Car trackers are some of the best car equipment, gadgetry tools we have reviewed. Some of them are very easy to install, so are suitable for most, no matter what technological background you have. Why are they so good? Well, they can either help you keep your car, or, if it gets stolen, can help you retrieve it. We check out the best car tracker money can buy below.
Some GPS car trackers can even help you with lowering your insurance. How amazing is that? If you can purchase a tracker which is cheaper than how much you'll save on your insurance, it's a no brainer. It also means that you have a better chance of keeping your car or at least retrieving it if it is stolen.
Sim Card for GPS Tracker
We used a cheap GiffGaff pay as you go sim card, when we topped it up £10 we received a free £5 and due to only needing the messaging features of each car tracker we only used a couple of pounds of credit over the short period of testing.
Not Just For Security
You can use car gps trackers for keeping an eye on family members vehicles, with one of the trackers you can get notified when a speed you allocate on the device is done by the vehicle. Say for instance, your son or daughter has recently passed their driving test and are out driving your vehicle, the main family car. You can set an alert up which sends you a message if the car goes over 80mph, which, in the UK is against the law. The top speed you can do in the United Kingdom is 70mph on a motorway and some dual carriageways. We think this is great, as it extends the functionality of the car GPS trackers with other important features that you might actually need.
For Cars, Vans, Caravans, Boats
This car tracker, to your surprise is not just for cars. You can use this on any vehicle you would like. Some are fixed in place by wiring them to your vehicle and this means you can use some of their extra features. Others are just placed in secure locations in your car or vehicle so that they can't be found easily, they then use their own battery power.
You can use these in your boat or caravan as well if you have one and are worried it may get stolen.
Whatever vehicle it is you may wish to locate, the GPS trackers below we have reviewed will all help in some way or another.
How To Fit & Install a Car GPS Tracker
Here is a great tutorial on how to install and fit your chosen car tracker, this is a DIY video which goes in to great detail on how you fit a tracker yourself.
It was hard to rank the car gps trackers as they pretty much did the exact same job as the last. They all offered many extra functions on top of map location, their main difference being the price, this is why we have ranked the second cheapest as the best and continue in this fashion.
Be warned that if you wanted the extra functions you would need to wire them in, the Spy Tec which we ranked 2nd and the Rewire which we ranked 4th also works as personal tracking devices too.
|1||Review of GPS Car Tracker with GPRS and Vehicle Theft Protection System||4.3/5||££|
|2||Review of Spy Tec Real Time Car GPS Tracker||4.5/5||£££|
|3||Review of Covert Back2you Car GPS Tracker||4.4/5||££££|
|3||Review of Rewire GPS Car Tracker & Personal Tracking Device||4/5||££|
Review of GPS Car Tracker with GPRS and Vehicle Theft Protection System
Are you looking for a car gps tracker for your car or vehicle? This could be the tracker for you. This looks like an affordable security gadget that could help you out if your car is stolen.
This car tracker is made by back2you and is a tracker that you can install and wire up to your engine to enable extra security features which this tracker can manage.
If you want to help prevent your car being stolen or if it does get stolen and you wish to know exactly where it is, this car gps tracker will do just that, and more.
Just like the other gps car trackers we have reviewed, this one has the most important feature and with a simple phone call, you can find out exactly where your vehicle is. You will receive a message and if you are using a smart phone, will be able to view the location using google maps straight away.
The extra features you will get with this particular gps tracker are;
- Engine cut off, with this, you can message the tracker attached to your car and it will shut your engine off and stop the car. It only does this once the car travels below 20kmh for safety reasons, a very important feature. This is why this car tracker can be installed in to the car and wired up.
- Geo fencing means that you can set up an area that the car is allowed to be within, if the car or vehicle moves outside of this area, you will receive a text message.
- If you set up the stationary setting, this simple feature will message you when your car is no longer stationary, a very good security feature if your car will be parked for a long time.
- Finally, max speed notices can be set when you want to be warned of the cars top speed. This can be very important if you are fitting this car gps tracker to a family members vehicle and you wish to keep a check on their driving and that they are staying below the national speed limit.
- Comes with microphone so you can listen in/record to what is going on just by calling up the number of the simcard in the tracker.
- Alarm and immobiliser functions means that you can sound an alarm, even if you aren't anywhere near your car or vehicle.
Everything In The Box
The user manual leaves a lot to be desired, but using common sense, you shouldn't have too much of a problem with it. If you can't figure it out, you could always get a garage or electrician to install it for you so that you can take advantage of the extra features this gps car tracker provides.
Once installed, it continually keeps tabs on it's location and with the installed sim card you placed in to it, you can connect via your own phone and manage it's location and other features if you wish to use them.
You can even have up to 5 numbers linked to the device, so multiple people in the family, or friends even can keep track of the vehicle. This is especially good if you wish to use this tracker for a fleet of vans and the company needs multiple numbers looking after individual vans.
- A lot of features on it, you can use it just to track your van, car, motorcycle or other vehicle or use it's other features if you require.
- A great price for the extra security it gives.
- Once purchased, you can use a pay as you go sim card, register it, put it in your car tracker and off you go.
- If you wish to utilise all of the extra features, horn sound, immobilise, car top speed etc you will need to fully wire this up to your vehicle and an electrician may be required.
- The battery only lasts a few hours so you will need to at least wire this up to your vehicles main battery.
- Takes a long time to get everything right and fully set up your tracker.
This is not the quickest of security devices to install. You can use it stand alone, attach it to just a power supply (vehicles battery) or by fully wiring it up to your car. It has some amazing features, so you can use this as more than a vehicle location device. We are very impressed with this bit of kit, it just needs a bit of know how to get fully functioning and set up.
Review of Spy Tec Real Time Car GPS Tracker
A great looking car GPS tracker by SpyTec but there are some obvious downsides compared to other car GPS trackers we have reviewed. We go through how it works, what it can do for you and how it compares to other trackers further below.
The SpyTec GPS tracker is not an expensive tracker, but if you are to use it's full features, you will need to sign up to an additional monthly subscription, on top of how you manage the sim you use with it.
For example, once you have purchased the tracker, you also purchase a sim card to work inside the device. in the UK, we recommend using a pay as you go as you are only receiving text messages from it which means that a £10 top up should last a while, unless that is you wish to use it a lot. Then we would recommend a monthly contract, where you know you can send and receive updates from it as much as you like.
After this set up, if you wish to keep all data stored of the cars location, you can through SpyTec, but this is where the additional fee comes in, at £9 a month, they will keep all location information, where it has travelled from and too, how fast, length of stays at locations, etc.
This is the only other gps car tracker we have reviewed which actually has extra charges on top of what you pay for the sim card in the tracker. This though, is entirely optional and you do not have to do this, but to reap its full features it will cost extra.
Fitting The Car GPS Tracker
This is the simplest to fit out of all of the trackers we have seen but you need to purchase an extra magnetic and/or waterproof case if you are to put it hidden under your car or vehicle. The reason it is so easy to fit is because it is a stand alone item, it works straight out of the box, no wiring or anything is really needed.
There are many features with this car GPS tracker, most of them are controlled and received by messages from and to your phone. The sim card which you place in to your tracker can send back certain bits of information about what is happening to the car to your own phone, so you know what is going on and most importantly, where. Some of the features that are accessed by messaging are;
- A max speed notification, if you set up a speed of 75mph and the vehicle breaks that speed, you're notified.
- You can be warned when the car starts or stops.
- An important notification is when the tracker is low on battery, this will give you an advanced warning so you can take it from where it is and charge, either in your car or at home.
- You can set up Geo fencing on the SpyTec GPS app online and if your car moves out of this area, you will be warned.
As well as these 'standard' features, you also have access to a GPS Spy Tec platform, which gives you a couple of really powerful security features. One being live updates (within a few seconds), of where your vehicle is. This can be accessed using a smart phone, tablet or desktop, so a bit more advanced that just using messaging to control things. As well as this, you can set up the Geo fencing to keep track of the vehicle when it leaves an area. This is great if you're leaving a car in the same spot for a while or a family member has the vehicle and they are meant to be using it at a certain location.
Using The Car GPS Tracker
Now we've told you more about how it works and what you can do with it, we'd like to tell you a bit about how it is when using it.
The answer is a short one, it's very easy to use! As long as you know how to use a sim card, register it and install it in to the tracker. You can fit the tracker to the vehicle you like and that you are ok with messaging it with the information you require, that's pretty much it.
We only required to check that the car is still sat in a car park when we went for a meal and with a quick message, we were looking at a map of it's location to find it was still there.
The best thing is that if something where to happen to the vehicle, the tracker would be in place to help us locate it for up to about 2 weeks or more (depending on the battery life).
- Super easy to set up and install in to the vehicle.
- Battery lasts for a couple of weeks, or longer depending on what settings you have activated and wished to be notified about.
- We only spoke with customer service once just to check we had everything right and they were very helpful.
- Need to buy magnetic, waterproof case separately
- If you want the live tracking, to the second and that data to be stored in to Spy Tecs cloud for later use, that would cost you extra, on top of what the sim card you put in the tracker cost.
A mini, lightweight and portable car gps tracker that you could probably use other places or in other vehicles, not just in a car. We liked the features it had and how simple it is to use compared to others we have tested, which feel like they want to butter your toast as well as track your car.
Very happy with it if you only require it to keep tabs on where your vehicle is with sporadic messaging. It doesn't cost extra for this and the battery will last longer if you are using less features.
Review of Covert Back2you Car GPS Tracker
This is a top of the range gps car tracker that you can use in any vehicle you own and help you protect and locate your vehicle at any time, with a simple text message sent to the device you will receive a text back with a google maps link with the exact location of your car.
This is a super simple security gps tracker that you can use for your car. When you receive the item;
- make sure it's charged up
- register the sim card inside the gps tracker online
- fit the gps tracker in to your car, out of sight
- text the gps tracker to check the location of your car
If you have a smart phone, when you receive the text from the GPS tracker, you can view the location of your car using google maps app on your phone, it's that simple.
Thats it, this is definately a top of the range product, waterproof, rugged, feels well made and strong. Just make sure that when you fit it somewhere in your car, obviously out of sight, that it's not somewhere too exposed.
We are really impressed with this car gps tracker and is a great security tool to give you peace of mind if your car was ever to get stolen.
This car gps tracker is said to last up to 60 days, we haven't tested it for this long but the battery shows no sign of use after just a few days, which is exactly what you want. You can charge it in the car using a 12v charger or using a plug in your home. A great little feature of the tracker is that it can text your number when the battery is running low, so you don't always have to remember to charge it. This means you can charge in the car as you are driving along or in your home overnight if needs be.
Extra features also include max speed, jolts and area alert if the car or vehicle moves out of this set area.
- Easy to install and set up
- Very rugged and solid piece of equipment
- Peace of mind if your car or vehicle got stolen, you can trace where it is
- Battery lasts a very long time, more than others we have tested
- This is not the cheapest of car gps trackers
A useful tool to help protect your car from theft as you can find out it's location if your car is stolen. Very easy to set up and install and because of the great battery length, the only downside is that this is dependent on what set up you have. You may have to turn off the jolt and perimeter feature if you require the battery to last up to the suggested 2 months.
Review of Rewire GPS Car Tracker & Personal Tracking Device
Another car tracker, this one by Rewire, which gives you the option of viewing the location of your car or vehicle live by using an online service. This car tracker by Rewire also allows the basic messaging functions which you would expect, which you can run from a pay as you go sim card and keep the costs of running it low.
The rewire nano 102 GPS car tracker and personal tracker is tiny! It's about the size of a matchbox and this is one of it's best features. This is why you can use this as a personal tracker, as well as a car or vehicle tracker.
Like other trackers we have reviewed, you can choose to let it run stand alone, with it's own battery, or by connecting it to a 12v power supply within your car, under your bonnet. This way, you can be assured that the battery will never run out, as long as the battery it is using has a charge as well.
This tracker has the similar messaging functionality of other trackers out there, once you have installed your sim, which we talk about above, you can get location based messages from it to your mobile device and get pin point locations of the vehicle you have left the tracker in.
A feature we have mentioned on another car tracker is the microphone it has built in. If the device is left in a glove box or underneath a seat of your car, when you ring the gps tracker, it will answer the call and you can listen in to what is happening. This may not be a required feature for making sure your car is safe or listening in to thieves but could be good if you wanted to use the tracker for a different requirement. Don't worry, the tracker is completely silent, it does not have an in built speaker and this little black box will not make any one aware of what is happening. You can silently listen in using your own mobile phone.
This comes with a unique feature, GPSLive platform. By registering when you purchase the security tracker, you can view a live feed on a map through the platform. We were impressed by this and the subscription was not that much, if this feature is something you require it is definately worth it.
Geo fencing is included with this, so you can create a section or area and if the car moves out of this zone, you will be notified.
As well as the above, you can set up notifications or use the GPSLive platform for;
- Speeding, where you set up a max speed notification.
- Set up times of the day and if the car or vehicle moves out of these times you will be notified.
- Total mileage or over a certain time frame, you can get mileage details.
- You can get the average speed of the vehicle.
- Once installed, you can get information about the total drive time, so if you require this information and wish to know how long you've spent in your car, you can.
- With the platform, you will have access to the history of your car, where its been, its current location or where it was 3 days ago.
- When calling you can get a battery % left of the tracker which is great if you want to check it without taking it out of it's hidden spot.
We didn't test all of these features but the fact that they exist is great if you require more than just location at a given time.
Small, solid build that comes with a waterproof pouch if you wish to keep it outside of your car. The only downside is that the magnetic part was not very strong, this is a big problem if you require to keep it under the bonnet or somewhere on the external part of your car, it probably would fall off in time.
Do a few tests before you install it in a secret place in your car and take out the sim card and put it in to a spare phone to check it's credit. This way, with the sim card and plan you choose (pay as you go or contract), you can work out how much the messages cost and that way work out how many updates you can receive on the location before you need to top up. This is one of the biggest problems with the car trackers, which includes this Rewire tracker, once the simcard is in, we couldn't find a way of finding out how much credit was left using the pay as you go sim we had chosen.
- Very small car tracker so great for hiding in any part of your car or vehicle.
- Only payment is for the messaging from the sim card you install in to it, you can though choose to have a GPSLive subscription which is a great feature
- Very easy to install, no wires or cables, anyone can do it
- Battery does not last that long, you might be able to get 2 weeks out of it with limited updates back to your phone.
A great little car gps tracker by Rewire, we are very impressed with it, we just used a Giffgaff pay as you go sim card which came with a £5 credit. This was enough to keep us going and get details sent to our phone on the tracker/cars location. We would like it if the battery lasted longer so we could keep it in the car.