Sealey LED3605RA 360° Rechargeable Inspection Lamp (£32.95)
It helps to be able to see what you’re doing when working on your classic – making this limited-edition 360º lamp a great Christmas gift.
It uses a swivel/tilt system to enable the light to be pointed in any direction, while a rubberised magnetic base allows it to be fixed to any flat surface and a rotating hook means it can be also be hung up.
Eight bright LEDs offer 300 lumens of output and a 120º spread of light, in addition to a 1W LED directional torch. And as an extra bonus, the 2.2Ahr lithium-ion battery also powers a microUSB port for charging devices.
Heel tread socks (from £9)
We said at the start of this list that socks weren’t an option when it comes to Christmas – well we lied!
Heel Tread’s stylish range pays tribute to iconic classic cars such as the Audi quattro, Mercedes-Benz 300SL ‘Gullwing’, E30 BMW and Porsche RSR.
Or how about a Miura, a GTO or a Stratos, a McLaren F1, a DB5, an E-type or a Defender? Or maybe a Bullitt Mustang or Mazda 787B (pictured)? You get the idea.
Derek Bell: All My Porsche Races (£45)
Few racing drivers have such an affinity for their chosen marque as Derek Bell and Porsche, and the pairing has now become the subject of C&SC contributor Richard Heseltine’s latest book.
The prolific Heseltine charts the endurance ace’s association with Zuffenhausen, starting with the JW Automotive 917 in 1971 before a five-year gap and the famous Jägermeister-liveried 934.
The 935 years are followed by the arrival of Group C, victory at Daytona, plus his enduring love affair with – and continuing success at – the Circuit de la Sarthe.
Each page drips with high-quality period photographs, ranging from trackside images to candid snaps of the racer among his peers, illuminated by fascinating anecdotes and insights from the man himself.
PROMOTED: Double Car Blast experience with TrackDays
The perfect gift for lovers of vintage and classic cars, the Double Car Blast offers you the chance to drive two classic cars from a range that includes Jaguar E-type, Austin Healey 3000, the classic Aston Martin Vantage, Ford Mustang Fastback and classic Mini Cooper. Pick your two favourites and drive each for three miles at Heyford Park in Oxfordshire.
The approximately two-hour experience also includes a driver safety briefing and commemorative certificate on completion – and you can even pay extra for a high-speed passenger ride.
Playforever wooden cars (from £21.45)
We’re not sure whether to recommend these as Christmas presents for children or adults – but either way, we’ve totally fallen for these models that somehow manage to be cute and cool at the same.
From designs inspired by racers from the 1920s and ’30s to the Maverick Thunderlane range oozing ’60s Americana, plus planes and motorbikes, there’s lots to choose from – including Rufus, a race-car driving dog!
Clarke CTJ1250AB 1.25 Tonne Aluminium Trolley Jack (£113.99)
Every workshop needs a trusty jack, and Clarke’s latest lightweight aluminium racing version is exactly that.
It’s designed to be used on lower classics and slides under chassis rails with ease. The lifting pad, meanwhile, is sheathed in rubber to prevent damage to the underside of your car.
The whole unit tips the scales at 11.65kg, which, combined with the useful handles on each side, makes lifting and moving it a breeze. It’s rated to 1.25 tonnes, enough for most small-to-medium classics, while the hard-wearing metal castors are positioned wide at each corner, making for a secure lifting platform.
Tub Time Grand Prix (£22.99)
Racing cars and deep water don’t typically go well together, but this lovely kids’ play set is never happier than when it’s in the bath.
You get 36 big foam pieces including a racetrack, pit stop, two squirting racing cars, a fire extinguisher squirter and a trophy, and all can either be stuck to tiles or splashed about with in the water. Ideal for young ’uns who want to pretend they’re Senna at Donington ’93 or Hamilton at Silverstone ’08.
Custom Velvet Cushions (£55)
Immortalise your very own classic by having its image laser-engraved on a polyester velvet cushion. Simply send a suitable photograph via NV London Calcutta’s website and the firm will endeavour to complete your order within one working day.
Cushions are available in 12 colours and a personalised message can also be added. Each pillow costs £55, and it’s possible to upgrade to feather filling for £2.50.
Alcosense Lite 2 (£44.99)
Been overdoing it a bit this festive season? Then this will come in handy.
An entry-level digital breathalyser, it analyses the amount of alcohol on your breath before telling you whether you are above or below the legal drink drive limit – and by how much.
The firm claims accuracy of +-0.2%BAC, but presents the information in increments of 0.1mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood – 0.8 being the limit in England. We’ve tested it – the things we do for this job, etc – and it worked exactly as expected.
PROMOTED: Personalised leather dark tan wallet from The Carvolution® Company
This beautiful 100% leather dark tan wallet becomes naturally supple with age, enhancing the simple contemporary style.
Each dark tan wallet can be laser-engraved with your choice of car and message, and is supplied in a craft gift box, with the wallet wrapped in tissue paper – making it the perfect gift.
The wallets have eight card slots, one area for notes and two hidden coin pockets and measure 12cm x 10cm x 1.5cm.
Delivery within 3-5 days. £49.95 for UK delivery, more for international. Order right up until 20 December for Christmas delivery.