Last Updated on August 31, 2023 by Henry T. Hawkins
As the technology of cars improves, so do their features and amenities. One of the most luxurious and convenient features that have become more common in cars is a heated and cooled cup holder. This feature may sound like a gimmick, but there are several advantages to having a cup holder that can keep drinks at the perfect temperature.
In this article, we will explore the benefits of heated and cooled cup holders, as well as look at several cars that offer this feature.
What Are Heated and Cooled Cup Holders?
Heated and cooled cup holders are exactly what they sound like: cup holders that can be programmed to heat or cool a beverage. The heated cup holders are designed to keep drinks warm, while the cooled cup holders are designed to keep drinks cold.
This feature is especially useful if you are traveling on a long road trip or are stuck in traffic. Rather than having to stop and get a hot or cold drink, you can simply keep your favorite beverage at the perfect temperature in your car.
Benefits of Heated and Cooled Cup Holders
There are several benefits to having a car with heated and cooled cup holders.
The first is convenience. As mentioned, these cup holders allow you to keep your favorite beverages at the perfect temperature without having to stop and get a new one. This can save you time and money, as well as give you peace of mind knowing that your beverage is always at the perfect temperature.
Another benefit of heated and cooled cup holders is safety. Because these cup holders are designed to keep drinks at the perfect temperature, you don’t have to worry about spills or burns from hot or cold beverages. This is especially useful if you have children in the car, as they are more likely to spill their drinks.
Heated and cooled cup holders are a luxury feature that can make your car feel more luxurious. This feature is especially useful for those who like to entertain in their cars, as it can make the experience more enjoyable.
“Having a heated and cooled cup holder is a great way to make your car feel more luxurious and comfortable. It can also be a useful feature when traveling on long trips or stuck in traffic, as it allows you to keep your favorite beverage at the perfect temperature,” said Shayne Spurling, an automotive expert at Delta Car Care Inc.
They provide convenience, especially during long drives where you might not have access to a microwave or fridge to heat up or cool down your drink.
They enhance the comfort of your driving experience by providing you with a hot coffee on a cold morning or a cold drink on a hot day.
They add value to your car. High-tech features like these are attractive to potential buyers if you decide to sell your car in the future.
These cup holders are versatile and can hold different sizes of cups or mugs, making them suitable for various beverages.
Most heated and cooled cup holders are energy-efficient, using minimal power from your car’s battery.
By maintaining the temperature of your drink, they eliminate the need to consume drinks that are too hot or too cold quickly, reducing the risk of burns or discomfort.
Some models come with removable parts or liners, making them easy to clean and ensuring good hygiene.
Cars with Heated and Cooled Cup Holders
“Having a car with heated and cooled cup holders is a great way to make your car feel more luxurious and comfortable. It also adds a level of convenience, as you can keep your favorite beverage at the perfect temperature without having to stop and get a new one,” said Andrew Waits, an automotive expert at Scrappers Racing.
Here are some cars that come with heated and cooled cup holders:
Nissan X Trail:
Known for its spacious interior, the Nissan X Trail offers heated and cooled cup holders. This feature, along with its advanced technology and comfort-focused design, makes it an excellent choice for families who enjoy road trips.
The Cadillac Escalade is a luxury SUV that provides heated and cooled cup holders. This vehicle is known for its high-end features, and these temperature-controlled cup holders add to the luxurious feel of the car.
The Chrysler 300C is a stylish sedan that comes with heated and cooled cup holders located at the front edge of the center console. This feature, combined with the car’s elegant design and powerful performance, makes it a popular choice among car enthusiasts.
Hyundai Palisade is a midsize SUV that offers heated and cooled cup holders. This feature enhances the comfort and convenience of the car, making it perfect for long drives.
Mercedes-Benz S Class:
The Mercedes-Benz S Class is a luxury sedan that features heated and cooled cup holders. This high-tech feature, along with the car’s superior performance and opulent interior, delivers a premium driving experience.
Audi SQ5 Sportback:
The Audi SQ5 Sportback is a sporty SUV that comes with heated and cooled cup holders. This feature adds to the car’s modern and sophisticated interior, providing added comfort for both the driver and passengers.
The BMW X5 is a luxury SUV that provides heated and cooled cup holders. This feature, along with the car’s impressive performance and high-quality interior, makes it a top choice among luxury SUVs.
Tesla Model S:
The Tesla Model S, a high-performance electric vehicle, offers heated and cooled cup holders. This feature, in addition to the car’s advanced technology and eco-friendly design, contributes to the overall luxury of the vehicle.
How do heated cup holders in cars work?
Heated and cooled cup holders in cars work by using an insulated liner and one or more thermoelectric devices to actively control the temperature of liquids.
A thermoelectric device operates on the Peltier effect which states that when an electric current is passed through a circuit of two different materials, heat is absorbed from one junction and released at another. In simple terms, they get cold on one side and hot on the other. The sides can be reversed by reversing the current. This means that by simply changing the direction of the electric current, the cup holder can switch between heating and cooling modes.
When the cup holder’s heat or cool feature is switched on, this electric current will either heat or cool the material, helping maintain the temperature of your drink. Whether you want to keep your coffee hot or your soda chilled, these cup holders can accommodate.
However, it’s also important to note that the effectiveness of these heated and cooled cup holders can depend on the material of the cup. Some materials may conduct heat or retain cold better than others, affecting how well the cup holder works.
Can you install heated cup holders in your car if you don’t have any?
Yes, it is possible to install heated and cooled cup holders in your car even if it didn’t come with them originally. However, the process can be complex and may require some technical knowledge. Here’s a general overview of how this might be done:
Removing the console:
First, you’ll need to remove the console where you’ll be installing the cup holders. This typically involves unscrewing and unclipping parts of your car’s interior.
Installing the new assembly:
The new heated and cooled cup holder assembly can then be installed in place. They are usually quite large and heavy, so care should be taken during this step.
Heated and cooled cup holders require power to operate. Therefore, you’ll need to connect the cup holder assembly to your car’s electrical system. This often involves splicing wires and may require a basic understanding of your car’s electrical schematics.
Once the cup holder is installed and connected, you’ll need to reassemble the parts of the console that were removed.
Remember that this is a general guide and the actual steps may vary depending on the make and model of your car and the specific cup holder assembly being installed. It’s always best to consult a professional if you’re unsure.
Also, there are simpler options available such as portable heated and cooled cup holders that can be plugged into your car’s 12-volt outlet. These can be a good choice if you’re looking for a less permanent solution.
No. While these cup holders do use electricity from your car’s battery, the amount is typically small and shouldn’t significantly affect your vehicle’s power usage.
It depends on the model of your car. Some vehicles offer the ability to adjust the temperature, while others may simply have a standard heat or cool setting.
Typically, no. Heated and cooled cup holders usually require the car’s ignition to be on to function.
No. These cup holders are designed to be safe for use with standard drink containers, including both disposable cups and reusable mugs.
Yes, it’s generally safe. However, it’s important to remember that these cup holders are designed to maintain temperature, not to heat up or cool down drinks quickly. So, if you leave a hot drink in a cooled cup holder (or vice versa) for a long time, it could reach a temperature that’s not ideal for consumption.
Not necessarily. While this feature is becoming more common in luxury vehicles, not all models include it as standard. It’s always best to check the specific features of the vehicle before purchasing.
The cleaning process is similar to regular cup holders. You can use a damp cloth for general cleaning. For spills or sticky residue, mild soap can be used. However, avoid getting too much water in the area as it could potentially damage the electrical components. Always refer to your car’s manual for specific cleaning instructions.
Heated and cooled cup holders are a convenient and luxurious feature that can make your car feel more comfortable and luxurious. These cup holders allow you to keep your favorite beverage at the perfect temperature without having to stop and get a new one, as well as keep your car and passengers safe from spills or burns.
After researching multiple sources, it’s clear that a variety of car models come equipped with heated and cooled cup holders. These include luxury and more mainstream brands, offering this feature to enhance the driving experience.
Popular models known for this feature include the Nissan X Trail, Cadillac Escalade, Chrysler 300C, Hyundai Palisade, Mercedes-Benz S Class, Tesla Model S, Audi SQ5 Sportback, and BMW X5. These cars provide heated and cooled cup holders primarily at the front edge of the center console.
Additionally, other models such as the Dodge Charger and the Cadillac XT5 also offer this feature. This shows that heated and cooled cup holders are becoming increasingly common across various car brands and models, aiming to provide drivers and passengers with added comfort and convenience.