They can't make potholes, construction delays or "Detour" signs disappear. But by transforming your car into a comfortable, productive space, these accessories can turn your morning commute from hellish to happy (or at least bearable).
You may already have a heated driver's seat for those cool mornings, but does it also massage your back and provide lumbar support? If not, you can get a padded cushion that plugs in to your car's cigarette lighter or power point to warm those nether regions (www.obusforme.com).
How about a car desk that sits on the passenger seat? The Mobile Console has seatbelt slots, so it stays in place if you hit the brakes. Put a laptop or fax machine on the large, nonskid, hinged top; store files in the space underneath. The desk has grab handles so you can carry it easily to stash in the trunk (www.steelhorseautomotive.com).
Hang up more than just your jacket with a ratcheting expansion bar (www.keepercorp.com).
If the hot sun plagues clients sitting in the back seat, Infiniti offers an automatic rear sunshade on its I30 sedan (www.infiniti.com).
Sturdy holders for your center console or dash mean you'll never fumble on the floor for your dropped cell phone, handheld or notepad (www.sharperimage.com).
And for true road warriors, the RoadWriter, a docking station for Palm products, comes with an integrated keyboard (www.revolvedesign.com).
On the fly
Wish you could rise above it all instead of sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic? Moller International predicts you will-literally-in 10 years. Tests of the company's Skycars are well underway. The flying coupes and sedans may only get 15 to 20 miles per gallon, but they'll travel 350 mph after vertical takeoff. You won't even need a pilot's license. On-board computers do all the flying for you. Cost? About the same as a top-end luxury car (www.moller.com).
Editor and consultant Jill Amadio has reported on the automotive industry for 23 years.