Range Rover event seating and SKODA umbrella
Beth Twigg

Beth Twigg

Beth is our Content and Paid Media Specialist, tasked with creating great articles to keep you both entertained and informed. She has two years previous experience, but has been writing and scribbling for much longer.

The quirkiest car features from vehicles past and present

When you’re looking at car leasing, you probably have a fairly standard list of features in mind that you’d like.

Four wheels, some windows, a boot, air con, infotainment system, steering wheel – the bog-standard bits and pieces that make a car a car.

But have you considered those little extras that give a car some character?

From recreating the night sky to fly fishing accessories to espresso machines to boot showers, we’ve rounded up some of the quirkiest features that cars – modern and discontinued – have had.

Modern quirky features

Mercedes-Benz E-Class

Mercedes-Benz S-Class and E Class: Energising comfort control

Combining climate control, ambient lighting, seat massage and scent, Mercedes-Benz’s energising comfort control (available in high-end models like the S-Class and E-Class) is designed to create the right driving mood for you and your passengers.

Much like the right playlist creates the right vibe for a long road trip, so does Mercedes’ multi-sensory experience.

We’ve not tried it in a traffic jam on the M25, but we’ll take anything to make that a nicer experience.

BMW: Gesture control

Available in select BMW models, the gesture control allows you to control features like volume and navigation with a mere flick of your hand.

Like any good wizard, a clockwise twirl of the finger will increase the volume of your favourite radio station, while a swipe to the right will reject that call that’s got in the middle of your car-aoke.

It’s not magic, but you’ll feel magic.

And that’s what really counts.

Rolls Royce starlight headliner

Rolls-Royce: Starlight headliner

There’s no denying that Rolls-Royce have one of the most beautiful quirky features on the list.

The starlight headliner feature essentially turns the inside of the car into your very own night sky, with hundreds of fiber-optic lights acting as the stars.

And, best of all, you can customise your sky, so you’re always looking at your favourite stars, or surrounded by the night of a special date.

It’ll transport you straight back into your childhood bedroom with the stick on, glow in the dark stars, but without the fear of them falling on your face.

Range Rover: Event seating

Have you ever driven your Range Rover to an event, say, your child’s rugby match, and forgotten to bring your fold-up camping chairs?

Bit niche, granted, but if you ever find yourself in this predicament, you’ll be glad that you’ve added the Range Rover Autobiography’s optional event seating.

Finished in a choice of either ebony or tan Windsor leather, this retractable bench turns your boot into a plush seating area, before folding away under the boot floor.


Bentley Bentayga mulliner fly fishing accessories

Bentley: Falconry, fly fishing, and the world’s most expensive car clock

If you have a niche interest, Bentley are likely to cater to it.

The Bentayga options list is crammed with some of the most unusual features we’ve ever seen, including a Mulliner falconry kit (complete with perch, tether, and storage area for your bird of prey) and a Mulliner fly fishing kit (with four fishing rods in their own leather-trimmed tubes, a cool box for your catch, and a ‘Master Tackle Station’ for those ever important accessories).

Not into fly fishing or falconry?

If you’ve got a cool £117,000 burning a hole in your pocket, you can instead opt to add the Mulliner Tourbillon by Breitling clock.

Machined out of solid gold with eight diamonds marking the hours, you can choose between mother-of-pearl or black ebony for the face.

Beautiful? Certainly. But nearly enough to buy a second Bentayga? Yes.

McLaren 720S: Folding display

With the 720S, McLaren have tackled one of the most pressing issues of our automotive times: what to do when the drivers display is so jam-packed with information that it just starts to annoy you.

McLaren know this.

So to fix it, minimise distractions and maximise visibility, they’ve made it so that the driver’s display screen can be folded away into the dash, replaced by a second, much smaller screen that reveals only the most basic of information.

Genesis GV60 crystal sphere

Genesis GV60: Crystal sphere

Perhaps one of the most useless features ever created, there’s no denying that the crystal sphere in the Genesis GV60 is dead cool.

Essentially, it’s a glass ball that’s set into the centre console and glows when you approach the car with the key. When you start the car, the sphere rotates in and transforms into the rotary-knob gear selector, which glows the same colour as the spere.

It all feels very The Blue Crystal, which is one of the best plays a primary school can put on.

But Genesis claims it’s not just delightfully useless.

The sphere does act as a safety feature: when it’s retracted, the car is on and ready to drive. If the car is charging, the sphere won’t rotate, saving you from driving off with the cable attached.

Ford Puma: Megabox

Got a big family or muddy hobbies?

The Ford Puma megabox is exactly what you need.

It’s a lower load compartment in the boot, providing an extra 80L of boot space and able to take items up to 115cm tall.

The box is also waterproof, with a drainage plug in the bottom so you can easily clean it (or hose items down in it.) Excellent if you’re often transporting muddy wellies, football boots, or really anything else you don’t want to get all over the back seats.

BYD ATTO 3 interior details

BYD ATTO 3: The quirkiest interior?

The BYD ATTO 3 is the definition of business on the outside, party on the inside.

To look at, you’d never know that the pretty sensible exterior of the brand-new EV housed such fun features, with nearly everything you put your hand on in the cabin having some sort of quirky twist.

Air vents modelled after weight plates? Check. Gear selector that looks like a treadmill? Check. Guitar string door pockets that actually let you play a tune? You got it – check.

Even the touchscreen rotates, so you can have it in either landscape or portrait.

A BYD ATTO 3 lease is one of the best around.

Audi and Fiat: Espresso machine

Perhaps more weirdly for the German manufacturer (but making total sense for the Italian one), both the Fiat 500L and pretty much any Audi model can be equipped with an on-the-go espresso maker.

The Audi model plugs into the 12V outlet, while the Fiat machine sits in a powered cupholder, but the mobile coffee machine for both brands can produce piping hot espresso in a matter of minutes.

While you can only use it while the car is safely parked – no mid-traffic jam coffee breaks here – if you like a little coffee when you’re on a long journey, but don’t want to pay service station prices, this is an excellent compromise.

The Audi package even comes complete with Audi-branded carrying cases, two espresso cups, 18 pods and a cleaning cloth.

SKODA: Umbrellas and ice scrapers

Ever one of the most sensible brands, SKODA’s quirky features are less quirky and more, well, useful.

SKODA knows that there’s a high chance you’ve not checked the weather forecast before you’ve left the house – and we live in Britain.

There is more than a bit of a chance that you could be caught in a torrential downpour without much notice.

No bother, your faithful SKODA lease will have umbrellas in the door pockets, ready to protect your ‘do from the mizzly weather.

There’s even an ice scraper under the fuel cap, if you get stuck in the winter.

Historical quirky features

Volvo S80

Volvo S80: Anti-kidnapping heartbeat sensor

We’re not entirely sure what was going on at Volvo for them to add this feature to the S80, but it is definitely a quirky one.

Volvo equipped the car with a sensor that could detect a heartbeat.

And no, the car isn’t making sure you’re still alive. It was so that you could, as you approached the car, know whether or not there was already someone inside with a signal transmitted directly to your key fob.

Needless to say, this one didn’t take off.

1984 Toyota Van: Ice maker

Now this is one that we wish they’d bring back.

The 1984 Toyota Van which, yes, was just called the Van, was designed and marketed to be a family vehicle.

And what does a family vehicle need more than anything else?

Obviously, an ice maker.

The size of a shoebox, this handy little device even came equipped with spill-proof ice trays so you could enjoy a cold beverage no matter how far from home you were.

Volkswagen Beetle steering wheel vase

Volkswagen Beetle: Steering wheel vase

One of the cutest features – and arguably the most useless – the Volkswagen Beetle steering wheel vase.


A vase that sits behind the steering wheel.

Not very big, mind you. No fancy bouquets here. But if you fancy popping in a couple of your favourite blooms, or you need somewhere to stash a pen, quite handy all the same.

Honda CR-V: Boot shower

Buried deep in the options list for the very first Honda CR-V was the ability to add a shower attachment to the car.

Powered by the 12V socket in the boot, it was advertised as being useful for hosing down muddy boots. Also useful, we suppose, if you’ve been on a particularly muddy walk and don’t want the dog getting the back of your seats all mucky.

But quite low to the ground for a shower.

Not much use if you’ve been caught short camping, and need an emergency body wash.

Dodge La Femme

1955 Dodge La Femme: Handbag and accessories

The Dodge La Femme was launched in 1955 and ostensibly marketed as a car ‘for women.’

And what do women need?

A pink car that comes equipped with its own handbag and all the accessories you could ever need.

While the colour is very pretty, being given a handbag to go with your car does feel a little patronising. Undeniably quirky though – the sort of thing that could only be dreamt up in a post-war world looking to a brighter future full of pocket combs and lipstick.

It even had a compartment on the back of the driver’s seat for a raincoat, rain hat and umbrella, which, granted, is much more useful than a handbag full of bits you’ve not chosen.

1981 Datsun Maxima: Voice warning system

The first car in the US to come with a voice warning system, the Datsun Maxima would give you alerts like ‘please turn off the lights.’

As the tech expanded over the years, the car would even thank you if you complied with its demands.

While you can ask your car to do all sorts of things these days if it’s equipped with voice control, it would be quite fun if the car could talk back to you. Like a sentient robot, without the taking over the world aspect.

Do you know what the most popular car features are?