As car lovers, sometimes we overdo things to pay homage to the brands we love. Too many Porsche t-shirts, a BMW ball cap for hitting balls at the driving range, and maybe even a Corvette flag to fly on your front porch during Le Mans or Sebring.
While all automotive brands use other companies to print a logo and promote their brand, there are a number of car companies that actually make other things. Some of these things you pass by at the store and pay no attention to and others you may look at and think..."yep...that is an Aston Martin boat."
10. Aston Martin - Homes
If you have ever loved a car enough you thought you could live it, there are a few automobile manufacturers that are brining their quality to the dwellings you can live in. Aston Martin has expanded to the condominium market. They produce high-quality luxurious living spaces exactly like you would imagine. Wood and leather come together in a stylish modern look that will leave you drinking your martini on the couch feeling like a British secret agent. If a luxury condo is a little cramped for the family, and you are looking for something a little more affordable, maybe Toyota has what you are looking for. In Japan, Toyota makes environmental friendly and stylish prefabricated homes out of concrete.
9. Aston Martin - Boats
If you are living in your high rise Aston Martin condo and want to drive your DBS down to Monaco for a weekend away at some point, you're going to need a nice boat to fully enjoy the coast. Aston Martin can help you out there too. The AM37 is the company's 1040 horsepower boat. If you are not a fan of the AM37 a number of other manufacturers can also put you on the water in their product. Bugatti, Ferrari, and Mercedes, along with a number of other car manufacturers produce waterborne vehicles for you and your family to enjoy.
8. Honda - Jets
The jet-setting life is not for everyone. However, when everything works out and you are able to purchase your own jet, Honda can set you up with what you need. The twin-engine six-seat light business jet is built in Greensboro NC. Built as competition for Cesnas' Citation aircraft line, the HA-420 can haul 4-5 of your closest friends (and yourself!) as long as one of you can pilot the plane. A range of 1,388 miles will allow you to fly from Kansas City to Boston in a matter of hours on one tank of fuel. Honda's automotive slogan “The Power of Dreams” really makes sense when you consider the jet flying over your house could be made by the same company as the 1978 civic rusting in your neighbors backyard.
7. Honda - Lawn Mower
Motorcycles, cars, and jets, Honda sells just about everything you need. Even when you are not looking for transportation the company produces products to make your life easier. Since the dawn of suburbia, the lawn mower has been the pinnacle of pride among neighbors and families living in the manicured communities. Alongside John Deere and Weed Wacker, Hondas products are lined up at hardware stores around the world. Ready to be purchased and do years of hard work, the mowers knock lawns down to a height that is acceptable by neighborhood associations around the worldwide.
6. VW - Sausages
The love of German products can mean a love for a number of things. Their designing and engineering are world renowned in any mechanical device. Their beer is the standard for any brewed beverage produced. Sausage is also an area of great reputation for the Germans. Automotive giant VW pulls from two of these categories. Item no. 199 398 500 on the official Volkswagen parts list is a very unique product for an automotive company. It is a currywurst that has been served in the companies cafeterias since 1973 for breakfast and lunch. It is also sold in grocery stores under the “Volkswagen Originalteil”, (VW “original parts”) brand and the company sells more sausage per year than cars.
5. Peugeot - Pepper Mill
The family business of Peugeot was founded in 1810. Long before the first car, they manufactured coffee grinders and pepper mills, before Peugeots moved on to produce bicycles, and from that, cars. Peugeot merged with Citroen later and the food grinding family business became separate. The Peugeot family sold off many shares of the Citroen merger, but still owns a large amount, and their pepper-mill company is still going strong. If you are in the United States Peugeot does not export cars to the US, but if you feel like you cannot live without owning a genuine Peugeot product, their pepper grinders are sold at places like Target. Just look for the lion logo.
4. Toyota - Sewing Machines
In 1946 the first Toyota sewing machine was built. Under the supervision of Toyota founder Kiichiro Toyoda himself, the HA-1 was built. Toyoda believed that home-use products must be functional and beautiful at the same time. With his approval, the machine was allowed to carry the Toyota trademark. In 1962 the company opened a New York office and began exporting to the United States, and then to Europe in 1966. Like their automotive reputation, Toyota sewing machines continue to produce quality innovative machines today that are enjoyed worldwide.
3. Mitsubishi - Air Conditioner
Looking for a reliable company to keep your house cool? Do you enjoy driving around in your 2001 3000 GT and wonder where you can get the same reliability in an HVAC system? The list of air conditioning manufactures seems never-ending; Trane, Lennox, American Standard… how about Mitsubishi? Yes, the same company that makes the Mirage, Eclipse, (or that 3000 GT you're still driving) also makes air conditioners for your home or office. The automobile company’s electric division teamed with Innersole Rand in a fifty-fifty venture. They provide heating and cooling products that can be applied to the smallest homes through the largest commercial buildings.
2. GM - Bat House
People have mixed feelings about bats. From flying rodents to friendly and cute bug eaters there can be concern for bats... or for the people who bump into them! More and more research is showing just what the bat does for the environment itself and how important it is to keep bats a healthy part of the ecosystem. With those benefits in mind the bat house had grown in popularity. There is a concern for the Bat at GM where bat projects have been a part of their wildlife preservations programs for years. The company creates bat houses out of scrap Chevy Volt battery covers and also uses an adhesive created to assemble the Stingray to create artificial cave-like conditions.
1. McLaren - Bicycle
If you are familiar with McLaren, you are probably a fan of F1 or have read about the company's supercars at some point. The company also produces bicycles, (highly engineered carbon-fiber road racing bicycles), but don't head to your local bike shop to look for one. Remember - everything is relative. If you have a McLaren sitting in your garage and you can still pay your mortgage you may want to consider the McLaren Tarmac Bicycle. If you are like most of us, however, the $20,000 you will pay for the bike could probably be put toward a nicer car than you own now.