When searching for the best car trackers, it’s best to determine the tracking features you want to make use of for your vehicle. We suggest looking at trackers that provide fast real-time location updates and have extended battery life or don’t need battery power at all. Make sure that the app and software provide the daily reporting on activity and location that you need. When buying a car tracker, consider if there are any monthly subscription costs and what services it provides.

After analyzing over 50 different car tracking devices with a range of features and pricing, we’ve concluded that the Spytec GL300 is the best car tracker you can buy today. Continue reading to find out more about our top picks for the best GPS tracker for your car.

Top 10 Best Car Trackers

 #1  Spytec GL300 Car Tracker

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Award: TOP PICK

WHY WE LIKE IT: Spytec has built an incredible, reliable tracker paired with an intuitive and feature-packed app that puts it in the running as the best car tracker app. The lightweight and small device is easy to stash discreetly and take with you anywhere.

Pros
  • Alerts for entering and leaving areas
  • Receive automated custom activity reports
  • Super lightweight, slim design is portable and discreet
Cons
  • No car maintenance data

The Spytec GL300 is super lightweight at 0.32-ounces and only 1” thick, allowing you to quickly place it in or on any vehicle you want to track. With real-time location updates as frequent as every five seconds, you can easily monitor a vehicle’s route on the dynamic map in Spytec’s mobile app. Its quick speed is enabled by its incredibly fast 0.256-millisecond data processing speed. The device is also extremely reliable, with Spytec reporting 99.99-percent uptime from the unit.

Extending that reliability is the Spytec’s excellent battery life, which lasts up to 25 days depending on your usage. At any rate, the device will notify you of a low battery so you can plan for its next charge. Spytec sells a case add-on that adds additional battery life if needed. The dedicated Spytec app is easy to set up and use to track in real-time. It’s also the place where users can access in-depth data on historical location and activity, and create custom reports with the info you want. It gives you the ability to set up boundaries and zones so that you can be alerted if the vehicle leaves them. All tracking information is encrypted so you can be sure it is secure and remains private. For your phone, you can also check out the best GPS phone tracker in case your device is every stolen.

 #2  Americaloc GL300W Car Tracker

Award: HONORABLE MENTION

WHY WE LIKE IT: Americaloc makes accessing your tracking data easy, featuring a powerful dashboard with detailed access to custom zones, routes, and all event activity over the past year. This tracker offers flexible placement anywhere in a car and can be attached to its exterior with a magnet mount as well.

Pros
  • Saves one year of data
  • Custom routes ensure vehicle stays on course
  • Super lightweight, slim design is portable and discreet
Cons
  • Dashboard looks dated

It’s hard to beat the Americaloc GL300W if you want to dig-in to and customize your tracking data. As with many good trackers, Americaloc allows you to create up to 100 custom zones and sends you alerts when the device enters or exits them. This tracker takes that function a step further, allowing you to create custom routes — such as from home to school — for tracking.

Americaloc’s platform allows you to store up to a year of tracking history, which you can search through easily by date and other metrics. You’ll see the time, date, battery level, speed, and the event that was logged. Trackable events include parking, moving, geofences, exceeding speed limits, when the device is turned on or off, and many more. The GL300W gives you ultimate flexibility as it can be placed anywhere in the car, attached to the bottom of the car with a magnetic case, and even wired into it. If you’re a cyclist, you might also want to invest in the best GPS tracker for bikes.

 #3  Optimus 2.0 GPS Car Tracker

Award: BEST BATTERY MONITORING

WHY WE LIKE IT: Reliable tracking depends greatly on the battery, which is why the Optimus 2.0 GPS Tracker’s advanced battery monitoring features and long battery life make it a tracker you can count on. Its battery lasts two weeks and has a built-in sensor that automatically preserves power.

Pros
  • Displays live battery percentage
  • Automatic standby mode saves battery
  • Customize reporting settings to extend battery life
Cons
  • Not durable enough for exterior use

The Optimus 2.0 gives you the full range of features expected of a top-notch tracker while offering battery-saving features as well. The tracker can operate for two weeks on a single charge of its internal lithium polymer battery. You can view the exact battery percentage and usage rate live in the device’s dedicated mobile app and via the web dashboard on your computer. The app sends out alerts when the battery gets low and needs a recharge.

One of the coolest features is the Optimus 2.0’s built-in motion sensor, which allows the device to automatically switch to battery-saving standby mode when not in motion. It toggles back to regular performance when it senses motion again. Even when in standby mode, users can access all of the device’s tracking functions. If you’re also a motorcyclist, you’ll want to get the best GPS for motorcycles as well.

 #4  LandAirSea 54 Car Tracker

Award: BEST DURABILITY

WHY WE LIKE IT: If you’re planning to place your tracker on the exterior of a vehicle, the LandAirSea 54 will endure any roughness or bad weather that comes along. Its dust and waterproof build ensure that the device won’t fail from water and dirt seeping in.

Pros
  • Accurate tracking within feet
  • Waterproof rated for extreme weather
  • Built-in magnet allows quick, secure placement
Cons
  • Mobile app not as full-featured as web platform

The LandAirSea 54 magnetic car tracker is built to withstand the elements and rough usage. Its encasement is 100-percent waterproof and dustproof, which makes it ideal for placing under the exterior of a vehicle. Its waterproof exterior is built for climates with extreme weather. Unlike most car GPS trackers, this one has a super-strength magnet built into it, ensuring that it remains securely fixed to the vehicle even on bumpy rides.

At 4.8-ounces, this device is surprisingly light and compact considering its durability. Its circular design is also very attractive, unassuming, and modern-looking. It has four LED lights on its face to indicate when the device is on, GPS connection, a cellular connection, and charging status when charging. Users can opt to switch to “Dark Mode” remotely so that the device remains unnoticed. On LandAirSeas web platform, you can create extremely precise geofences that can be as small as a bedroom. If you’re an outdoorsy type, the best GPS tracker for hiking is another must-have technology.

 #5  Bouncie Car Tracker

Award: BEST FOR PARENTS

WHY WE LIKE IT: Bouncie GPS allows parents of new drivers to see where they’re going, make sure vehicle maintenance is up to date, and monitor driving behavior to ensure that they’re driving safely and responsibly.

Pros
  • Crash detection and alerts
  • Monitor driving behavior and progress
  • Vehicle maintenance warnings
Cons
  • Only works when plugged into OBD port

In addition to GPS and cellular-based tracking, Bouncie provides insight into a vehicle’s movements from a built-in 3-axis accelerometer as well as vehicle diagnostics. The Bouncie tracker plugs directly into a car’s OBD port, which allows it to receive diagnostic information directly from the vehicle. That allows users to be alerted when any issues may arise, such as the check engine light coming on, and do get exact speed readings directly from the car. The unit is also powered directly from the vehicle so it does not need to be charged.

With inputs from the car, GPS, and the accelerometer, Bouncie can provide unique insights into driving behaviors on specific routes. These include events like rapid acceleration and hard braking. Routes are color-coded based on the vehicle’s speed, allowing users to easily identify when and where the driver was speeding. All of this helps to see that the driver is operating the vehicle safely and, if not, shows you where they need correcting. You can also track their progress over time to see if they are improving. It’s a great gift for anyone looking for the best GPS trackers for kids.

 #6  MOTOsafety GPS Car Tracker

Award: BEST ON A BUDGET

WHY WE LIKE IT: MOTOsafety’s tracker provides location, driving behavior, and maintenance data and analysis similar to more expensive devices but at an affordable price point. The mobile apps offer impressive custom settings and reporting all included with the cost of the device.

Pros
  • No activation or installation costs
  • Location, behavior, and maintenance analysis included
  • Daily driver report cards
Cons
  • Setup is easier on website than app

MOTOsafety’s tracker is a great value considering you get access to real-time data reporting every 60 seconds as well as a myriad of other safety and activity updates. Of note, you can receive a daily driving report card that automatically analyzes driving activity and behavior. It’s extremely useful in developing better driving habits. The driving behavior monitoring pairs well with MOTOsafety’s interactive Google Map interface where you can create geofence boundaries of any shape and size, as well as highlight significant and frequented locations.

You can set custom notifications for unauthorized usage outside of designated areas or time periods and if the device is removed from the OBD port or turned off. This tracker will also keep track of vehicle maintenance and send reminders when it’s time for an oil change, tire rotation, and even license renewals. Add your own custom reminders as you see fit. For dog lovers, we also recommend checking out our best dog GPS tracker to help keep your pet safe.

 #7  Vyncs GPS Car Tracker

Award: BEST FOR MULTIPLE AUTOMOBILES

WHY WE LIKE IT: Vyncs makes tracking multiple vehicles easy with up to five from one account and even allows you to track via a person’s smartphone. It also simplifies the task of keeping track of vehicle maintenance with alerts for warning lights, battery voltage, and more.

Pros
  • Manage five devices from one account
  • Group location sharing via phone
  • Track maintenance needs for multiple cars
Cons
  • High initial cost

Tracking multiple vehicles and/or persons is easy with Vyncs GPS Tracker that allows you to monitor up to five different vehicles with one account. You can also add optional family phone location sharing to be able to continue tracking people when they leave the vehicle or for tracking people in vehicles without a device installed. The Vyncs app allows you to activate group sharing so that your family, for instance, can keep up-to-date on one another’s location.

Another unique feature of this tracker is that you can still receive hourly updates even when the vehicle is turned off. Most OBD trackers only send updates when the car is running because it draws its power from the vehicle. The Vyncs tracker is great for keeping track of the maintenance for more than one vehicle. You can even determine which of your vehicles is the most fuel-efficient with fuel economy data and fuel level alerts. It’s one of the best car accessories to have for managing multiple vehicles.

 #8  PrimeTracking Personal GPS Car Tracker

Award: BEST VERSATILITY

WHY WE LIKE IT: If you want to be able to track more than just your vehicle, the PrimeTracking Personal GPS is extremely versatile and portable so you can quickly and easily use it to track people and things as well.

Pros
  • Pings location every 10 seconds
  • Use to track cars, people, and valuables
  • Unlimited distance range
Cons
  • Tracks distance in kilometers

The PrimeTracking Personal GPS is an excellent car tracking device that is lightweight and portable enough to be used for other tracking needs too. At only 3” long, you can discreetly place this tracker in vehicles, bags, pockets, and valuables. Its two-week battery life allows users to move it around without worrying about recharging the lithium-ion battery often.

The GPS works anywhere in North America and can be monitored from any range of distance and any speed. Activity and location data can be updated as frequently as every 10 seconds. Features like speed control let you monitor your car’s speed and are alerted of speeding. At the same time, the precision of the device allows it to be effective in tracking a person at walking speed in real-time. If you’re a cat owner, you might also want to check out our best cat GPS tracker buying guide in the event your cat ever goes wandering and you need to find it.

 #9  Linxup GPS Car Tracker

Award: BEST FOR FLEET MANAGEMENT

WHY WE LIKE IT: Make business easier with Linxup’s streamlined fleet tracking and monitoring platform that will help you identify bad driving behaviors and keep track of mileage, maintenance, time, and more for multiple vehicles.

Pros
  • In-depth analysis of driver activity
  • Progress charts on performance over time
  • Track scheduled maintenance of all vehicles
Cons
  • Slow to alert if device is removed

Linxup’s fantastic fleet management dashboard allows you to track a fleet of vehicles effectively at multiple levels. Get an overview of your entire fleet’s mileage, safety, usage hours, and more. View each vehicle’s individual data from there and dive deeper into a vehicle’s profile and metrics as needed. All of this functionality provides valuable insight that allows users to improve efficiency and communication.

Linxup also provides driver ratings and analysis of individual drivers’ behaviors and driving practices. The platform will rank the performance of drivers so that you can identify problem areas or safety issues. You also have the ability to add a streamlined dispatch feature that allows users to respond to jobs quickly and efficiently.

 #10  Brickhouse Security GPS Car Tracker

Award: BEST FOR SAFETY

WHY WE LIKE IT: This tracker gives you fantastic control over your vehicle and driver’s safety, with detailed insights into driving behavior, activity, and vehicle maintenance alerts. You’ll have peace-of-mind that you can track your vehicle in the event of theft.

Pros
  • Daily reports on driving behavior
  • Establish custom safe zones for the car
  • Real-time tracking every five seconds
Cons
  • Website works better than the app

The Brickhouse Security Tracker’s location tracking, driving behavior, vehicle info, and security features are designed with safety as the priority. You can help make sure new drivers are operating the vehicle safely with access to daily reports on speeding, dangerous acceleration, abrupt braking, and more. Set custom safe zones if you want the vehicle to stay inside a certain area. Since the tracker plugs into the car’s OBD port, you’ll be able to stay ahead of maintenance concerns to make sure that your vehicle is safe to drive at all times. It also provides peace-of-mind that the tracker doesn’t need batteries or charging.

This tracker is also fantastic for preventative security. Receive alerts when the car is being used, so you’ll immediately be aware of unauthorized use. The device is a great insurance measure to protect your vehicle from theft. You’ll be able to receive location updates as frequently as every five seconds in the case that you need to track down your car. If you’re looking to keep tabs on the whole family, the Life 360 GPS tracker is an additional option.

How We Decided

At its most basic, vehicle GPS trackers allow users to know the location of the vehicle it’s placed in. From there, a car GPS tracker can have a wide range of additional features related to car maintenance, roadside assistance, speed monitoring, and more. In our search, we only considered vehicle tracking devices with fast real-time GPS tracking that can provide location updates every 15 seconds or less. All models selected used a dedicated mobile app that enabled users to access location tracking data and other features.

Before we considered those other features, we examined the power source of the devices we looked at. Car trackers operate on a rechargeable battery or plugs into the car’s computer and sources their power from there. Devices that were battery-powered needed to last at least a week before needing a recharge.

In addition to being able to view real-time data, we made sure that you could also go back and look at historical tracking data. Nearly all real-time GPS trackers have unlimited range, though we had to consider the reliability of the network that it used to access those satellites. Additionally, we looked at devices that provided great accuracy, which means being able to pinpoint the vehicle within around 15 meters.

Best Car Trackers Buyer’s Guide

The Most Important Features to Consider

  1. Battery Powered Versus OBD
    There are two main types of GPS devices for car tracking. One is a battery-powered device that can be placed anywhere in the vehicle and even on its exterior. The other type plugs into the vehicle’s OBD port. Each has its own benefits and tradeoffs. Devices with rechargeable battery power can be placed anywhere and used for other tracking applications, which offers great versatility. Of course, you will need to monitor the battery life of these trackers and recharge them when needed. OBD trackers draw their power from the vehicle, so they never need to be charged. However, the downside is they are only on when the vehicle is on. OBD trackers have the benefit of accessing a car’s diagnostics to give users maintenance information.
  2. Subscriptions and Fees
    Most trackers require a monthly subscription to operate. This monthly fee is for a data plan to access GPS satellites and, in cases where the device has a sim card, a cellular network. In finding the best GPS tracker for you, you’ll need to consider the cost of a device’s subscription and the services offered. Oftentimes a company will offer several different plans that provide a varied level of real-time tracking. Less expensive plans will provide location updates less frequently, for example.
  3. Driving Behavior Data
    In addition to universal real-time tracking features, a GPS tracking device can provide a detailed analysis of other driving behaviors and activities. Some of these include information on speeding, rapid acceleration, abrupt braking, and even unsafe turning. Consider the data you want so you can make sure that the device you buy provides the analysis you need.

Best Car Trackers Buyer's Guide

Can you track someone's car?

Car GPS trackers make it easy to track someone’s car. Most trackers are 3” or less in size and can be placed discreetly in or on a vehicle, such as in the glove compartment or under the seat. Magnetic car trackers can be affixed to the bottom of a car without needing any installation or access to the interior of the vehicle, in case you’re in need of a hidden GPS tracker. You can receive real-time location updates as well as other insights on the car’s activity directly from the GPS tracking device.

Should I fit a tracker to my car?

There are many benefits to placing a vehicle tracker in or on your vehicle. For one, it provides security in the case of theft. You can track your vehicle down easily so you can retrieve it. Additionally, trackers can benefit families who want to keep tabs on their children and make sure they are driving safely and not going to unauthorized locations at unauthorized times.

How much does it cost for a tracker?

Trackers for cars are available at a wide range of price points. There are many affordable devices for cars that offer a wide range of location and activity monitoring features. In addition to the cost of the device, some trackers charge an activation fee and most require a monthly subscription to access the GPS network. All of these potential costs should be considered for the long term cost of the unit.

How long does it take to fit a car tracker?

Most car trackers require no mechanical installation and can be ready to use in minutes. In most cases, all you need to do is set up a tracking account in a mobile app or on the web dashboard. Once this is done, you will be able to start using the tracker. Battery-powered trackers can be placed anywhere and require no installation. OBD trackers simply need to be plugged into your car’s OBD port, which is located beneath the dashboard.

Noah Staum

Noah has a special ability to discover stellar new products (read: spends hours online shopping), especially if they help people create, watch, listen to music, and improve quality of life. Based in Los Angeles, he’s worked with several global social apps and is the creator of nonormal.life and White Spot Studios.

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