6 gadgets all drivers should have in their cars

Drive better without spending thousands. Photo: Supplied

From self-driving cars to electric cars to smart cars, there are more options than ever when it comes to getting a new ride.

But before you shell out the big bucks, you may be surprised by the difference one gadget can make in your car.

INSIDER found 6 gadgets that are actually useful on the road. Whether you’re looking for a gift or hoping to teach your old car some new tricks, there’s something on this list that every driver can appreciate:

All prices are in Australian dollars.

For a more discreet option, try Maxboost's magnetic car mount which hides in your air vent.

Compatible with all phones and mini tablets.

To use Maxboost's car mounts, attach one to an air vent in your car. Then, stick the included magnetic pad to the inside of your phone case. Slip your phone case back on, and place your phone directly over the car mount.

You can also swivel the phone in any direction while it's still attached to the car mount.

Maxboost Air Vent Car Mount (Pack of 2), $10.80

IPOW's Safety Hammer might just save your life after a car accident.

All drivers should have this tool in their cars.

In case of emergencies on the road, it's important that you can escape quickly out of your car.

For just $US10, you get two of these life-saving safety hammers. Use the razor blade on one end to cut off seat belts and the stainless steel hammer on the other end to smash through car windows.

IPOW Car Safety Hammer, $13.50

Automatic connects your car to your phone, so you can check your engine, get emergency help, and more.

Just plug it into your car's OBD-II port.

Automatic's adaptor lets you read and understand the data in your car's onboard computer.

Use Automatic's free mobile app -- available on both Apple and Android phones -- to see what's wrong with your enginge, check trip mileage, call for help during emergencies, and more.

You can also download more apps from the App Gallery and even connect your car to your Amazon Echo.

Automatic Connected Car Adaptor, $77.70

Simple and dirt-cheap, TEKTON's digital tire gauge instantly measures your tire pressure.

Features a backlit display, so you can use it at night, too.

If you're tired of trying to interpret an analogue tire gauge accurately, you might want to switch to this digital one instead.

To get an instant, accurate reading of your tire pressure, turn the device on and push the nozzle onto your tire's valve stem. You can also choose from four measurement ranges, including PSI (0-100), bar (0-7), kPa (0-700), and kg/cm² (0-7).

TEKTON Digital Tire Gauge, $14.60

Use Anker's portable charger to make sure your phone never dies on the road again.

Available in red or blue.

Another Amazon best seller, Anker's PowerDrive 2 has two USB ports so you can charge two devices at the same time. Customers love its compact design and how quickly it charges their phones.

Anker PowerDrive 2 Car Charger, $U13.50

And this waterproof seat cover keeps your car safe from your pets.

Protect your car from dirt, dander, scratches, and more.

If you plan to bring your dog along on your next road trip, camping trip, or summer hike, you may want to get one of these waterproof seat covers first -- especially if you have a brand new car.

AmazonBasics Waterproof Seat Cover for Pets, $27

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