The cars we choose to drive are a reflection of us. They make a statement about our style and values. That’s why it only makes sense that we’re so happy to invest a lot of money in them.
Aftermarket accessories are one of the fastest growing sectors of the automotive industry. Lots of people want to customise the look of their vehicles. Yet, for all the useful and necessary car accessories there are – like a good ole’ air freshener or ladder rack – there are dozens more super-unnecessary, excessively priced options.
Which car accessories are the most over-the-top? From diamond-encrusted keys to scented tires (yes, you read that right), these seven accessories have to be some of the most unnecessary and excessively priced accessories of all time.
Diamond Encrusted Keys and Rims
If you’re buying a Ferrari, chances are you have some coin to burn. But would you be willing to purchase a one-of-a-kind, $23,000 ignition key? London-based jewellery designer Camael offers a Ferrari key covered in 1,000+ diamonds for a total weight of 7 carats. That’s not even the worst diamond accessory. Asanti, a rim manufacturer, makes diamond-encrusted wheels that start at just $1 million.
French Fry Holder
Some drivers have a rule: No food in the car. Others, it seems, eat so much in their car, they need to invest in a French fry holder. Really. In the United States, a dozen different manufacturers offer French fry holding accessories that fit into your vehicle’s cup holders. The only good part: One of these holders costs just about as much as an order of large fries.
A Starlight Headliner
You’ve probably never once thought about your car’s headliner. And surely, if you have, you’ve never thought, “This would be so much better if it had tiny star-light lights installed.” Well, apparently the folks at Rolls Royce had other ideas, and that’s why they introduced The Starlight Headliner. Each hand-designed “constellation” features 800-1600 fiber optic lights, and drivers can customise their own, if they please.
Maybach Granite Trim
Maybach – Mercedes-Benz line of ultra-luxury vehicles – certainly knows a thing or two about over-the-top accessories. Like, for instance, granite interior trim. That’s right, Maybach offers granite inlays in their vehicles that are handcrafted from the natural stone. Yes, it does looks great, but the touch of flair will set you back $60,000. Which would you rather have: A brand new Mercedes C-Class or a granite trim?
What the heck is an airscarf? Well, for starters, it’s one of Mercedes’ most unnecessary introductions. Essentially, an airscarf is an air conditioning vent that’s fitted into the headrest on convertibles. So if you’re ever driving around with the top down, and you think to yourself, “Wow, my head is really cold,” you can blast it with heat and warm it right up. Fortunately, an airscarf will only set you back about $3,000.
Most auto accessories are installed to make your car look better – think aftermarket wheels, LED lights, and bullbars. But some accessories just make your car look ridiculous. Take “carlashes,” for instance, which are stick on eyelashes for your car’s headlamps. For just about $20, you can make your car look like Betty Boop. This is just as annoying as the masculine version: Carstashes.
At one point about a decade ago, someone at South Korean tire manufacturing company Kumho said: “I don’t like the rubber smell of tires; what if they smelled like lavender?” No joke. Kumho Tires released lavender-infused in 2008, and they (didn’t) take the world by storm.
If you want to trick out your ride, you have numerous options. Most are useful, cool looking and add value to your car. But some – from the frivolous, to the downright hilarious – deserve a place in the auto accessory hall of shame.