Jun 23, 2023
The Best Car Phone Mounts, Tested and Reviewed
We independently evaluate all recommended products and services. If you click on links we provide, we may receive compensation. Learn more. TripSavvy / Anna Knief There's no substitute for a solid car
We independently evaluate all recommended products and services. If you click on links we provide, we may receive compensation. Learn more.
TripSavvy / Anna Knief
There's no substitute for a solid car phone mount to get the best use of your smartphone while driving. It frees up your hands (an essential while driving) and places the device in a place that can be seen easily (to reference driving directions) and quickly controlled without impeding your vision or any of the vehicle's controls. We started by looking at the different types of phone mounts, including those that attach to your car's AC vent and those that mount on the dashboard and windshield or integrate with you a cup holder. And then we put 19 to the test.
Each product was evaluated on a five-point scale on the core features: its capacity and whether or not it supported phones and phone cases of different sizes, the overall design, ease of assembly, the degree of stability and security in holding the phones, how easily it was to maneuver the device once it was mounted, and the cost-to-value ratio. The top pick, the andobil Car Phone Holder Mount hit all the sweet spots, with a variety of mounting options and the ability to remove the phone with one hand, but others excel at working with all types of vent configurations or boast features that help manage your charging wire or actually fuel your device via wireless tech. Below are our picks for each category.
This mount proved to be the most versatile in both how you can mount the device and the ways you can configure the phone for optimal display, and the one-button release button makes it easy to free your smartphone.
Our tester noted that the price was a bit high.
After using the andobil Car Phone Holder Mount, our tester’s feedback bordered on the hyperbolic. And that enthusiasm is easy to understand. You can attach the device to your car in three ways: by slipping it into a vent, directly onto the windshield with the included three-layer nano-gel suction cup, or by adhering the mount to the dashboard or windshield with the included 3M sticky pad. Three touchpoints in the mount itself (at the bottom and either side) provide a solid hold on your device, and the storage section is wide enough to accommodate the largest phones and cases.
The whole thing sits on a 7.3-inch mechanical arm, which can be adjusted to suit your circumstances, while a 360-degree rotational ball allows you to angle the phone, making it easy to see and operate while driving. And our reviewer loved that it has a one-button release system, which makes it easy to grab the device with one hand. They’ve even created a gap in the adjustable lower bracket to plug your phone in to charge or play music or a podcast over the car’s stereo system.
Mounting Type: Dashboard, windshield, vent | Dimensions: 3.5 x 3 x 5.8 inches | Weight: 5.9 ounces
Reasonably priced, the Gravity Car Phone Holder Mount is intuitive, holds the phone stable on bumpy roads, and can be removed without messing with a release button.
The set-up required reading the instructions, and configuring the device in the proper vent took a little trial and error.
At first glance, our tester was skeptical that the AINOPE Gravity Car Phone Holder Mount would stabilize the device. But they were in for a pleasant surprise, as the seemingly flimsy-looking device is actually engineered to use the weight of your phone to hold it stable—simply slot the hook-shaped mount into an a/c vent, and three grasp points provide a sure grip with the vents. Then drop your phone into the foot, and the phone's weight automatically clamps your device–no fussing with buttons or micro-adjustments. This also made it easy to release the phone with one hand. The setup doesn't interfere with the air circulation and can accommodate large phones with big cases, just as well as smaller devices.
Mounting Type: Vent | Dimensions: 3.92 x 4.49 x 1.3 inches | Weight: 3.84 ounces
TripSavvy / Hildara Araya
For the price, the Arteck Car Mount delivers an easy-to-mount solution that’ll accommodate devices up to 3.54 inches wide.
The color may not please everyone, and the plastic felt a bit cheap–but it did handle our stress tests without issue.
Boasting a price well under $10, the Arteck Car Mount makes for an easy way to view and use your device while driving. It mounts directly to the dashboard or windshield with a sticky gel pad (and can be removed without leaving any residue), though our tester noted that the protective cover was a bit tricky to pull off and that you have to push the lever down to secure the device. But once in place, it held the phone stable over various speeds and terrains. The side clamps slide to accommodate devices ranging from 2.16 inches to 3.54 inches. Our tester wasn’t crazy about the red on the back but liked the sleek design.
Mounting Type: Adhesive to dashboard or windshield | Dimensions: 5.47 x 3.15 x 2.64 inches | Weight: 4 ounces
The VICSEED Car Phone Mount is easy to operate, thoroughly stable, and features high-quality materials.
This device is not compatible with really large smartphones or big cases, and only works with certain vent types.
The VICSEED Car Phone Mount tester lives in a city where thieves will break into a vehicle to steal anything, so it’s a testament that the mount is easy to attach and remove from your car’s vent. It uses a double lock air vent clip that firmly locks it into place—our tester noted that the clips took a bit of strength to open, but that only adds to the stability.
It is constructed of aircraft PTFE and reinforced metal and can withstand impacts and extreme temperatures. And once you adjust the side clamps to fit your device, you simply have to slide in your device, and it’s secure. However, our tester noted that the rotation was a bit stubborn, but it worked without issue once configured.
Mounting Type: Vent | Dimensions: 2.8 x 2.8 x 4 inches | Weight: 1.6 ounces
The iOttie Easy One Touch 5 Smartphone Car Mount feels well-made and achieves solid purchase on your windshield, along with loads of ways to configure the display to avoid glare or swap the phone from vertical to horizontal modes.
The adhesive for the mount is really sticky, which makes it a bit tricky to get the device into the perfect position.
When mounting the iOttie Easy One Touch 5 Smartphone Car Mount, our tester found that the mounting area was "incredibly sticky," which made installation difficult because it would stick whenever it touched the windshield. But once it was in place, our tester loved how well it held true, providing ample stability. And thankfully, mounting a smartphone was a breeze. It uses two locking side arms that secure the device with one hand once you place the phone on the trigger button that lies across the mount's platform. Our tester also appreciated how easily you can adjust the display configuration—the bottom foot can be lowered and raised with a spring button control, the telescoping arm can extend from five to eight inches, and it pivots 260 degrees to allow for vertical or horizontal display.
Mounting Type: Adhesive windshield | Dimensions: 6.5 x 4.2 x 4 inches | Weight: 7.2 ounces
TripSavvy / Christine Colby
If you’ve got Bluetooth tech to wirelessly stream audio to your car’s stereo system, the ZeeHoo Fast Charging Auto-Clamping Car Mount offers an easy way to wirelessly charge your phone while using the device mid-drive without having to carry your charging wires.
The on/off charging button requires that you pull the foot down, which lowers the phone a bit, and some may need to connect their phone to the USB port to integrate with the car’s stereo system, making wireless charging unnecessary. And you’ll probably never want to leave it in your vehicle.
While most phone mounts let you plug your phone into the car’s USB port while using it, the ZeeHoo Fast Charging Auto-Clamping Car Mount employs wireless charging directly in the mount itself for no-fuss charging. Just drop the device into the mount, and pull down on a tab to start charging. A 15-watt charging system fuels it, drawing its power via a cable plugged into a USB port.
The mount itself proved easy to set up and can work on the dashboard, vent, or windshield, and the device itself mounts easily—just place the device on the foot, and the side clamps close. All you need is a gentle touch on any side of the quick-release buttons to remove it. Full rotation makes it easy to see and operate your smartphone, and a knob control also lets you adjust the mount’s arm length. As with most wireless charging, it only works if you don’t have a phone case or with cases that are only 3 millimeters thick.
Mounting Type: Vent, dashboard, windshield | Dimensions: 4.49 x 2.85 x 2.24 inches | Weight: 11.3 ounces
Well-priced for such a high-quality product.
It provides a sure, strong way to mount your phone quickly.
If you use a phone case, the magnets may not be strong enough to provide a sure purchase on the device.
At first glance, our tester was worried that the Scosche MAGDM MagicMount Universal Magnetic Holder would be weighed down by their phone, but the small size of the mount merely hid its strong support for the device. Set-up took less than five minutes, with clear instructions and a tacky adhesive lining the suction cup that married nicely to the dashboard (and can also be used on the windshield). That holding power comes from the use of rare-earth neodymium magnets.
Once set in place, the mount has a four-axis, 360-degree adjustable head, along with a soft rubber lock-nut that’s easy to adjust, and you can also set up the mount to support landscape viewing, a nice win for when you’re using a GPS app. And the tester also liked how the included cable clip let them secure the charging cable to the mount. The only modest caveat reported was that, when using an iPhone 11 Pro (which uses some non-metallic materials on its back side), our tester noted that the phone is mounted in a very specific place to avoid the phone from sliding.
Mounting Type: Dashboard, windshield | Dimensions: 2.1 x 3 x 2.3 inches | Weight: 3.2 ounces
TripSavvy / Awa Dia
The Magsafe Car Vent Mount provides a streamlined, hands-free viewing and operation solution with a strong magnetic hold to keep your device secure.
Mounting the device into the vent took a bit of work.
You can’t use the device with phone cases that aren’t metal.
It only supports a handful of the latest iPhones.
The streamlined design of the Belkin MagSafe Car Vent Mount works well for minimalists looking for a svelte mount to work with their car’s a/c vent. Our tester noted that it did take a bit of work to get the clips in place and loved that the arm of the mount has a narrow cable management slot, which keeps your charging cable in place. The magnetic hold means you can position the phone in either landscape or portrait mode, allowing for one-handed operation. But if you don’t have a MagSafe case, you’ll have to remove your phone case to use it, which can be a pain.
Mounting Type: Vent | Dimensions: 4 x 3 x 6 inches | Weight: 5.6 Ounces
You get two WixGear Magnetic Mounts in one package, including a separate magnetic plate, which lets you configure the mount to work with your existing phone case.
With heavier phones, moving the phone around on the mount takes a bit to find the sweet spot to prevent the device from tilting.
Most magnetic mounts create problems for drivers who don’t have a magnetic case, but WixGear Magnetic Mount clears this annoyance by including a separate adhesive magnetic plate that you can attach to the inside of your case or on its back, which our tester loved. The vent mounting was simple, though different phone weights mean it might take a bit of adjustment to find the sweet spot where your phone balances at the desired angle—but our tester reported that the phone itself was always stable.
The pack comes with two mounts at one low price; our tester theorizes that might be because the mount might suffer some longer-term damage due to the more extreme temps that feed through the vent. Our tester also found that the vent mounting didn’t always provide quick access for receiving detailed directions, but they loved how easy it was to handle the touch screen as needed.
Mounting Type: Vent | Dimensions: 4.1 x 3.3 x 1.5 inches | Weight: 3.2 ounces
TripSavvy / Pamela Jew
In addition to the products listed here, we tested ten other phone mounts that didn’t quite make the cut. This includes the Loncast Car Phone Holder, which only allowed you to mount the phone horizontally, and the Vansky 3-in-1 Car Phone Mount, which our tester said was “impossible” to get the mount to adhere to the dashboard and windshield, and kept tilting when attached to the vent.
The iOttie iTap Magnetic Dash and Windshield Mount was straightforward to install, but the limited head rotation range didn’t make it easy to configure the optimal display or touchscreen access. Our tester really liked the Trianium Magnetic Dash Car Mount Phone Holder but worried that the adhesive wouldn’t work on textured dashboards, which, therefore, might not secure a heavier phone. We were won over by the simplicity of the YOSH Car Phone Mount Holder Magnetic Air Vent, but unless you have a metal case, you have to adhere a magnetic patch to your phone or case to make it work, which some testers simply didn’t want to do.
The Kenu Airframe Pro Car Vent Mount worked well in short trips, but often the phone would dip over longer durations and isn’t ideal for heavier phones/cases, and while the Beam Electronics Universal Smartphone Car Air Vent Mount seemed like it would be solid, the mount itself felt bulky and hard to clip to the vents, and the adjustable tab actually caused disruption during set-up. And we were disappointed that the Miracase Car Phone Vent Mount didn’t provide directions on how to attach the mount to your vent, which proved far more difficult than it should be.
Unnecessarily complex installation also proved to be the downfall of the iOttie Auto Sense Qi Wireless Charging Cup Holder Phone Mount, which also requires that you sacrifice a cup holder, and even then, it positioned the phone at an angle that proved to be too low to be useful for referencing directions, which was also a key drawback in the TopGo Cup Holder Phone Mount, a product that also got dinged because the phone felt less stable in the horizontal position.
The testing protocols for these car mounts were relatively straightforward. We assembled them and mounted them in the various ways each mount could support, including in the vents or on the dashboard or windshield, taking particular note of the ease of assembly and mounting. Then we placed various phones (with and without cases) on the mounts, first focusing on the ease and speed in which the phone could be secured and removed.
Then we tested how easily the phone could be tipped and rotated to account for instances of glare or a desire to shift the display from vertical to horizontal. Then we hit the road, using the phones for such tasks as playing music or a podcast, GPS-fed directions, and other applications for two weeks. This allowed us to validate how easily the mount could be removed, how well it stood up to variable temperatures, and how securely it held the phone. And it also helped us evaluate whether or not the mount/phone set-up introduced any awkwardness, either in seeing and using the device or if it impeded any of the car’s controls. After the testing period, we rated each device on a scale from one to five on the key characteristics: ease of use, stability, quality of materials, and value.
Naturally, for the car mount to work, it needs to accommodate the width of your phone, and most are adjustable enough to handle larger phones and bulky phone cases. But always measure your device and ensure the cradle is wide enough to accommodate it. And if you have additional features in your phone cases like a wallet, pop socket, or mounts, be sure that the car mount can handle that without compromising the phone’s stability.
Windshield-mounted devices are the universal option and work with either an adhesive layer or a strong suction cup (or sometimes both), while dashboard-mounted mounts work with most car types, though the latter may not adhere if your dashboard is textured. Vent-mounted devices are easier to attach to your vehicle but be sure that the car mount is compatible with your car's specific vent configuration and shape.
Our testers loved car mounts with no-fuss device mounting, such as those that automatically clasp the phone in place when you place your device into the mount’s foot. And easy, one-handed removal also won accolades. And if you don’t want to leave the mount in your car when you’re parked, quick removal and attachment of the mount to the car was also a nice feature. Also, be sure that the device doesn’t obstruct the charging port on your device should you want to charge your phone while in use or if you need to connect your phone to the car’s USB to use the vehicle’s audio system. Adjustability–the ability to rotate the phone 360 degrees or tilt it while it’s mounted or telescoping arms–also can make it easy to get the optimal position for unobstructed viewing and to handle the glare of the sun. And if wireless charging seems like a solid feature, look for devices that accommodate that tech.
Whether you mount your phone via the car’s vent or on the dashboard or windshield, you need to ensure three things: You can see the device, can easily control the device, and ensure that the device doesn’t obstruct your point of view out the windows and windshield or doesn’t interfere with any of the car’s controls. Most drivers place their mounts so that the phone sits to the left or right of the steering wheel (when using a vent-mounted or dashboard mount) or in the lower regions of the windshield so that your ability to drive isn’t impacted, while still keeping the phone visible and easy to reach.
You can get a solid car phone mount for less than $20, but if you want a super-stylish mount that employs magnets for quick attachment/detachment, expect to spend a bit more. Devices that provide wireless charging while the phone is in the mount run higher.
Almost all car phone mounts are designed to accommodate phones of different sizes and to work with bulky or streamlined phone cases. Those that have wider side arms or cradles will work with a wider variety of phones and other devices, so if you plan on getting a new phone frequently (and favor larger phones), go with the widest-possible mount set-up to avoid upgrading your car mount when you acquire your new smartphone. Those that attach the phone to the mount via magnets can handle phones of any size but require a magnetic case (or a phone without a case) to provide a sure purchase on your device.
Nathan Borchelt has been rating, testing, and reviewing outdoor and travel products for decades. He collated the collective feedback of all the testers, layered in additional research to evaluate each phone mount's key features and overall functionality, and consulted professional profiles and reviews from verified customers for each product.Mounting Type: | Dimensions: | Weight:Mounting Type: | Dimensions: | Weight:Mounting Type: | Dimensions: | Weight: Mounting Type: | Dimensions: | Weight: Mounting Type: | Dimensions: | Weight:Mounting Type: | Dimensions: | Weight: Mounting Type: | Dimensions: | Weight: Mounting Type: | Dimensions: | Weight: Mounting Type: | Dimensions: | Weight: