Review: The iCar by Corgi – Possibly the worst iPod accessory EVER - Macenstein

Review: The iCar by Corgi – Possibly the worst iPod accessory EVER

Do you know someone who owns an iPod?
Do you hate them?

Well, if the answer was “Yes“, then we may just have the perfect Christmas gift suggestion.

The iCar, by expert model manufacturer Corgi, is an interesting, if unnecessary idea; take a 1/24 scale model of a Cadillac Escalade, pimp it out with some lights, hydraulics, and working spinner wheels. Then, slap it on top of a fairly cheap speaker system with a headphone jack, and then call it an iPod accessory.

If the iCar sounds cool, then I apologize. Apparently my sarcasm did not read very well in print. Let me be clear, YOU MUST STAY AWAY FROM THE iCar.


The iCar only costs $29.99, so you may not be expecting the sound coming out of the iCar to be “all that”, and you’d be right. The iCar is a victim of trying to reach the sub-$30 sweet spot the American wallet fondly reserves for “throw away” gag gifts. I have heard $30 speakers WITHOUT a model of a Cadillac Escalade mounted to the top that sounded much better. By trying to combine a motorized, light up car model AND a speaker system, Corgi has had to make some sacrifices here.

The biggest problem with the iCar (and there are a couple big problems to choose from) is the horrible sound. By “horrible sound”, you may think I mean the sound coming from the speakers. While that IS bad, what I was referring to is the grinding sounds of the cheap motors in the iCar, and the high-pitched squealing of the spinner wheels. Since words may not be able to do this justice, please watch the videos below for an example.

Yeah, OK, it is funny, but only for about the 42 seconds this clip plays. Do you really want to listen to your music this way?

Rollin’ at night. A sample of the iCar’s flashing lights. Note, the lights don’t seems to distract from the annoying motor grinding…

Well, if you made it through the first 2 clips, you are strong. But the built-in rap song will defeat you.


There was very little thought given to the styling of the iCar. The Escalade model itself is fine, however the speaker pedestal it is fastened to is as bland and un-iPodlike as it gets. Three big, cheap-looking buttons dominate the front of the unit, and these control the volume and whether the iCar “dances” to your music or not. There is no dock connector (as you might expect for $29.99). Instead there is simply a mini stereo jack for your iPod to hook into. This means the iCar will work with pretty much ANY generic MP3 player and not just the iPod, so you may say Corgi doesn’t necesarily have to cater to the iPod crowd. However, Corgi does call it the “iCar”, and has a picture of a 4th generation iPod Photo on the box. One has to assume this is meant to be by and large an iPod accessory, yet it lacks any hint of the iPod’s style.

As I mentioned, there is thankfully a button which can stop the iCar from moving, flashing, and spinning its wheels, allowing you to use the iCar as simply a passive speaker system. However, the odds are you will not want to. The sound delivered from the iCar’s speakers is tiny, shrill and just plain bad.

The iCar requires 6 AA batteries to run, but there is an optional AC adapter you can purchase as well. Unfortunately I cannot tell you how long the iCar’s battery life is, as I could not keep the iCar on for more than 40 minutes or so in my testing. It was just too annoying. The Escalade iCar is available in both black and white, and there is also a Nissan Silvia model if you would rather return THAT model to the store instead.

As far as I can tell, the only reason you would choose to buy this is presumably you are either both a fan of the iPod and a fan of the Escalade, or you are shopping for a 5-year-old who owns an iPod and is impressed by toy cars. Either way, you will be disappointed by the iCar.


When I showed my kids the iCar, they both said “WOW! Cool!” (they are 3 and 5). After about 2 minutes of seeing the iCar in action, both requested that I turn it off, and one left the room. If you are looking for a gift to give a child and simply want the initial “Wow!” factor, then by all means give them the iCar. However, if you plan to stay in the room long enough for them to open the box and try it, I would suggest you keep looking.

The iCar by Corgi.

Price: $29.99

Pros: Has a picture of an iPod on the box, is returnable at most stores

Cons: Horrible sound quality, loud grinding gears, built-in rap song is very annoying, cheap looking design, AC adapter is extra.


15 Responses to “Review: The iCar by Corgi – Possibly the worst iPod accessory EVER”
  1. Jeff says:

    That was great! I was laughing so hard I had to stop reading the review twice!

  2. Jimmy Blake says:

    This looks truly awful. I don’t know about being the worst iPod accessory, I think it looks like one of the worst products of all time.

    Top job for keep going with the review rather than just throwing the thing in the rubbish bin.

  3. KCB says:

    That grinding noise was the car body hitting the spinning wheels! What a POS!

  4. Dan says:

    From the videos, it sort of looks like the squeaking is from the back of the front left wheelwell contacting the left front tire when it spins. That’s quality engineering, right there.

    Fortunately, anything that makes a noise like that isn’t likely to make it for long…

  5. Gavin says:

    you know, all you need to do is sandpaper the edges of the wheel wells to prevent that scraping noise. while we are at it you might as well mod the lights with some altezza lights, add a 20″ woofer, and get it a custom paint job.

  6. asshat says:

    Way to use quicktime man. I would have liked to have watched these videos, but now it is just not worth the trouble. Macs are lame.

  7. Daf says:


  8. Sorry asshat,

    But we ARE a Mac site, and we actually LIKE QuickTime, believe it or not.

    -The Doc

  9. Hurricane says:

    I am not within 10 mjiles of a MAc and I could watch the videos fine in Firefox 2.0

    BTW the body is mounted too far forward, a sure sign of NO quality control whatsoever, which means ANYTHING could be loose or mis-mounted on/in the device.

    Looks like a complete pile of crap, query up in the customer service merchandise return line if you get one of these.

  10. Lisa Marie says:

    this would be an awesome gag gift if it weren’t 30 bucks.

  11. Mr. Spaguetti Sauce says:


    if they strapped this baby with free coupons for KFC, it’d sell like hot potatoes

  12. annonymous says:

    Id mod the hell out of this thing first of all id remove the car and then change out the speaker drivers and then put a holder for the ipod, maybe a dock

  13. annonymous says:

    Dr macensten i LOVE my quicktime player i have the pro version and it can convert .mov files like the 3 on this site so that they can be played on the video ipod, BTW if you’re wondering, i havent converted the 3 videos on the site i was only using that as an example

  14. that is the gayest iPod accessory i have ever seen!

  15. Eric Smooth says:

    Visit for the best accessory on the net


Click here to inquire about making a fortune by advertising your game, gadget, or site on Macenstein.