The Best Car Phone Mounts of 2024

You need to put down your phone when you drive. There’s a reason why it’s illegal in 19 U.S. states to hold an electronic device while driving. The best car phone mounts help drivers everywhere follow the laws and stay safe, whether they want to follow a map, hold a hands-free conversation, listen to a podcast, or rock out to music.

Our experts have been writing about cellular phones, auto accessories, and safe driving for over two decades. Over the years, we’ve tried dozens of phone holders mounted to various locations inside countless cars. We’ve seen what happens to window-mounted suction cups in the heat of summer (and the dead of winter). And on multiple occasions, we’ve had to pull over to the side of the road to retrieve a phone that we thought was secure from wherever it tumbled onto the floor.

After vetting dozens from spec sheets and online reviews, we chose 11 phone mounts. These ranged in price from $14 to $100. A few were left out of this final guide for various reasons. Some were too difficult to use, failed to charge phones, or wouldn’t be released to the public for a while. The rest were evaluated in a variety of real-world road conditions to see how well the phone mounts held their own.

Below are the best car phone mounts based on our testing. To help you find the best car phone mount for your unique needs, we’ve included a buyer’s guide, a frequently asked questions section, and a comparison chart.

The Best Car Phone Mounts of 2024


Best Overall Car Phone Mount

  • Attachment Point
    Vent
  • Attachment Method
    Retractable hook, rubber brace on vent slats
  • Charging
    Optional
  • MagSafe Compatible
    Yes

Product Badge
The Best Car Phone Mounts of 2024


  • Minimalist design with premium materials

  • Easy to install and adjust

  • Includes USB-C charging cord and 12V car adapter

  • Routing clips minimize stray cords around dash

  • Non-charging version available for $35 less


  • Expensive

  • May require a Peak Design case or universal adapter

Best Budget Car Phone Mount

  • Attachment Point
    Headrest
  • Attachment Method
    Spring-loaded
  • Charging
    No
  • MagSafe Compatible
    No

The Best Car Phone Mounts of 2024


  • Very inexpensive

  • Super simple to install

  • Accommodates a wide variety of device sizes

  • Easy to angle and extend


  • Can be hard to find online

Best Custom Car Phone Mount

  • Attachment Point
    Dashboard
  • Attachment Method
    Clips into dashboard seams
  • Charging
    Optional
  • MagSafe Compatible
    Optional

The Best Car Phone Mounts of 2024


  • Made for specific vehicle models

  • Well-constructed

  • Doesn’t hang off the vent slats

  • Easily repositioned, removed


  • Relatively expensive

  • Base and holder are sold separately

  • Requires assembly

  • Non-charging version is portrait-only

Best Magnetic Car Phone Mount

  • Attachment Point
    Dash
  • Attachment Method
    Adhesive to dash
  • Charging
    No
  • MagSafe Compatible
    Yes

The Best Car Phone Mounts of 2024


  • Minimal footprint on dash

  • Super strong magnet

  • Easy to tilt into position

  • Part of an expandable ecosystem


  • No charging

  • Adhesive to dash, not easily repositioned

Most Versatile Car Phone Mount

  • Attachment Point
    Vent, dash
  • Attachment Method
    Rubber brace (vent), Adhesive base (dash)
  • Charging
    No
  • MagSafe Compatible
    Yes

The Best Car Phone Mounts of 2024


  • Simple installation

  • Easy one-handed operation

  • Multiple mounting options

  • Relatively inexpensive


  • No built-in charging

  • Not as sturdy as other options

Best of the Rest

  • Attachment Point
    Vent
  • Attachment Method
    Retractable hook, rubber brace on vent slats
  • Charging
    Yes
  • MagSafe Compatible
    Yes

The Best Car Phone Mounts of 2024


  • Fast 15W wireless charging

  • Snazzy design

  • Can trigger NFC shortcuts

  • Version available specifically for Tesla models


  • Feels plasticky

  • Learning curve to make NFC shortcuts work

  • Attachment Point
    Window, dash
  • Attachment Method
    Suction cup
  • Charging
    Yes
  • MagSafe Compatible
    No

The Best Car Phone Mounts of 2024


  • Automatically opens and closes

  • Fast wireless charging

  • Comes with an 18W USB charging adapter

  • Highly adjustable double-jointed design

  • LED intensity automatically adjusts to surrounding light


  • Obstructs driver’s view

  • Doesn’t work as well on textured surfaces

  • Only auto-opens and closes when powered

  • Attachment Point
    Between car seat and center console
  • Attachment Method
    Slides between
  • Charging
    Yes
  • MagSafe Compatible
    Yes

The Best Car Phone Mounts of 2024


  • Unique placement next to seat

  • Super sturdy construction

  • Automatically closing charging cradle

  • Phone screen is closer than in dash, vent and window mounts

  • Integrated compartment holds small items


  • On the pricey side

  • Some assembly required

  • Need to look down more to see phone screen

Car Phone Mount Comparison Chart

How We Tested Car Phone Mounts

During several weeks of real-world testing, we installed eight car phone mounts — usually with multiple units side-by-side. We stuck na encased Google Pixel 6 Pro and iPhone 15 loaded into one or more mounts. With those secured, we drove over curbs, speedbumps, and gravelly stretches of road (in addition to smooth pavement just around town). The aim was to mimic the conditions the average driver faces daily while bouncing the rides around a bit.

Gear Junkie - Best Car Phone Mounts - three phone mounts in and around the center console
Phone mounts positioned above the center console are easy to install and place the phone physically closer to your face; (photo/Scott Tharler)

If a phone holder failed by not staying mounted or easily dumping the phone, it didn’t make our list. We rated theones that did based on factors such as ease of installation, steadiness, adjustability, price, and special features. We’ll continue to assess additional phone mounts for future iterations of this guide.

Why You Should Trust Us

GearJunkie knows cars, and our staff knows their vehicles inside and out. Main tester Scott Tharler has been writing about car accessories for 25 of the 35 years he’s been a licensed driver.

A vent mount is a good balance between phone access and windshield visibility; (photo/Scott Tharler)

In that time, he’s logged hundreds of thousands of miles behind the wheel, crisscrossing the U.S. in the early days and, more recently, taking his three kids to their daily activities. Along the way, Tharler has used and written about a myriad of devices including third-party Bluetooth speakerphones, backup cameras, cellphone boosters, and many other gadgets that plug into audio jacks, USB, 12-volt adapters, and OBD-II ports.

Over that same span, car phones have gone from corded affairs built into automobiles to portable (but heavy AF) bag phones to the modern-day handhelds we know and love. Now that mobiles are pocketable, have screens, and can connect wired or wirelessly to bolster our navigation and audio experiences, they need to be securely affixed to the vehicle.

Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose a Car Phone Mount

Selecting a car phone mount isn’t easy — or, let’s face it, fun. It’s one of those products that, when it’s doing its job, just fades into the background. Conversely, when it fails, the results can range from offputting to truly disastrous.

To make matters worse, seemingly every electronics, office supply, and grocery store carries phone mounts not to mention the many online retailers. You might even be tempted to walk in or click through and just grab the first one you see. But finding the right car phone mount for you requires some thought and research.

This handy how-to-choose guide has all the essential information compiled to find the best solution that fits your needs. We discuss why you should and shouldn’t consider particular types of phone mounts and which features matter most. Below you’ll find everything you need to know to decide which car phone mount will work best for you.

Universal vs. Custom Mounts

Custom mounts are made for particular vehicles. For instance, a version of the Pitaka MagEZ Car Mount Pro 2 only fits the air vents of two specific Tesla models. And when ordering the ProClip USA Center Dash Mount, you indicate your vehicle’s make, model, and year, and they deliver a base that clips into a specific spot in your exact vehicle.

Gear Junkie - Best Car Phone Mounts - Nite Ize Steelie Orbiter Plus Dash Kit
The Nite Ize Steelie Orbiter Plus Dash Kit is a tiny yet sturdy magnetic mount; (photo/Scott Tharler)

You might expect that custom mounts are prohibitively expensive, but not necessarily. For instance, the ProClip we tested was $75, and the Pitaka was just $60. They were a little more than some of the universal mounts we tested but definitely worth it if you care about clean, purposeful design.

Window, Vent, and Dash Mounts

Although other mounting locations exist, these three are collectively the most popular, each with pluses and minuses.

Window mounts can’t help but be in the way. Even with a long enough extension arm, a phone mounted to the center of your windshield will significantly decrease your field of view. If you mount it a little out of the way on the left side, you’ll still need to wonder when it’ll simply peel off on a hot day.

Even if they stay stuck to your windshield with suction and/or stickiness, window mounts aren’t always very stable. They also put your phone in an exposed area where it can get so hot that it shuts down. So, needless to say, we’re not fans of window mounts as a rule.

Vent mounts are a mixed bag. As mentioned above, they tend to put your phone at a reasonable height. But the problem is how they attach. For instance, the alligator clamp style seems like a good idea. But the problem is the awkward dexterity; it can require pinching to open and/or tighten them. Either way, the phone’s weight in such a holder could close the vent, directly affecting your air circulation.

On vent-mounted holders such as Scosche’s MagicMount Pro 2 4-in-1 Vent/Dash, it makes a big difference which way you install the rubber prongs; (photo/Scott Tharler)

The Scosche MagicMount Pro 2 4-in-1 Vent/Dashs rubber prong style, which we tested, was fine. But we prefer the ones that also employ a retractable hook arm for extra stability, such as the Peak Design and Pitaka models featured. Just be careful not to overtighten the arm, lest the first big bump you go over pop the air vent slat right off.

Dash mounts, unfortunately, suffer from some of the same quibbles as window mounts in terms of visual obstruction and susceptibility to heat. On top of that, they’re even less reliable on a textured dashboard. But their saving grace, as with the Nite Ize, is that these mounts can be positioned on a smooth surface further from the windshield and even on a vertical/angled part of your dashboard.

Size

The small stature of the Peak Design and the Nite Ize was a big factor in our highlighting those mounts, but only in combination with how rock-solid they function. In other words, being a small phone mount doesn’t make it good. Be sure to check out how much metal (vs. plastic) is used in its construction.

Adjustability

Phone mounts can be adjustable in a few ways. For example, the Scosche MagicMount kit includes multiple mounting options on the vent and dash. The Baseus mount can be adjusted in several directions, sliding, pushing, pulling, tilting, and swiveling it into just the right position. And the Nite Ize can be pivoted around that steel ball in tiny increments. But even the fixed, stiff ProClip could be slid left or right within the dashboard seams. Most car phone mounts are adjustable in some way, but some more than others.

Gear Junkie - Best Car Phone Mounts - Baseus JoyRide Pro Car Backseat Mount
The Baseus JoyRide Pro Car Backseat Mount can hold phones and tablets in a variety of positions behind a headrest; (photo/Scott Tharler)

Portability

Although a phone mount’s portability does have something to do with its size, it has more to do with how easy or painful it is to remove and reinstall. So if you get a phone mount that’s easy to uninstall, toss in a bag without it breaking or taking up too much space, and reinstall, that’s certainly a bonus. It’s also another reason not to want to deal with the messy, sticky pads and suction cups found on dash and window mounts, even though they can sometimes be washed and reused.

Charging

Juicing up your device on the go seems like a no-brainer. But if you want a charging mount, there are a few things to consider.

Wired charging can happen in one of several ways. The mount can simply position your phone in a way that exposes your phone’s charging port, to which you can attach a cord and adapter you supply. Some phone mounts — such as the wired charging version of the ProClip — include those accessories and position the charging cord in a way that when you slide the phone into the mount, it goes right onto the cord and is ready to charge. We didn’t test any systems like this, so we can’t speak to how much finagling they’d take.

Wireless charging mounts are great for how easy they are to attach your phone and rotate it to whatever orientation you want. But you need to be careful about a couple of things. First, MagSafe doesn’t always mean it’s a charger, as with the Scosche MagicMount. Second, phones and cases vary greatly in their magnetic sticking power.

Gear Junkie - Best Car Phone Mounts - Tackform Car Seat Phone Holder
Uniquely, the base of Tackform’s Car Seat Phone Holder is inserted between the front seat and center console; (photo/Scott Tharler)

This means that although MagSafe is a convenient attachment method, your phone/case combo may not stick as strongly as others. For this reason, we appreciated being able to test the Peak Design in conjunction with one of their special, super magnetic phone cases. Similarly, if you rock an Android or older iPhone, to do wireless charging you’ll need a MagSafe adapter, ideally included with the phone mount.

Another key thing to look for with wireless charging is whether it’s the older, slower version (7.5 watts) or the newer, faster version (15 watts). On product pages and websites, look for “Qi2” as a feature. And just like with the wired versions, it’s obviously nicer when the mount comes with a 12-volt adapter and charging cord. Bonus points if the adapter offers more volts, the cord is USB-C and the kit includes stick-on cable guides to keep your dashboard as uncluttered as possible.

Design

The minimalist looks of the Peak Design and Nite Ize might speak to you. Or perhaps the carbon fiber-y look of the Pitaka matches your design sense. But beyond the aesthetics, how well-built the mount is matters. We’d go to battle any day with either the ProClip or the Tackform. They look and feel so well conceived with high-quality parts that are as heavy, durable, and reliable as the vehicles we drive.

Price

To some degree, there’s a correlation between price and build quality. The three highest-priced models we tested — Peak Design Car Vent Mount ($100), Tackform Car Seat Phone Holder ($80), and ProClip USA Center Dash Mount ($75) — are each superbly designed and constructed. But the opposite isn’t true of the least expensive models. The Baseus JoyRide Pro Car Backseat Mount ($14) has worked well and hasn’t given us any problems throughout weeks of testing. So you can use the $62 average of our eight tested mounts as a general guideline about how much you may want to spend on a great car phone mount. But price doesn’t necessarily dictate how well a phone mount will work for you, as effectively as the other factors listed above.

FAQ

As discussed above, it depends on several factors, such as what kind of phone you have, whether you want to charge it in the holder, and how visible you need it to be. But the ultimate goal is to avoid — or at least minimize — distracting the driver. So, the most important thing is that the phone sits securely within the holder, which is, in turn, securely mounted within the car. Each of our selections listed above accomplishes that.

That’s a bit of a conundrum. The more visible the phone is (such as hanging off the rear-view mirror), the more it’s blocking the driver’s view. The less visible it is (such as in a cupholder mount), the more the driver has to focus away from the road.

So where it’s safest to mount a phone in the car is a balance between not blocking the view of the road, yet still being somewhere near the driver’s eyeline. That’s why phone holders mounted to the dashboard and air vent are so common. They allow the driver to see their phone screen by glancing their eyes, as opposed to turning their head.

But regardless of where a phone is mounted, the ideal is to give as little attention as possible to your phone while driving, in favor of concentrating on the road conditions and where you’re going.

As discussed above, a car phone holder could be hazardous by obstructing the driver’s view — or even just by being a tempting visual distraction. Or to a lesser extent, it could make you uncomfortable by blocking the air vent and affecting the cabin’s climate. Lastly, a car phone holder could give you a false sense of security. If the phone falls out of the mount and becomes a projectile or the whole thing crashes down, it’s more distracting than if you’d just avoided the mount altogether and left your phone in your pocket the whole time.

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