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Best Car Coffee Maker

last updated Jul 09, 2019

Coffee: it is the nectar of the gods, and sometimes can be the perfect solution for a short, pleasant road trip. Sometimes you just need a hot cup to recharge your batteries, and the nearest rest stop could be hours and hours away. You always leave a gas can in your trunk in case your car runs out of gas, so it only makes sense that you have the right tools on hand in case the driver runs out of energy. A handy car coffee maker is a great way to ensure that you have all of the tools on hand to push through those last endless miles to your destination, and many of them are compact enough that you can toss it into your backpack once you make it there. In this guide, you will find some of our favorite picks for car coffee makers.

This is the best product on our list that is currently in stock:

icon
Abode Source
88.8/100 our score
Ease of Use
91
Portability
90
Power Source
86
Size
89
Value
88
Abode Source
Why is it better?

Easy to use with simple to follow instructions

Doesn’t require the use of pods

Affordable

In a Hurry? Editors choice:
Abode Source
Test Winner: Abode Source
Amazon Link
Researched Sources
2
Researched Sources
Reviews Considered
23
Reviews Considered
Hours Researching
4
Hours Researching
Products Evaluated
10
Products Evaluated
Sorting Options
Ease of Use Portability Power Source Size Value By Default
Rank
PictureProduct
Name
Rating
Shops
#1
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.4
Ease of Use
97 %
Portability
95 %
Power Source
90 %
Size
92 %
Value
88 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$109.99
#2
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88.8
Ease of Use
91 %
Portability
90 %
Power Source
86 %
Size
89 %
Value
88 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$79.90
#3
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88
Ease of Use
90 %
Portability
86 %
Power Source
88 %
Size
89 %
Value
87 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$29.88
#4
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
87.2
Ease of Use
87 %
Portability
88 %
Power Source
85 %
Size
90 %
Value
86 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$29.99
#5
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
84
Ease of Use
85 %
Portability
88 %
Power Source
84 %
Size
82 %
Value
81 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$34.90
#6
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
82
Ease of Use
89 %
Portability
79 %
Power Source
80 %
Size
76 %
Value
86 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$39.99
#7
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
78.8
Ease of Use
83 %
Portability
79 %
Power Source
80 %
Size
77 %
Value
75 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$59.99
#8
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
77
Ease of Use
80 %
Portability
72 %
Power Source
81 %
Size
73 %
Value
79 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$38.07
#9
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
74.8
Ease of Use
73 %
Portability
70 %
Power Source
79 %
Size
74 %
Value
78 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$19.99
#10
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
73.6
Ease of Use
72 %
Portability
76 %
Power Source
74 %
Size
78 %
Value
68 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$69.99

Top 10 Picks

1. CISNO

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.4
CISNO
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
97
Portability
95
Power Source
90
Size
92
Value
88
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$109.99
Pros:

Users found that it makes a deciduous and hot cup

Cup it built into the base

Sleek and portable

Cons:

Very expensive

Users can only use Nespresso capsules

What we liked most about this design from CISNO is that it is sleek and thin so that you can store it in a cup holder, and it is incredibly easy to use- all you need to do is press a button. Plus, the powerful design can make a piping cup that is just as hot as what you would make at home.

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Ease of use

As we mentioned earlier, this is as easy as pressing a button. The cylinder design as a large light up power button in the front. When you are ready for a strong, piping cup of energy, simply load up the top with a Nespresso cup (similar to a K-cup), and press the power button to start the brewing process.

Portability

One great thing about this design is that it isn’t encumbered by any long wires, and it has an incredibly compact design that can be tossed into a tote bag or just leave it to live in one of your cup holders full time.

Power source

Users are going to have the option of charging the battery either at home using a standard AC adapter, or they can also charge it up using the cigarette lighter in their vehicle. The great thing about this option is that it doesn’t need to be plugged in full time. Once it is charged, you can tuck that charging cable back into your bag.

Size

One thing that users really like about this design is that it is slender and sleek. It is about the size of a standard thermos, but it is much thinner. It measures in at about 10 inches tall and just over 3 inches wide.

Value

The downside about this option is that it comes in at one of the highest price points of many of the other designs out there on the market, and it requires that users replace their Nespresso capsules when they run out, which adds additional cost.

Overall

If you want to make a piping hot cup of espresso while you are on the road that is going to be just as good and just as hot as what you would make at home- this is going to be your absolute best bet. Just keep in mind that it carries a pretty heavy price tag.

2. Abode Source

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88.8
Abode Source
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
91
Portability
90
Power Source
86
Size
89
Value
88
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$79.90
Pros:

Easy to use with simple to follow instructions

Doesn’t require the use of pods

Affordable

Cons:

Does not heat the water

This option from Abode Source really shines in its ability to make a potent cup while on the go. It doesn’t require the use of a power source- it uses pistons to brew your beans or grounds, and it is incredibly sleek and lightweight. It is important to note, however, that you will have to use your own hot water since it doesn’t use a power source for heating.

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Ease of use

One thing that we noted about this option is that users found the instructions included with their purchase were incredibly easy to read and follow. You will simply need to load up your beans or grounds into the chamber (using a measuring scoop that is included), and press down the pump a few times to get it to brew. Once finished, remove the cup and squeeze your desired amount into the cup.

Portability

Due to the fact that this doesn’t require a power source or batteries that need to be charged- you can take this unit just about anywhere. Plus, it is much smaller and more compact than many of the other options out there.

Power source

As we mentioned earlier, this option doesn’t have a power source. While it is able to brew your beans with the help of pistons that are activated by pumping it, it isn’t going to be able to heat your water.

Size

This unit is very small and compact, and measures to be just over 7 inches tall and 3 inches wide- making it perfect for tossing into your bag or keeping in a cup holder.

Value

The cost of this design runs pretty par for the course. While it isn’t the most expensive design out there that we have seen, it isn’t the least expensive as well.

Overall

For those that are in the market for something that is incredibly easy to use, as well as small and compact, this is going to be one of your better options. Just keep in mind that to use it, you are going to have to supply your own hot water.

3. Asobu

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88
Asobu
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
90
Portability
86
Power Source
88
Size
89
Value
87
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$29.88
Pros:

Easy to use

Copper carafe keeps your brew cold

Cold brew is a lot stronger than drip

Cons:

Takes between 12-24 hours to brew

Wider design will not fit in most cup holders

Road trips are typically something that you take in the summertime, so you might want to ditch those hot drinks and replace them with something cold- such as a cold brew that is brought to you by this design from Asobu.

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Ease of use

Loading up your water and ground into this unit takes about 4 minutes. Simply pour a little bit of grounds into the mesh filter, and then a little bit of water. Repeat this process until the top of the unit is completely full. It takes between 12-24 hours for it to completely brew, so it may be something that you might want to get started as you load up your vehicle the night before your big trip.

Portability

Due to the fact that this unit does not require the use of batteries or wires to power it, you can take it pretty much anywhere. And the copper carafe is going to be perfect to keep your brew nice and cold when the time comes that you need a little pick me up.

Power source

The great thing about this design is that it is powered by time instead of batteries. While this may not be ideal if you are looking for something that works immediately, if you sure to prepare beforehand and have it ready and brewed, this is going to be an excellent option for those hot summer road trips.

Size

This unit is just a little bit bigger and awkward than many of the more slender designs, but that’s only because it is going to be able to hold more servings in the copper carafe. It measures to be about 6 inches wide (which won’t fit in most cup holders), and stands up to be about 12 inches tall.

Value

The cost of this design is just slightly more expensive than some of the other options that run in the middle of the road in terms of price, but we feel that the versatility and clever design of this option make it well worth the slightly higher price point.

Overall

While you are going to have to wait quite a while for this design to brew, we feel that it is going to be well worth the wait for something that is going to be fresh and crisp to give you a little bit of pep on those hot and long summer road trips.

4. Coffee Gator

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
87.2
Coffee Gator
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
87
Portability
88
Power Source
85
Size
90
Value
86
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$29.99
Pros:

Affordable

Easy to use

High quality stainless steel keeps drink piping hot for hours

Cons:

Does not heat the water

This is another option that is going to give you a potent pour over in a sleek and compact design. It is thin enough that it will fit into most cup holders in your vehicle, and it is also small enough to toss into a bag or a suitcase. We also really like that it comes in at a really affordable price point.

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Ease of use

The downside to this design is that users are going to need to procure their own hot water. Once you have the hot water, using this unit is fast and easy, Simply load up your favorite ground into the reusable mesh filter, and then pour your desired amount of hot water over the top. The high-quality military grade stainless steel is going to keep your brew hot for a very long time.

Portability

The thinner design of this unit is going to ensure that it is going to be able to travel with you just about anywhere. Due to its thin design, is going to be able to fit into most standard sized cup holders in your vehicle. Plus, you will be able to remove the filter and use it as a basic to go cup once you arrive at your destination.

Power source

There is going to be no need for batteries or power outlets to use this device. While it isn’t going to heat the water for you, the powerful stainless steel chamber is going to be able to keep it hotter for longer periods of time.

Size

This unit is small and compact, and it measures to be 8 inches tall and just under 5 inches wide- making it one of the smaller designs out there on the market.

Value

This is another really affordable option that comes in at a price point that is much more affordable than some of the other options that we have seen. Keep in mind that it doesn’t have a power source, so you are going to be responsible for finding your own hot water.

Overall

What we liked most about this design is that it is compact and easy to use, and it is going to keep your beverages a lot hotter in the high-quality stainless steel liner than many of the other options that we have seen.

5. Espro

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
84
Espro
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
85
Portability
88
Power Source
84
Size
82
Value
81
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$34.90
Pros:

Leak free design

Easy to use

French press for full flavor

Cons:

Does not heat the water

A little more expensive than other powerless options

French press is a great way to get the most out of your beans or ground, because it is going to extract a lot of flavor and the oils from the beans. This option from Espro allows you to to enjoy a great cup of French press while on the road, and it worth a look.

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Ease of use

If you have a French press that you love at home, this design works the exact same way. SImply pour your grounds into the base of the unit, and then fill the cup with hot water (you are going to be in charge of procuring your own hot water). Once filled to your desired level, place the press on the top and slowly press down. You can elect to drink directly from the mug, or pour it into a glass.

Portability

This design was made to take with you on the go because Espro takes a lot of care in ensuring that their device is drip free. Once you have pressed it down, it comes with a very tight fitting lid that will allow you to toss your brewed drink into your tote bag to take along with you without the worry of spills. Plus, it is thin enough to keep right in the cup holder in your vehicle.

Power source

Once again, this is a design that doesn’t require any batteries or electricity in order to use it. However, you are going to need to bring your own hot water to ensure that it brews properly.

Size

This unit measures to be only 2.8 inches wide, and stands up to be just over 8 inches tall.

Value

The cost of this design is just slightly more expensive than many of the other designs that require users to bring their own hot water along with them. However, we feel that the ease of use as well as the quality of materials used makes it well worth the added cost.

Overall

Just because you are on the road doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy a well made French press option to ensure that you are getting the most out of your beans! This option from Espro is a great way to enjoy a rich and flavorful cup while on the road.

6. Max Burton

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
82
Max Burton
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
89
Portability
79
Power Source
80
Size
76
Value
86
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$39.99
Pros:

Classic design is easy to use

Heats and brews

Comes with a mounting bracket

Reusable mesh filter

Cons:

Unsealed top can spill

Larger than most designs

Some feel that it works too slowly

Are you a coffee traditionalist that just wants an old fashioned cup of drip brew like what you would make at home? This option from Max Burton has the style of your standard home pot, but it is a little bit smaller and it is able to be plugged into the cigarette lighter in your vehicle.

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Ease of use

If you know how to use your standard run of the mill design on your countertop in your kitchen, using this option will be a breeze. Simply fill the filter with your favorite brand of grounds, and then pour your water into the top container. Plug it into the power source, and then press the power button and sit back and wait for it to brew!

Portability

This design isn’t going to have the same portability as many of the other options we have seen that are designed to fit right into your cup holder in your vehicle. This design is smaller than your kitchen model, but it is designed to fit on a center console, or even on your dashboard if you are parked for the evening.

Power source

To use this option, simply plug it into the cigarette outlet in your vehicle. It provides just enough power to heat up the water and it can brew one cup in about 5 minutes, and a full 4 cup pot in around 18 minutes.

Size

This unit is quite bigger than some of the other designs out there, so you are going to need to make some room. It measures to be about 10 inches tall, 6 inches long, and about 4 inches wide.

Value

As far as value is concerned, this design runs about in the middle of the road, and may cost slightly less than your full 8 cup design that you have sitting at home on your kitchen countertop.

Overall

If you are a traditionalist that only wants that classic drip brew that comes in a traditional model, this is going to be your best bet. Users love that it is able to heat and brew at the same time, but it is going to take up a little more room in your vehicle, and the design is prone to spilling if you hit bumpy roads.

7. Aicok

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
78.8
Aicok
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
83
Portability
79
Power Source
80
Size
77
Value
75
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$59.99
Pros:

Uses k-cups

Only takes about 3 hours to fully charge

Slender enough to fit into most cup holders

Cons:

A little expensive

Some found it doesn’t heat the water up enough

If you are more of a K cup fan over the traditional 8 cup pot at home, this design from Aicok is going to be your best option. It is able to be plugged into a power source to heat and brew water, and it users the traditional pods that you would use in your k cup machine at home.

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Ease of use

What users love about this option is that it is incredibly easy to use. Simply fill the unit with hot or cold water (the unit will heat water if it is plugged into a cigarette outlet), and press the power button on the front to begin your brewing process.

Portability

What is great about this design is that is it tall and sleek, so you will have the option of tossing it into a travel bag, or you can leave it in the cup holder in your vehicle for when you need it.

Power source

The great thing about this design is that it operates from a battery that gives you an indication of how charged it is from a light indicator on the power button. If the battery is too low, you can simply give it a quick charge with the adapter that plugs into the cigarette outlet.

Size

This is one of the more slender models that we have seen out there on the market. It measures to be just shy of 9 inches tall, and it is about 2.7 inches wide- which makes it perfect for most cup holders.

Value

The downside about this sleek option is that it comes in at a price point that is almost double the cost of many of the average priced similar designs out there on the market. However, if you cannot live without your k-cup machine, this is going to be well worth the extra cost.

Overall

We loved this option because it is sleek, stylish, and convenient. Plus, it allows users to bring all of their favorite flavors of k-cups with them on the road.

8. RoadPro

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
77
RoadPro
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
80
Portability
72
Power Source
81
Size
73
Value
79
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$38.07
Pros:

Stainless steel carafe will keep it warmer for longer periods of time

Easy to use

Cons:

Prone to spillage on bumpy roads

Some found that it took a lot longer than 15 minutes to brew 16 ounces

This design from RoadPro is another great classic option that will brew a hot piping cup just like your classic countertop version at home. We like it because it is easy to use, and it comes in at a really affordable price point.

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Ease of use

One of the best things about this design is that it is incredibly easy to use. Simply place your coffee ground into the mesh reusable filter, and then pour a max of 16 ounces of water in the reservoir and press the on button. It will only take about 15 minutes to fill the stainless steel carafe.

Portability

While this unit is made to be taken with you on the road (hence the name RoadPro), it is going to be a little more bulky and cumbersome than other designs that fit right into your cup holder. This has the look of a classic unit that would sit on your countertop at home, so it is made to fit on your dashboard or a center console.

Power source

This unit is going to be able to heat up water and brew by simply plugging it into the cigarette outlet in your vehicle. From start to finish, it should take around 15 minutes to brew about 16 ounces of water.

Size

This unit is a little bulkier than most, and measures to be about 11 inches tall, 9 inches wide, and about 6 inches deep.

Value

The cost of this unit runs pretty par for the course. While it isn’t the most expensive design out there on the market, it isn’t the least expensive. It will likely run you around the same amount that you spent on a generic design for your home.

Overall

For traditionalists that like their drip brew served in a warm carafe for when they need it, this design from RoadPro is going to be one of your better options.

9. Sisitano

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
74.8
Sisitano
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
73
Portability
70
Power Source
79
Size
74
Value
78
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$19.99
Pros:

Easy to use

Affordable

Airtight seal

Cons:

Does not heat the water

For those french press connoisseurs out there, this design from Sisitano is going to be a breath of fresh air on those really long car rides. It is able to brew your favorite grounds right into the slender cup so that you can pour it in a cup, or drink directly from the unit itself that can fit into a cup holder.

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Ease of use

The downside to this option is that you are going to need to procure your own hot water. For brewing a powerful and flavorful cup, simply pour your grounds into the base and the pure hot water over top. Wait about 4 minutes, and then use the press to squeeze out all of the flavors of the grounds into your hot water.

Portability

With a sleek and slender airtight design, this unit is made to travel just about anywhere. It is small enough to toss into a backpack or tote, and it can also live in your cup holder in your vehicle for when you will need it most.

Power source

You aren’t going to need to worry about powering it up or charging it, because it doesn’t require any power. You are just going to need to make sure that you will have the hot water on hand to brew your perfect cup.

Size

This unit measures to stand about 11 inches tall, and is also just over 3 inches wide- making it a perfect size to fit into even the tightest of cup holders.

Value

What we really liked about this design is that it comes in at a really affordable price point that is far less than other designs on our list.

Overall

If you are someone that is looking for a way to get that same great tasting fresh press brew that you make at home in your kitchen, this design from Sisitano is a great selection for your next adventure.

10. WEOOLA

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
73.6
WEOOLA
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
72
Portability
76
Power Source
74
Size
78
Value
68
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$69.99
Pros:

Easy to use

Users found that it tastes as good as making it at home

Cons:

Expensive

Some found with cold water it takes too long to brew one cup

This little unit from WEOOLA is able to do it all- it can heat water and brew a powerful cup of espresso to get you over that last little hump in your journey. Users love this option because it is small and compact, and really easy to use.

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Ease of use

To use, simply place your Nespresso pod into the top of the unit (will only work with Nespresso pods) and then pour your water into the central reservoir. Press the power button on the center of the unit, and sit back while it brews you the perfect cup.

Portability

Due to the fact that this unit is charged at the beginning of your trip before you leave the house, it can be used in a wide variety of places outside of your vehicle. You can use it in your vehicle on your way to your destination, and then take it with you to the lake as you fish for the day.

Power source

This unit runs off of a lithium battery that must be charged at home before you leave. It takes about 3-5 hours to fully charge and can heat and brew a single cup in about 8-10 minutes. The good news is that it also comes with a charger that you can use in your cigarette outlet.

Size

This design is just a little bit thicker than some of the other cup holder designs, so you might have a little trouble on those very small cup holders. It measures to stand about 12 inches tall, and it is 4.7 inches wide.

Value

The downside to this model is that it is one of the more expensive designs out there on the market, and costs about double the amount that many of the smaller, similar designs cost.

Overall

If you are looking for a way to get a piping hot shot of energy on a long car ride, this option is going to a great choice if you are willing to pay the slightly higher price point.

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Ease of Use

Traveling can be quite stressful, so we wanted to ensure that we selected designs that were easy to use.

Many of the classic designs like that from RoadPro are made to work just like your machine at home. Simply pour in your grounds and water into the reservoir, plug it into the cigarette outlet, and press the percolate button along the side. It’s going to take a little bit longer than when you are at home, but it will be worth it in the long run. We found that designs that used Nespresso pods and k-cup pods were also a lot easier to use, because it didn’t require that users measure out any grounds- which can be a little bit difficult when you are on the road. These options are typically long and slender, and have a button along the front that you can press when you are ready to make a nice, piping up cup to get you over the last hump of your road trip. Cold brew designs are going to be the easier option to use, but some users do not like them because they take anywhere from 12-24 hours to finish brewing, and the end result is going to be cold to room temperature.

Portability

Of course, you want something that is going to be able to travel easily.

If you are in your automobile and on the go, you probably want something that is going to be able to travel along with you. If you are getting out of your car and camping, the long slender designs are going to be one of your better options. These designs are typically battery powered, which means you can charge it up in your car and have enough power in them to last the duration of your camping trip. They are generally small enough to fit right into most cup holders, and offer an airtight seal so that you can toss it into your backpack and take along with you as you go hiking. The more standard styles like that from RoadPro are great for those that want to make a full carafe for a long journey, but they aren’t going to travel as well outside of your vehicle, and they are going to be a little bulky to pack into your tote bag or suitcase.

Power Source

Not all of these designs require a power source, but for those that do we wanted to make sure that it was something that was going to be accessible to everyone.

The best designs that we found were those that had a lithium battery that was going to be able to be charged up via the cigarette outlet in your vehicle. USB powered options are great because they can offer a little bit more power (which translates to quicker percolating), but not every car comes standard with these types of outlets. We wanted to make sure that we selected designs that were accessible to all cars- not just the newer models that have USB outlets. If you are going to be on the go and far from any type of power source at the end of your road trip, we suggest selecting a design that uses a lithium battery that can be charged on the drive in, and then is small enough to toss into a backpack or tote. Another option that you can take is to select a cold brew model that doesn’t require any power or hot water at all- but these are only going to work if you enjoy a nice cool cup.

Size

How much room it is going to take up is going to dictate how much precious real estate it is going to take up in your vehicle (which is a rare commodity on a road trip), and it is also going to dictate how much it is going to be able to brew.

We liked the designs that looked like a long, narrow to-go cup. These options are great because they can be stored out of the way in your cup holders when they are not in use, and they also serve as a handy to-go cup once activated. We realize that not all cup holders are created equal- some vehicles just have those impossibly small options that can barely hold a can of soda. That’s why we made sure that we selected very narrow models that were going to be perfect for even those impossibly small spaces. The standard carafe options are really easy to use, but they often take up a lot of room. The good news about these models, however, is that they can brew up an impressive 4 cups- which is enough to keep the drivers and all of the passengers from getting grumpy on those impossibly long drives.

Value

As always, we want to save you a little bit of money when we can, but without sacrificing quality.

Many of the average priced options out there on the market are very reasonably priced, and will likely set you back about the same amount of money that it took you to fill up your gas tank before hitting the road. There were few options that were priced less than that, and they typically were powerless and required that the user bring their own hot water to the table. It is also important to keep in mind that designs that require special Nespresso pods are going to also come in at an additional cost over time, because they are going to be a little more expensive than buying simple grounds. Some of these products can get rather expensive, but users feel that the quality of the end result makes it well worth the padded price tag- especially when you are out in the middle of nowhere and have the ability to make an amazingly hot cup while on the go.

Expert Interviews & Opinions

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Ease of use

If you don't want to be bothered with learning a new method or a device that looks different than your model at home, we suggest that you select one of the classic designs like that from RoadPro. These designs are going to work just like your standard drip model at home, it's just going to make a little less than the standard 8 cup options.

Portability

For those that are constantly on the go, portability is key. Look for words in the product descriptions such as 'airtight seal', because this means that even after you brew your serving, you will have the option of sealing it up so that you can toss it into your backpack to save for later.

Power Source

If you want something that it going to work for almost all vehicles, be sure that you select models that utilize the cigarette outlet. These sources of power may not be as powerful as USB ports, but they are something that is found in almost every make and model (and year!) of automobile.

Frequently Asked Questions

q: Will they work in most automobiles?

a:

If your vehicle has a standard cigarette outlet, all of these designs are made to work in almost any size automobile. What we did discover is that some designs are more suited for on the go use over others. Machines that offer a long and narrow design are going to be able to fit into your cup holder, so there isn’t going to be any need for creating any extra room for them. Plus, most of these models offer an airtight container, so even if you have just make a fresh brew, you will have the option to seal it up tight and toss it into your pack for a treat after a long hike. The designs that are made to look like your standard home model are going to be a lot easier to use, but they are going to be a little bit more cumbersome in trying to determine the best place to put them in your vehicle. Plus, they run the risk of spilling if you encounter a bumpy road.

q: Do they all warm the water?

a:

Every connoisseur knows that the key to a proper cup is piping hot water. So, just how hot can they get when you are far from a traditional electrical outlet or stove to boil water? Designs like that from CISNO can achieve temperatures of about 194 degrees- which is pretty hot! There were a few more simple and affordable designs out there that required that the user procured their own hot water, so if you know that you aren’t going to have access to a kettle or hot water, be sure that you select one that will heat the water for you. For styles such as the cold brew, hot water isn’t even going to be an issue. The only thing that we found that users had consistent issues with wasn’t how hot the water was able to get, but how long it took each device to get to the proper temperature. If you can exercise a little bit of patience, these devices are going to work quite week for you when on the go.

q: Is the brew actually any good?

a:

This is the big question- is making it on the road going to be just as good as when you make it at home? The answer to this question is yes- it’ll be just as good, as long as you are working with the same grounds, and you also need to make sure that the water is hot. The best designs that we found were either options that plugged into the cigarette lighter, or those that didn’t require hot water at all (such as the cold brew). The key to a good, strong cup is lies primarily in the beans. As long as you make sure that you have high quality beans, you can rest assured that you’ll get a good, strong cup. The only difference with these portabile options is that it is going to take a little bit longer to craft that perfect cup, because you aren’t going to have the same level of power from the cigarette outlet as you would your electrical power outlet at home.

q: Do I have to buy special coffee grounds?

a:

Depending on the brand and style, you should be able to use the same brand that you do in your maker at home. The only exceptions that we found were in some of the espresso models that require users to use a very specific Nespresso brand pod for their machine. These pods can be great when you are on the go, because they are small and compact and they don’t require any measuring (which can be a pain when you are on the go). The downside to these types of pods is that they require that you can only buy a very specific type, which can get pretty pricey over time. We also liked designs that used the standard k-cup pods, because it allows users to pick from a very wide variety of flavors, and they can even use pods that can make tea and hot chocolate.

q: What is the difference between espresso, cold brew, french press, and drip?

a:

As you might have noticed from the products that we selected on our list- they all do not treat the beans and grounds in the same way. So, what exactly is the difference? Espresso is actually a type of bean. In fact, it typically is a blend of a lot of different types of beans, and the ground beans typically offer a finder powder than your standard bean. This means that once it is brewed, it is going to give you more of a kick and bitter full flavor over your bean, but it doesn’t necessarily mean you are getting more caffeine. French press is great because it pulls a lot more of the flavor out of the beans, as well as many of the healthy oils that are beneficial to your colon. If operates exactly as it sounds- a long arm reaches down and presses the ground beans to release all of that flavor into your cup. Cold brew is something that is going to take a lot longer to make, but it is going to give you a less bitter, more caffeinated kick. The beauty of the cold brew is that it doesn’t require hot water- so you can make it just about anywhere. The downside to cold brew is that is can take anywhere between 12-24 hours to make, so it’s best to get it started the night before your trip. Drip is the most standard way to make it, because the hot water pulls the flavor and caffeine out of the beans, and it typically takes between 5-20 minutes to make your standard cup.