I’ve customized every car I had during the last 25 years, from JDM cars to my favorite old BMWs and my wife’s Tesla.
Starting with easy, cheap car mods in my early days, I’m in my 40s and have quite a few trophies on the shelf today. So yes, I know the thrill of personalizing a vehicle inside and out.
If you want to learn how to modify a street car’s exterior or how to boost your car’s performance, check out this article.
In this listicle, you’ll see the best interior car mods and how much each one will cost you on average.
If that’s your first ride, you’re probably wondering where to start with your interior customization. Don’t worry. I’ll guide you through all the options and help you make better decisions.
By the end, you’ll know how to set a budget for car interior upgrades and spend it wisely.
What Are the Best Interior Car Mods?
The best interior car mods are those that:
Showcase your own personality.
Make you smile when you sit behind the wheel.
Make the long drives comfortable and enjoyable.
Depending on your taste and goals, you can completely change the look of your car’s interior by picking the right colors and some simple mods like:
Steering wheel reupholstery, racing pedals, aftermarket shift knobs, interior trim wraps, and ambient led lighting kits, to name a few. I’d also recommend adding window tints to protect your cool car interior mods from the sun.
Most folks think that blowing money on premium car modifications will get them a beautiful custom interior, but that’s not always the case. You need to understand how to do it effectively.
I’ve seen people spending five figures on their car’s interior with breathtaking results, and some that have completely ruined their vehicles. Here are a couple of photos that illustrate both scenarios.
Don’t get me wrong; the budget is a major factor. Custom jobs and premium interior car mods are costly.
What I'm trying to say is that it's not all about the money.
You can do a fantastic job if you have basic car customization knowledge, know how to research properly and visualize what you want to achieve.
Now, let’s get into the list of best interior car mods, starting with the more simple and affordable options.
This post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something through these links, it won’t cost you a penny more. It will help DMotus keep the lights on, as I may get a small commission. Thanks!
Cheap Car Mods for Your Interior
As I mentioned, most people assume that vehicle customization is a hobby reserved for enthusiasts with deep pockets. In this section, I’ll show you some inexpensive car mods and easy ways to upgrade your car’s interior.
Steering Wheel Covers
A steering wheel cover is one of the cheapest interior mods. If you don’t have the time or money for reupholstering, a universal-size steering wheel cover can enhance driving comfort and add style to your vehicle’s cabin.
The most popular covers are made of nappa or suede leather and could include carbon fiber accents. The top-quality steering wheel cover options will cost you $30 on average.
Car Seat Covers
Installing new seat covers is one of the simplest and most affordable ways to give a fresh look to the interior of your car. You’ll also protect the original upholstery from wear, spills, and stains, preserving your car’s resale value over time.
Universal car seat covers are available in various materials and are very easy to install at home. A top-quality full set will cost you less than $200 on Amazon. Check out the different colors and patterns on each product page.
Car Seat Covers
Car Seat Covers
Another budget-friendly option to improve your car interior is to replace the floor mats. A good-quality product will shield the floor panels from dirt and damage while adding a touch of style.
Depending on your needs, you can choose mats made of rubber or carpet. They are removable and easy to clean, ensuring your car stays neat and fresh. A complete set designed for your vehicle model may cost you up to $200.
If you live in a dusty area, I’d recommend the all-weather options. Prices start at $30 for a universal fit with many colors to choose from.
The fact that Amazon’s best-selling floor mats are from Motor Trend is no surprise. Being a major automotive media, Motor Trend has a reputation to protect, so I feel confident in recommending their products.
Floor Mats for Truck/SUV
Floor Mats for Car/Van
Shift & E-Brake Boots
Swapping the shift and e-brake boots is a subtle but stylish car mod. If you match it with other parts of your interior, it will impact the overall appearance of your car’s cabin.
The most popular options on the market, made of real leather or suede and offered with different stitching, will cost you less than $50. There are custom solutions, too, but we’re still talking about cheap car mods.
There is a UK-based company called “The Tuning-Shop Ltd” which offers great quality products for most automotive brands. See what they have on Amazon.com.
Another cool and affordable option is this universal shift booth and carbon fiber knob combo. Buyers report that installation is easy and are happy with the looks.
Shift Boot & Knob
Shift Boot & Knob
Interior Trim Wrapping
You can update the look of your dashboard, center console, and other trim pieces by applying an interior vinyl wrap in your preferred color or pattern. It will also serve as a layer of protection against scratches.
It’s a very cost-effective DIY car mod; all you need to buy is the vinyl film, which will cost you less than $20, and a heat gun for the installation. My favorite part is vinyl wraps are not permanent, which makes it easy for me to change interior colors.
The automotive vinyl market is dominated by VViViD, with multiple colors and finishes available at a great price. Visit their Amazon store to see all the options.
Door Lock Accents
I don’t know how effective custom door lock covers are. Yet, there are some cool options for most brands like BMW. I guess spending $20 on those isn’t a biggie.
One of the cheap car mods I see trending right now are door lock knobs in different shapes and cool designs. For around $10, you can get everything from the American flag for patriots to dice for gamblers and shiny disco balls for ladies.
Door Lock Knobs
Door Lock Knobs
Door Lock Knobs
Rear-View Mirror Accessories
While hot rodders would do nothing but hang furry dice on the rear-view mirror, younger car guys and girls want to add bling, animals, or superheroes. I’m not really into those mods, but I thought some of you may want to explore the options.
The more useful upgrade is replacing your rear-view mirror with one that has a digital screen built in. The features include night vision, dual dash cam, parking assistance, etc.
The average price is $150, and that’s what the top-rated universal rearview mirror camera costs on Amazon. This unit has all one could ask for, with one drawback: you have to turn it off manually. Otherwise, it may drain your car battery.
Mid-Priced Interior Car Mods
Are you looking to take your car customization to the next level without spending a fortune on premium upgrades? If that’s the case, pay attention to this section. Here, I’ll show you the best mid-priced interior mods.
I’ll start with aftermarket car seats as this is one of the most impactful car modifications to improve the comfort and aesthetics of a vehicle’s interior. These look cool and provide better support, which is beneficial for long drives or when engaging in spirited driving.
There are cheaper products on the market, but be careful with those. There is only one brand making affordable car seats that I can recommend, as I have a couple of buddies who have them in their cars.
If you’re going to get this car seat(s), look at the dimensions and do proper research on the brackets first. That said, NRG Innovations offers good value for the money.
Custom Shift Knobs
An aftermarket shift knob will add more style to your interior and potentially improve grip and make gear changes more precise. Prices start at $15, but those knobs don’t last long, and fitment is questionable.
That’s why I have this car interior mod in the mid-priced section. The undisputed leader in the aftermarket shift knobs is the Italian brand MOMO selling its products in over 60 countries, including the U.S.
Here are the top picks on Amazon, which you can get for less than $100.
You can find a lot of cheap racing pedals online, but those will only do a little. Sure, they’ll look cool until they start peeling and might even cause an accident. Don’t ruin your car and jeopardize your safety with $10 pedals.
Quality racing pedals offer more grip and responsiveness, making it easier to execute precise movements. Sparco and MOMO are the most popular brands, but OMP and Razo offer the same quality at half price.
A high-end sound system is plenty of fun for some. Installing speakers, amplifiers, and a subwoofer provides a clearer, more immersive experience. Plus, you’ll turn some heads if that’s what you want.
Keep in mind that amplified car audio systems are against the law in some states.
I can’t give you an average cost for this upgrade. I’ve had great sound systems in some of my cars for around $500, but one of my buddies blew 10K on car audio.
If you decide to go wild, my advice is to visit a shop and tell them what your goals are. Consider adding sound-deadening material to the doors and cabin to improve audio performance further and reduce road noise.
If you don’t like others messing up with your ride and know how to handle wires, you can save a lot of money. Most car audio shops charge big bucks for labor.
Here are the top bargains for speakers, subwoofers, and amplifiers I found on Amazon.
Upgrading the head unit can bring many benefits, from improved functionality to better integration with apps and other devices. If you drive an older vehicle, installing a head unit will also make it look intact with modern cars.
Modern head units feature touchscreens, GPS navigation, and advanced connectivity options, making it easier for drivers to access music, make phone calls, or receive traffic updates.
You can find 6.8″ head units with all the functionalities you need in the $250-300 range, but I wouldn’t gamble with some brands I’ve never heard of. I rather pay a fair price for a top-quality unit than save a couple of hundred and pray I won’t get a defective one.
I’ve been using Pioneer car audio solutions for more than 10 years with no regrets. Therefore, that’s the brand I’ll recommend for both single and double DIN multimedia. Those are the Amazon’s choices as well.
Ambient Lighting Kits
Adding an ambient lighting kit creates a more comfortable and personalized atmosphere within the vehicle. These kits come in different colors and brightness levels, allowing you to choose the light that best suits your preferences.
Here is a quick video from Honda Accord Projects, so that you can get a better idea of how effective is this interior upgrade.
Ambient lighting can be installed in various locations, such as footwells, cup holders, and door panels, to enhance visibility and aesthetics.
There are LED lighting kits that can make your entire car feel like a spaceship on the inside—one of the best interior mods in the $50 to $100 range.
The product you see below is again one of the most popular choices on Amazon. There are tons of configurations, so make sure you read the description.
Premium Interior Mods for Your Car
In this section, we’ll look at a few interior mods that can take your ride to the next level of luxury and sophistication—the absolute best in car customization. My custom car interior listicle will give you some ideas.
That’s where you can really get creative and spend most of your budget…lol. If you haven’t been to an upholstery shop before, you’ll love it. These guys have colors, materials, and finishes you’ve never seen before.
How about Gil Losi’s Chevy Impala? The guys at AutotopiaLA did an episode with his car a while ago. You can find it on YouTube.
You can go from mild to wild depending on how much you’re willing to spend. The team will work with you and can customize every single part of your interior to spice up your car’s style.
Be sure to take your time before you dive into high-end custom jobs. Choose the combination of colors and materials carefully, ask the shop for a total price and timeline, and sign a contract.
Aftermarket Steering Wheel
Obviously, you can get that done in the upholstery shop. But if you drive a new vehicle with fresh upholstery, you can go for an aftermarket solution designed for your car and model.
Don't go cheap, and double-check if you'll retain your airbag and functionalities.
Aftermarket steering wheels are a very popular car mod among Tesla owners. A few brands offer direct replacements with outstanding combinations of perforated leather, nappa, alcantara, and carbon fiber for less than $1,000.
For those looking for a racing style steering wheel, there are plenty of options. You can get one for as little as $30, but I wouldn’t use it in a real car. On a golf cart or a racing simulator, those will work fine.
Since we’re talking about real car interior upgrades, I’ve included three top rated universal fit options that are worth your buck. Remember, you’ll also need a hub adapter to install a racing style steering wheel. Just look at Amazon’s recommendations.
Genuine Carbon Fiber
Often found in new high-performance vehicles like BMWs, carbon fiber accents became a trend. Genuine carbon fiber components are lightweight, durable, and give an unmistakable sense of sportiness.
Also, very common to see in Tesla vehicles, carbon fiber modifications include dash trim, center console, armrest, door panels, etc. Its versatility and aesthetic appeal make carbon fiber items one of the best interior car mods.
Prices are around $200 per piece on average. You’ll find many cheap imitations on Amazon, but I can tell you from personal experience that these look good only in pictures.
I suggest finding a tuning shop that sells real carbon fiber interior accessories for your specific vehicle make and model. If you drive a German car, I can recommend ECS Tuning, where I buy a lot of parts for my BMWs.
Incorporating video screens into your car’s interior can significantly improve the in-car experience for passengers. If you have kids and often get stuck in traffic or do a lot of road trips, they’ll certainly appreciate it.
Modern options include high-definition screens that can be mounted on the headrests or ceiling or integrated into the center console. A pair of decent monitors will cost you around $500.
I personally go to professionals for installing anything that requires wiring on my cars, but if you can handle it, here is Amazon’s overall pick. Make sure you read the product description and customer feedback.
Practical Car Interior Upgrades
Now that I covered the best interior mods to enhance your vehicle’s style and comfort, let’s look at some more practical upgrades. These will keep you safe and connected while driving.
A simple yet beneficial addition to your interior. It increases convenience for both you and your passengers. With a USB charger, you can charge any electronic device on the go, eliminating worries of a dead battery.
There are various types of USB chargers available, with the highest prices being between $15 and $35, depending on the phone you have. I’ve filtered the top rated products, so you can choose the one that meets your needs. See those on Amazon.
Another practical mod is adding a dashboard smartphone holder to your car’s interior. It ensures your hands will remain on the wheel and helps you navigate and access the latest traffic updates using GPS.
Phone holders come in various sizes and shapes, fitting all types of smartphones. The average price you’ll pay is $15, and up to $30 for some fancy-looking and more functional models.
Below are Amazon’s best sellers compatible with all modern-day phones.
Upgrading your car’s infotainment system with Bluetooth connectivity is another practical mod. It lets you connect your phone wirelessly to the car’s stereo, making hands-free calls and streaming music more convenient.
Not long ago, I bought a cheap unit for one of my old BMWs that still has the factory CD changer. It’s a stick-shift weekend car I use for fun on deserted country roads. Playing my favorite tunes while banging gears made a big difference.
Well spent 20 bucks. Here is the one I got from Amazon.
Lastly, getting a trunk liner can also offer benefits for your vehicle. It will protect the back of your car from dirt and add a modern look. It is ideal for SUV owners who like to keep their trunk space in pristine condition.
You can find universal solutions in the $30 range, but if I had an SUV and needed a trunk mat, I’d buy this one offered by 4Knines. Don’t just take my word for it. It has 4.8 stars based on 4,000 ratings
Interior Mods FAQ
How Can I Make My Car Interior Look Better?
There are several ways to make a car interior look better. Start by cleaning the seats and carpet. If your upholstery is worn out, consider seat covers for a fresh appearance and floor mats to enhance the overall aesthetic. You can also restore or wrap the interior trim pieces.
What Upgrades Can I Do to My Car Interior?
Car interior upgrades can be broadly divided into two categories – style and comfort. Styling upgrades are all about making your car look cool and more personalized. Comfort upgrades, on the other hand, are focused on making your car more convenient to drive.
To make your interior cool and stylish, consider the following:
LED lighting kits
To make the long trips more enjoyable, you can add:
Backrests and lumbar supports
Cup holders and organizers
Dashboard smartphone holder
How Much Does It Cost to Customize the Interior of a Car?
Customizing a car’s interior costs vary depending on the modifications you choose. Simple upgrades, such as seat covers and floor mats, will set you back a few hundred dollars. More extensive mods, like aftermarket seats and entertaining systems, can cost you thousands. That’s why it’s recommended to first research and budget for the specific upgrades you want.
What Are Some Easy and Cheap Upgrades for a Car’s Interior?
Some cheap car interior upgrades that you can easily install are:
Steering wheel covers
Aftermarket seat covers
Shift knobs and boots
Center console wraps
LED light kits
How Can I Make My Car Interior Look Luxurious?
The best way to create a luxurious feel in your car’s interior is by using high-quality materials. Leather or alcantara can be used for the seats, headliner, door panels, and center console. You can further enhance it with custom stitching and genuine carbon fiber or wood grain trim.