Do you know car people? Are you a car person? There is a world of awesome holiday gift opportunities out there beyond Porsche watches and Nascar cufflinks. Here's our selection of the weird and wonderful.
Price: $15 + $5 S&H
The Ferrari 625 was the successor to the Ferrari 500 which was driven to two Formula One world titles by Alberto Ascari in 1952 and 1953. Unfortunately, the 625 had otherwordly opposition in 1954 in the shape of Juan Manuel Fangio driving a Mercedes W196. Not that it bothers this speed freak beagle and neither should it bother you: Dutch artist Ed van der Hoek’s numerous paintings of dogs in cars are simply great by themselves. This is a signed edition of 100. If you don’t like Ferraris, he’s also got Alfa Romeos, Citroëns, Volvos, Minis, Camaros, and, yes, a W196 driven by a Dalmatian wearing Fangio’s helmet.
Price: $225 + $12 S&H
Terra Plana is a small British company who make shoes which mimic the dynamics of walking barefoot by using very thin Kevlar soles. This property also makes them excellent driving shoes as they enable you to precisely gauge pedal feel. These pair of chukka boots are named after Formula One’s 2010 world champion Sebastian Vettel. If you’re not a fan of the young German or the year 2010, they also sell Brawn boots ($250) and Button shoes ($175), and if you hate motor racing altogether but don’t mind the President of the Unites States, you can pick up a pair of Baracks ($165). The Sebastians come in either leather (red-brown or black) or desert suede.
Price: £295 ($464) + £20 ($31) S&H
You can’t really go wrong with a British bag made of Italian leather which commemorates America’s first Formula One world champion Phil Hill, made by a company named after a murderous Roman emperor who was himself murdered on April 8, 217 while having a piss by the side of the road, can you? Caracalla has a whole line of bags designed after memorable race car–racing driver combinations, including Stirling Moss’s #722 Mercedes–Benz 300SLR, Juan Manuel Fangio’s #1 Maserati 250F, and Paddy Hopkirk’s rally Mini.
Price: $24.95 + $3.95 S&H
In 1982, at the tender age of not quite two, I was in Los Angeles with my parents. My mother found this exact model on the sidewalk. Someone had stepped on it, causing the roof to suffer massive structural damage and the windshield to disintegrate. It’s my favorite toy car. It’s also the pinnacle of Giotto Bizzarrini-designed Italian-American love. The one you can buy comes with roof and windshield intact. If you wish, you can step on it to create the Crazy Euro Car Boy effect.
Price: $20 + $5 S&H
Squidfire is a small Baltimore company run by Jean-Baptiste Regnard and Kevin Sherry who make marine-themed t-shirts and hoodies. This particular design reminds us all that while cars may rule the land it is giant squid (Architeuthis dux) who rule the abyssal depths.
Price: $126 + S&H (variable)
Driving gloves are a bit passé, but not this particular pair, which shows that in many ways the Diablo was the coolest of pre-German Lamborghinis. Yellow on black is just awesome, lambskin is awesome, and what’s the word for that nickel-plated button that’s a miniature Diablo wheel? I think the word is awesome.
Price: $7.99 + S&H (variable)
Drive On! is Leonard Setright’s last completed book. It is about as dense, witty, British, and wonderful as you can imagine. Be prepared for a tough read: Setright tends to assume surreal levels of intellectual fitness of his readers and Drive On! is no exception. Quotes from Cicero, for instance, are not translated from the Latin. I’ve been meaning to review this for Jalopnik for ages but I’ve always been humbled by the sheer vastness of Setright’s knowledge. What can I say? Get a copy and learn a wealth of intricate details about how cars have shaped us and how we have shaped cars.
Price: £3.50 and up
Peter Hutton is a British illustrator who paints racing cars and motorcycles in the style you can see here. I love their wonderful mixture of technical drawing and art painting. Hutton’s prints come in all shapes and sized, from greeting cards to massive A1 posters.
Price: $26.00 (current bid)
A slot car set with early ‘60s Formula One-style racers. Every part looks massive in a pre-computer age way. Do you have kids? Get this. If you’re outbid, there are many similar sets on eBay.
Price: £79.00 ($124) + £8.50 ($13) S&H
To prevent this list from becoming a predictable British lovefest, here’s a dab of Euro-spanking Americana: a 20"×17" giclée print of the Ford GT40 of Dan Gurney and A. J. Foyt leading a Ferrari on its way to victory at the 1967 24 Hours of Le Mans. Also in the background is Jim Hall’s Chaparral 2F. There, this list is now American. Happy holidays, y’all.
Photo Credit: shroudedrob (top). Product pictures are the property of the respective sellers.