kilometer magazine

celebrating european cars and motorcycles


km : Equipped


28 November 2011

Another Thanksgiving holiday has come and gone, and with it another Black Friday. It’s time to put down the turkey leftovers and get back to work. Or at least pretend to be back to work while you do what everyone else is doing today — hit your browser and start searching in earnest for all the gifts still on your list.

For this year’s Cyber Monday Gift Guide, we looked back to the golden days of motorsport for inspiration. Everything on this year’s list recalls the glory days, when men were men and cars were cars, and the two often killed each other on the racetrack. Hemingway would approve.

As we travel to Europe throughout the year, we always have an eye open for those great products that make us feel good about our favorite car or motorcycle, team or driver. Some of the items we’ve selected may only be available from European sources, but we assure you they’re worth the additional wait and postage.

Race-Tags Nurburgring Keyring

The ‘Ring. The Nordschleife. The Green Hell. Really, what more needs to be said about Germany’s (perhaps the world’s) most legendary racetrack? The Nurburgring has been thrilling drivers since the late 1920s, with its 154 turns in 13 miles. And while it’s open to the public, relatively few enthusiasts will ever get to realize their dreams of laying down a fast lap on its holy asphalt.

To help keep the dream alive, or perhaps serve as an endearing memento for those lucky bastards who’ve had the chance, Race-Tags has created a pocket-size version of the track as a keychain. Laserjet-cut from T304 stainless steel, the keychain will hold up to a lifetime of use, just in case you never make it to northern Germany. Other great tacks are also available, including Laguna Seca, Willow Springs, Sebring, Road Atlanta and Lime Rock.

Vintage Racing T-Shirts

Just when you think you couldn’t possibly need another t-shirt, you see one you just have to own. That’s the way we felt when we saw the latest from Los Angeles designer Nicolas Hunziker. He’s captured many of the historic images from racing’s past and reinterpreted them as graphic tees. The subject list is deep, covering Porsche, Mini, BMW, Gulf Racing, and many others.

Beyond the stunning graphic presentations— and really, what does the Gulf livery not look good on? — Hunziker’s shirts are a refreshing departure from the same old sweat-shop rags that so often serve as canvas for wearable art. The shirts are made from organic cotton and they’re printed in the US with eco-wise inks, and are produced under official license.

Numerous automotive art and apparel vendors carry the collection, but we’ve found the official website to be the best place to get your fix.

Jaguar E-Type USB Drive

If you’re like us, you probably have USB memory sticks by the dozen cluttering your desk drawers. Needless to say, we don’t often get worked up over them, but when we saw this one in the unmistakeable Jaguar E-Type form, we though it stood out.

As part of the 50th anniversary of the sexy cat, Jaguar minted this little chrome-plated drive as a bit of functional office art. Whether you load it up with data (it holds 4 gigs) or just park it on your desk, it’s sure not to get lost among the clutter.

Available from Jaguar’s online store, which list its prices in British Pounds (£25) or Euros (€28.45). Your local Jaguar center may also stock this one.

Audi Quattro Messenger Bag

We saw this bag in Frankfurt this summer, and were instantly taken back to the early days of Audi’s rally domination. This vinyl shoulder bag is decorated in the classic Quattro color scheme, complete with the “football” motif logo as well as the Audi Sport logo in its original colors.

With two zippered compartments, the bag (28x32x15 cm) is a useful way to show off your enthusiasm for old-school Qauttros. Or maybe your secret crush on Michele Mouton.

Either way, you’ll have to order this one from Europe, as Audi North America isn’t currently offering it in its catalog. Priced at €35 plus shipping, it’s a fairly modest indulgence for a rare piece of swag.

Bentley Wheel Spinner Cufflinks

Face it, beyond a nice timepiece, guys have few options when it comes to tasteful jewelry. Especially when it comes to automotive themed pieces. Cufflinks are the rare exception, and this silver-plated
pair from Bentley are nice enough to make you consider buying your first French-cuffed shirt.

Based on the center wheel spinner from the legendary 8-liter Bentleys of the 1930s, these cufflinks are subtle, substantial and classy. Just like a Bentley, of course.

Available from Bentley’s online store and presumably your local Bentley dealer (you do have a local Bentley dealer, don’t you?), they’re listed at £60, making them perhaps the most affordable accessory you can get from Crewe.

Triumph Steve McQueen Motorcycle Jacket

Sure, everyone knows Steve McQueen raced Porsches at LeMans and Sebring, but he was also a master on two wheels. Triumph was his bike of choice, and in 1964 (six years before he filmed Le Mans) he entered the greuling International Six Days Trial in what was then East Germany, representing the United States.

This special edition jacket, offered exclusively through Triumph Motorcycles, is a replica of the one he wore during that 1964 event. But rather than waxed cotton, it’s made of modern materials, making it waterproof and breathable all at once. It also features removable elbow and shoulder protectors and a removable quilted liner. This one’s available online or at your local Triumph motorcycle dealer.

Porsche Design 917 Salzburg Chronograph

Porsche’s 917 race cars were unbeatable in their day. to commemorate the incredibly fast and reliable Rennwagen, Porsche has released and entire line of 917 products, all wearing the red and white livery from Hans Herrmann and Richard Atwood’s Team Salzburg car.

The 917 Salzburg chronograph is crafted of stainless steel and sapphire glass and includes two bands: black leather and the red-and-white textile band shown here. Measuring 43 mm, it uses a Swiss quartz movement and incorporates a 30-minute stopwatch.

Only 917 examples of this watch are being made, and it’s sure to get attention. Available online or through Porsche dealers.

Comments are closed.