Just like that, another year has passed, and the holiday season has arrived. The sales are heating up as the weather cools, and we’re bringing you our best yet! This year, we have gifts on sale for everyone, whether a long-time enthusiast, a brand-new collector, or a parent looking to save some cash with DIYs. Check out our FCP Euro Gift Guide to bring home some surefire holiday winners this season.
2023 FCP Euro Gift Guide Navigation
|Gifts For The Detail Oriented
|Gifts For The Tool Collector
|Gifts Under $50
|Shop All Products On FCP Euro
Gifts For The Detail-Oriented
Oh, the detail-oriented. While they love cars for how they sound and feel, keeping them showroom clean gets them going. Car care products have come a long way since the origins of tire shine and carnauba wax, with industry leaders like Gyeon and Griots leading the charge. Some of their most popular products are ready to take your car care game above and beyond.
There’s no sense in washing your car if you aren’t going to dry it afterward. Letting the water evaporate leaves water spots around the vehicle, and household towels and rags can be rough on a painted surface, so it’s best to use a dedicated automotive drying towel, like Griot’s Extra-Large PFM® Edgeless Drying Towel.
The key to any good towel is its ability to absorb and hold water, and that’s where the XL PFM towel from Griot’s shines. Its 1120 grams per square meter marks it one of the thickest and most absorbent towels on the market, while the 29" x 36" size ensures plenty of drying surface to go around. Plus, its edgeless design means there is nothing but soft, water-absorbing material from end to end, eliminating any scratch-creating potential. If you end up with any drying towel, there isn’t a reason it shouldn’t be this one.
Modern plastic headlight lenses are durable, lightweight, and inexpensive to produce—all good things for the consumer and manufacturer. However, constant exposure to the elements eventually takes a toll on their finish. Light and heat are particularly cruel, hazing and microscopically cracking the outside of the lens. If left for too long, you’ll need to replace them. But catch the deterioration early, and you can stem the wear with this Griot’s headlight lens restoration kit. It’s an all-in-one, providing the nitrile gloves, necessary compounds, and sanding discs in one easy-to-use package. The restoration process is very straightforward, so with a little time and patience, anyone can have their foggy headlights looking new quickly.
Leather upholstery’s resistance to spills and dirt makes it far more durable than a cloth or velour-type fabric. However, leather isn’t impervious to contamination and will absorb all sorts of smells and odors from the surrounding environment. Other factors like mold and mildew can leave their noxious stench, too, putting a damper on what could be an otherwise clean interior. To solve an issue like that, your best bet is to pick up Griot’s Odor Neutralizing Leather Cleaner.
The Odor Neutralizing Leather Cleaner uses a pH-balanced formula proven to remove all types of stains and denim transfer while working deep into the upholstery to eliminate unpleasant odors. Simply use a microfiber towel to work the product into the leather or vinyl and be free from unwanted and unpleasant odors. Once you finish cleaning, pair this product with Griot’s Leather Care or Leather Rejuvenator for the ultimate leather treatment.
Cleaning wheels regularly is the only way to prevent harmful deposits from embedding in the paint. Brake pads, regardless of their compound, will release dust containing super fine metallic and carbon particles that grab onto the wheel while you drive. They’ll eat through the paint if left long enough, forcing you to strip and refinish the wheels. Instead of dropping thousands of dollars on refinishing, grab a bottle of this Gyeon Design Iron Wheel Cleaner.
Gyeon’s formula combines traditional wheel cleaner with an Iron fallout remover. While typically separate products, Gyeon has combined the two for an all-in-one solution for all wheel types. Use is simple; you only need to spray it on and rinse it. Use your favorite agitating brush to loosen the tough stuff if contaminants persist. From there, you’ll have clean wheels to dirty once again—that is unless you protect them first.
Did you know that after cleaning your car, its paint can become debris-filled? Similar to our bodies, the paint has tiny pores where contaminants from the road will embed themselves, creating a rough and compromised surface. It’s why wax became so popular back then, but now modern formulas provide far better protection for much less work. Gyeon’s WetCoat is a perfect example, as it only needs to be sprayed on and rinsed off. Its primary job is to seal whatever surface it’s sprayed onto, including glass, wheels, and trim, and provide a hydrophobic coating to repel water. Dirt and harmful particles are no match for body or wheel paint after just one application.
Gifts For The Tool Collector
Servicing your vehicle is an engaging experience and a great way to save money. Many non-driveline-related jobs are simple enough that repairs can be made in a driveway, assuming the right tools are available. Support your favorite DIYer with the tools below and enjoy the extra time you’ll have with them after they finish their work quicker than ever before.
For the money, you’re not likely to find a better battery charger. The MXS 5.0 features an 8-step charging sequence and a unique reconditioning mode with built-in temp sensing capabilities for the ultimate battery charging setup. AGM and EFB batteries are also supported by the sealed unit, which will reach up to 160AH of charging depending on battery size. You’ll no longer have to hope your old battery charger keeps your classic battery alive throughout the winter; upgrade to the MXS 5.0.
Big trunks are great for storage, but not necessarily when you have smaller, delicate items. While BMW branded, this collapsable box will work in every trunk to keep those items safe. Being black, it’ll blend right in, and the velcro pads will keep it stuck in place. Don’t overthink it. It's an easy winner.
Basic code readers are necessary for any car owner, but the MX808 furthers its functionality. For starters, it operates as any code reader would. Plug it into the vehicle, and it automatically reads the VIN to detect any manufacturer-specific codes. Beyond that, it will read every other code and come back with whatever the problem is. The MX808 helps during servicing, too. Modern Mercedes and BMWs require the electronic parking brake to be retracted for servicing, and the MX808 can make that happen. It can also help code new fuel injectors, bleed the ABS, reprogram keys, reset and program tire pressure monitors, and read live data in real-time. Anyone servicing their European car made in the last ten years would benefit greatly from having an MX808 in their toolbox.
There are many sides to owning a Volkswagen or Audi product. On one hand, they’re cool, affordable cars with tons of potential; on the other hand, check engine lights. Such is life with aging vehicles and endless tinkering, so you need to have the right tools on hand. VAGCOM is the ultimate tool for reading and coding the ECU and various modules within all VW and Audi vehicles. It’s fully licensed for the VCDS software and is compatible with three VINs.
Somewhere along the line, wheel bolts became the norm among European manufacturers. Whether cost-related or supposed ease of use, they can make removing and mounting wheels a real hassle. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be with this set of wheel hangers from CTA Manufacturing. In the set are four groups of hangers with different thread pitches and thicknesses for a large range of applications. With the wheels supported by the hangers, you won’t have to worry about supporting it while hoping you don’t cross-thread a wheel bolt.
As someone who has extended and recent experience with a creeper seat, I can’t begin to sing the praises of its benefits on my lower back. However, the seat can be so much more, as proven here by Performance Tool. PT stuffed a small toolbox under the seat to revolutionize the creeper seat game. Strong enough to support 350 lbs, the toolbox creeper seat features three drawers on roller-bearing slides. A small magnetic tray can be folded down on each side to hold whatever you need.
Gifts Under $50
Too often, we get wrapped up in a gift’s price tag rather than what it might mean to someone. Luxury and flash are cool, but usefulness is far more valuable to many. Here are some of the most cost-effective gifts we offer. From slightly specialty to very basic, these are all winners.
Obsessing over a clean engine bay and a properly serviced vehicle is always warranted. Both are great ways to prolong the condition of your car, and this no-spill oil funnel kit is the perfect gift to help out. The funnel portion can hold up to 2L of oil, while the bayonet-style adapter will fit into nearly every modern European application. Oil changes will be quicker and cleaner than ever. Pick yours up today.
Daily driving brings many hard miles, long trips, and occasional missed services. As such, our road warriors can be subject to more frequent error messages from the car’s computer. The MaxiAP scanner from Autel is the perfect pairing for any daily driver, thanks to its incredibly compact size and affordability. Specifically, the MaxiAP is a small BlueTooth-enabled device that connects to your smartphone and allows you to perform every scan and service-related task without the bulky, professional-grade tools. Reset engine lights while recording live data, retract the electric parking brake for service, and flash your tire pressure monitoring system over to the winter wheelset, all from your phone.
Maybe you’re looking for something more heavy-duty than the fabric BMW crate. In that case, this Mercedes shopping crate is the gift for you. Made of plastic, it’s like a milk crate you’d see full of old vinyl records. Measuring 2x13x18”, it’ll easily hold a few quarts of oil, a roll of shop towels, and a first aid kit. Then, it’ll fold flat and out of the way when empty.
Don’t tackle a major mechanical job without a torque wrench. Many jobs on your European car require accurate fastening torque during the reassembly process, where inaccurate tightening, either under or over, can lead to failure. Depending on the situation, that could easily result in catastrophic engine damage or an accident in the case of suspension components. This Sunex 3/8” drive torque wrench is rated for 10 to 80 ft-lbs of torque, making it a good all-around torque wrench for some of the smaller bolts on your suspension and engine.
Hard-to-reach places like behind dashboards and the tops of fuel tanks can present numerous challenges to even the most seasoned DIYers. To make matters more difficult, vehicles' packaging has become more crowded with the inclusion of so much electronic technology that there are more hard-to-reach places than ever before, so having a set of stubby screwdrivers is a great way to avoid any space-related hiccups. This set comes with a pair of Phillips-head and flat-head drivers with differentiating tip sizes for use with a range of fasteners, making this mini stubby screwdriver set a perfect stocking stuffer for less than three dollars.
Nothing is worse than dropping a bolt, nut, or any other small piece into the engine bay. With all of our luck, it’ll have found itself the tightest recess possible because why not? Luckily, you don't have to struggle to remove it if you have this pick-up tool set from Performance Tool. It includes a long and flexible magnet to recover whatever it is you lost. Once you’ve retrieved your parts, you can stick them in the included magnetic tool tray to keep them safe until reinstallation.
Car and motorsports-obsessed writer/editor for FCP Euro's DIY Blog. Constantly dreaming of competing behind the wheel or searching for another project. Owner of a turbo Subaru Forester and a ratty Porsche 914, neither of which are running.