It isn't cheap to customize your car. Believe it or not, young car enthusiasts spend $7.2 billion a year on car modifications just in the US. However, that takes a tragic turn when you realize that most of that money goes into money sinks like spoilers and turbos that will void the car's warranty and potentially harm the car in the long run.
Fortunately, there are plenty of modifications that can truly improve your vehicle's value and performance on the road. Let's talk about some of the best car upgrades you can make that are actually worth the money!
1. Stainless Steel Brake Lines
While this isn't the most visibly attractive vehicle upgrade you can make to your car, safety is the most aesthetic of all upgrades. If you want a performance upgrade, ditch the turbo and consider adding stainless steel brake lines. Rubber brake lines are flexible and less durable than metal, which means they don't last as long.
Since braided stainless steel lines are more resistant to damage, you can expect to keep them for as long as you have the car. The best part is that this upgrade should only run you about $200!
2. Remote Starter
Regardless of where you live, we don't have to tell you the benefits of a remote starter for your car. For as little as $200, you can enter into a warm comfortable car on a cold, dark, winter morning, or a nice cooled down vehicle on a hot summer day.
3. Premium Tires
If you really want to improve the look and automotive performance of your car, tires and wheels are the way to go. Upgrading your tires can offer a much better aesthetic to the entire vehicle, improve the vehicle's handling, increase fuel economy, and make for a safer ride altogether.
Tires are already expensive, so upgrading to premium tires really isn't much of a difference. The next time you need new tires, consider upgrading to a shiny, new set!
Seriously though, don't cheap out on your tires. They help with every aspect of your vehicle's performance, as they are the only part connecting your vehicle to the ground.
4. Rear Camera
We spend less than 1% of our driving time in reverse, and yet, 23% of all accidents happen when drivers are backing up. Adding a rear camera to your vehicle can help a lot with safety, as long as you aren't relying entirely on it. Yes, they are helpful for backing up, but they tell you nothing about the sides of your vehicle, which you will still need to pay attention to.
However, adding a rear camera to any vehicle could be a big selling point if you ever want to resell the car, and you'll get a lot of use out of it, especially if you live in a city! You could get one installed for as little as $50 or as much as $300 depending on the quality you want.
5. Limited Slip Differential
Many car owners will spend far more money on turbos and engine modifications to improve their vehicle's power. If your car doesn't come with a limited slip differential, consider installing one for a fraction of the price of a turbo.
While they aren't exactly cheap, often costing around $500, they can dramatically improve the efficiency of your vehicle. Without an LSD, your car may only be using one wheel to drive, giving an expensive turbo or engine mod limited results. An LSD ensures that you are using your car's existing power effectively.
6. Adjustable Sway Bar
Sway bars or anti-roll bars are what connect both sides of your car's suspension, and they prevent your car from leaning excessively while cornering. This can prevent a roll-over accident and dramatically improve your vehicle's handling when cornering or driving in harsh conditions. All cars have a sway bar on their vehicle, but some are better than others.
By having an adjustable sway bar, you can adjust it and test it out on the road until you're happy with the vehicle's handling. What's $300 if it could save your life?
7. Quality Shocks
Improving your car's suspension system is well worth the cost. A good set of shocks will run you around $700, making it the most expensive item on this list. However, not everybody has the money for these upgrades.
Luckily, there are plenty of European aftermarket parts that can save you a small fortune on parts like these. Good shock absorbers help keep your tires planted firmly on the pavement by absorbing the shocks (go figure) of varying road conditions.
We'd never recommend modifying your suspension system with lifts or anything like that, as it can harm your vehicle's handling and fuel economy. However, upgrading to a better set of shock absorbers can make a world of difference on the road, as well as protect your engine and transmission from excessive wear.
8. Free Upgrades
Sometimes, there are free things you can do to improve your car's performance. Whether it's finding free car items online, tightening some bolts, or simply improving your driving habits, you'd be surprised what you can do to extend the life of your vehicle at no cost. Keep up with routine maintenance, drive like you own the car, and pay attention to the needs of the car to determine your next upgrade.
From there, browse through our car parts for any vehicle you own. We sell Audi parts, Mercedes Benz parts, and so many other aftermarket parts for any upgrade you want to make.
Try These Car Upgrades Yourself
Now that you know some of the best car upgrades for serious car enthusiasts, consider making some modifications yourself and seeing what's best for you. With many of these, you can even test them out and adjust them to your liking, so there's no harm in trying.
Stay up to date with our latest automotive news and feel free to contact us with any questions or for help finding the right parts for your needs.