We’re going to look at 5 project ideas you can make for your car. The idea is to have projects that are simple to carry out and that can improve the way you use your car on a daily basis. Today, we use a lot of electronics in our cars without even realizing it. Whether it’s GPS, turn signals, braking assistance, rain detection for windscreen wipers or darkness detection for headlights.

So you’re about to see a whole range of projects designed to bring added comfort and functionality to your car.

Back-up radar


How would you like to have reversing radars on your car?

On Arduino it’s possible with distance sensors. To do this, you need to place the distance sensors on your rear shock absorber, then run wires inside the trunk where your arduino board will be.

When one of the distance sensors detects an object at a distance of less than 30 cm, the buzzer will sound.

What’s more, you can have several tones on the buzzer, from the lowest to the highest, depending on whether the car is close to the object or not.

Difficult project!

The biggest challenge of the project is to route the wires and distance sensors under the shock absorber and to cut the shock absorber cleanly to allow the sensors to pass through.

Refrigerated glove box


How about a cooling glove box?

It’s possible, and easily made with an Arduino board and a peltier module.

What is a Peltier module?

A peltier module is a component that creates cold when given current. To find out more, take a look at our course on peltier modules.

The module has two sides, one that creates heat and one that creates cold.
The cold side will be used to cool the glove box, while the hot side will be dissipated by a fan.

An Arduino board can only supply power to low-current 5V components, which is not the case with the peltier module. So you’ll need an external 12V power supply (to power the peltier module) with a relay to control it from the Arduino board.

To do this, you can connect an external power supply from a 12V cigarette lighter, for example.

We advise you to install a switch on the Arduino board, as the peltier module uses a lot of energy.

Backup camera


Would you like to have a live view of what’s going on behind your car?

To do this, you can use a camera connected to your Arduino board, which will take photos every 10 milliseconds to give you a near real-time view of the situation at the rear of your car.

To do this, place the camera on the back of the car and connect the wires inside to the Arduino board.

On your Arduino board, you’ll need to connect an LCD screen to view the picture taken by the camera.

Simplify your project with Raspberry pi!

One way of simplifying the project is to use a Raspberry pi board. This can be used in conjunction with a real camera, providing real images in real time.

Difficult project!

The biggest challenge of the project was to cut the par choc cleanly to allow the camera wires to pass through.

Car radio with Arduino


With Arduino, you can connect a small radio transmitter to receive the radio. Then you can use a loudspeaker and a potentiometer to change the radio station.

A potentiometer is a variable resistor that lets more or less current through depending on how the knob is turned. Thanks to this current variation, you can change the radio range.

This is an interesting project to do because it uses quite different components and will teach you many things: how a loudspeaker works, how to pick up radio frequencies…

Difficult project!

The greatest difficulty of the project is to capture the radio waves with an antenna and to be able to exploit them to get the radio!

Line tracker


Would you like a car that tells you when you’re leaving the line?

Arduino makes it possible, with line-following sensors.

To do this, you need to place line-following sensors close to the bodywork, so that they can pick up the two lines on the side of the car.

Then you need to put a buzzer with the Arduino board in the car so that it can sound when your car leaves the line.

Difficult project!

  • The difficulty of this project is to make the wires pass from the outside of the car to the Arduino board inside it.
  • The second difficulty is to get the Arduino board to know the difference between when you change lanes with your blinker and when you unintentionally go over the line.

Bonus: Car video with Raspberry pi


How about having a screen on the back of your seat so kids can watch movies on it?

This is possible with a Raspberry pi card. You can put a screen with a series of films on the Raspberry so that your children can watch them on the move. You can also put the movies on the hard disk beforehand and use a Raspberry pi distribution made for watching movies, such as Kodi.

With Kodi, you can watch Netflix, Amazon Prime and movies on your hard drive. It’s the perfect Linux distribution for movies and streaming!