The best head-up displays

• The best head up displays on the market right now
• What the difference between different types of HUDs means
• What you need to know when looking for an HUD

A head-up display (HUD) is a small projector that beams important details onto your car’s windscreen, like your current speed. The logic behind a HUD is known as the eyes-on-the-road-benefit. By removing the need to look down and away from the road to check your speed, it allows drivers to focus on the road more. In short, a HUD is designed to promote safety.

Many cars now offer it as an optional extra, including smaller cars like the Mazda 2 and Mini Hatch. It is, however, an expensive optional extra, costing more than £300 for a Mini Hatch.

There is a large array of good quality aftermarket HUDs available that will do the job for far less than a manufacturer would charge. There are two types of aftermarket HUD available; OBD-II and GPS. The GPS models are universal and don’t need plugging into your car, whilst and OBD-II requires an OBD-II port for it to work.

We’ve looked at what’s available and come up with our picks of car head-up displays.

BNTTEAM HUD

BNTTEAM HUD

Price: RRP £33.99 | VIEW OFFER

Get the best of both worlds with this OBD-II and GPS HUD. Great value for money too, this HUD may not display the most information but it will be a great way to display your speed and essential engine information.

Pros: Offers all the essentials

Cons: Doesn’t display as many readings as other OBD-II models

Autopmall Head Up Display

Autopmall Head Up Display

Price: Not currently available | VIEW OFFER

This HD quality HUD is a great option for almost anyone. It works using either an OBD-II port or with GPS, it can display an array of accurate information clearly on your windscreen. Check to make sure the OBD port in your car works with this model first, however.

Pros: HD quality, OBD and GPS function

Cons: OBD only works with certain vehicles

Scosche HUD

Scosche HUD

Price: Currently unavailable | VIEW OFFER

A great option if you’re only wanting an OBD-II unit, this Scosche HUD will display your speed, revs and engine status. With a sharp LED setup, this is a quality item and would be a great addition to a modern car.

Pros: Clear LED display

Cons: Requires an OBD-II port, no good for older cars

AUTOOL car HUD

AUTOOL car HUD

Price: RRP £36 | VIEW OFFER

Not so much a HUD as an extra binnacle to sit on top of your dashboard, this display will still help you keep your eyes on the road. This HUD uses an OBD-II port to display speed as well as other pieces of information like temperature headings.

Pros: Easy to read screen, universal

Cons: Not a traditional HUD

Car Universal HUD

Car Universal HUD

Price: RRP £26.99 | VIEW OFFER

If you regularly drive very long distances then this GPS HUD might be the best option for you. While it only displays your speed, it does come with two handy alarms to keep you safe. The first is a fatigue warning so you aren’t driving tired, the second is a warning if you travel above the speed limit.

Pros: Useful features for a long journey, simple to use

Cons: Nothing more than speed is measured

Related: The best car first aid kits you need in your boot | The best roof boxes

What you need to know when looking for a HUD

How old is your car?

Any petrol car sold in Europe from 2001 is required to have an OBD-II connector by law, so any modern(ish) car will be compatible with an OBD-II HUD. On the other hand, a GPS HUD is totally universal. So long as you can power it (and it has a satellite connection), it will display your speed easily. Perfect for an older car that doesn’t have an OBD-II port.

What readouts do you want?

If you’re more interested in just your speed, then a basic GPS model will be fine for you. If you want information about the condition and status of your car (e.g. your engine temperature), then you’ll be wanting to purchase an OBD-II model that you can plug into your car to get the correct readings.

Where will you be driving?

GPS based HUDs need a satellite connection in order to work and can lag if the connection is poor. If you plan to take your car to very secluded areas or drive through long tunnels, be prepared for your HUD to stop working. Obviously, you’ll still have your speedometer to let you know how fast you’re driving, but it is still worth thinking about