The best holiday gifts are the ones that get used again and again and again — or take us to a very happy place.
With that in mind, here is Linkage’s 2022 holiday gift guide. We wanted to keep the gifts in this listing at a fairly modest price — but still have real meaning for everyone involved.
Most of all, we hope you have a wonderful holiday season!
Tiny Blasts from the Past
Just about all of us have Hot Wheels or Matchbox cars in our past. Some of us still have the little toy cars — our first cars, really. I watched my daughter play with my Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars when she was young.
It’s easy to find vintage Matchbox and Hot Wheels cars on eBay, and some of them are in new condition. Your dad or mom may not have been able to score a Hot Wheels “Splittn’ Image” during the 1968 holiday season, but why not now?
You can spend thousands of dollars on a rare toy car — or just a couple of bucks. Toys that are still in their original packaging tend to be much more expensive than used examples — which is kind of like the collector car market these days.
I have collected Matchbox cars since childhood, and I easily found most of my favorites on eBay a few nights ago.
Drive on over to www.eBay.com and get lost in these little cars.
“The Archaeological Automobile”
Miles Collier is one of the great car collectors of our age, and he’s also a significant scholar. The Miles Collier Collections at the Revs Institute in Naples, FL, consists of more than 100 rare and significant cars.
But, most importantly, Collier is a wonderful, conversational writer, and his book, “The Archaeological Automobile” is 391 pages of amazing stories, rare photos — and a deep, entertaining dive on why cars have shaped our world for the past 100 years. Collier also explores the world of car collecting, with brisk, thoughtful sections on how formerly trashed cars became coveted collectibles, what makes a car collectible, whether a historically significant car should be restored — and on and on and on.
This gorgeous book is a journey into a special world, and it is hard to put down. When I got my copy, I lugged it onto a flight from Portland, Oregon to Jacksonville, Florida. I was on my way to the Amelia Island Concours, and the flight was full of car people.
A guy asked me why I was toting such a massive book.
“I just can’t stop reading it,” I said.
At that point I was on page 217, and Collier was telling me all about finding an all-original 1967 factory team Alfa Romeo GTA. Collier had been searching for such a car for years. In a way, he didn’t expect to find one — but he hoped.
This is what he wrote about his reaction to finally finding such a car:
“That is, until the untouched, all original, and 100 percent complete GTA survivor tripped all the lights like a slot machine gone mad.”
You won’t be able to stop reading as well. This book is a joy — and the most significant book on car collecting in years. It is $149.95, and it is the perfect gift for any car collector. You can order a copy (or copies) at www.TheArchaeologicalAutomobile.com.
“The Classic Car Auction Yearbook”
Have you ever bought a collector car? Ever sold one? Thinking about buying one in 2023?
All this why the “Classic Car Auction Yearbook 2020-2021,” by Adolfo Orsi is a great gift for anyone who collects cars.
For 27 years, this valuable, readable book has tracked collector-car auction results — and given readers excellent market analysis from experts, including the leaders of top-tier auction houses. The latest edition, now available, tracks sales from September 1, 2021 to August 31, 2022.
This year’s edition has a terrific chapter that has detailed reports on the cars that made up the top 10 sales. These reports take a pretty deep dive — in a short entry — into what makes these cars so special. The story on the 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR “Uhlenhaut Coupe” is fascinating reading. Oh yeah, the car sold for a stunning $142.6 million through RM Sotheby’s.
The “Classic Car Auction Yearbook” puts the 2021-2022 collector-car auction season in your hands, and this handsome book looks great on a coffee table or on your bookshelf.
The best part of the book is the Auction Season Results. Cars are alphabetically listed by brand, so you can look up every Ferrari — or AMC Pacer — that crossed an auction block in the past year.
This is a reference book, but the results are fun to read, and you get a good sense of current trends in collector-car pricing.
I save every one of my copies of this series, and I use them often. So, yes, this is a great gift for any car collector — or for yourself.
The book is on sale at www.autobooks-aerobooks.com or call 1.818.845.0707. The price is $95.
Fun with Jay Leno
Okay, why are Jay Leno’s Garage car cleaning products on this list? They will not last for a year, as you will keep slathering these potions onto your cars.
Yet, they will protect your cars — and help fuel one of the most-underrated experiences in the car world — washing and shining up your ride on a weekend afternoon.
If you’re lucky, a kid or friend will be there to help you hose down the car, give it a shampoo with the Jay Leno’s Garage Vehicle Wash or Wash + Wax and then rinse and towel it dry.
Then, you get out the Quick Detailer and a few soft microfiber towels. Spray this stuff on and then buff it dry with the towel. The car’s finish will feel slick and clean under the towel. It doesn’t take long, and kids love this part of the job, as they can see the transformation happen.
When the job is done, the car will gleam and glow. This is easy and fun.
In a couple of weeks, you get to do it again. Most of the bottles are about $10. This stuff is made in the United States. Buzz on over to www.lenosgarage.com to get connected.