PODCAST: How Jay Leno Got Into the Car Care Business

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You may not have noticed, but Jay Leno digs cars. Because he does, he has a staff of people that take car of those cars for him. One of them ended up developing a line of car care products that now bears the retired late night host’s name.

This week on the podcast, we talk to Chris Walters from Jay Leno’s Garage, a whole new line of car care products from the most recognizable car collector in the country.

We’ll be honest: When we heard about the products from Jay Leno’s Garage, we were pretty skeptical. With all the car care products in the marketplace now, why would we need another one, and could this stuff be any better? We got a chance to sample some of the products, and it turns out the answer to both questions is “Yes.”

Chris Walters helped develop the formulations for these products after he worked with one of Jay Leno’s original detailers. As more and more people started touring Leno’s facility, the requirements for keeping the cars in top shape increased, and Walters and his partner began to create unique products that kept those cars in perfect condition.

We sampled several of the products before recording the podcast, and you can hear a lot more about Chris Walters’ story by listening below:

Vehicle Wash

According to the information from Chris, the Vehicle Wash is designed to be pH neutral, and also have the maximum lubricity for floating dirt and contaminants off the paint. We’ve tried just about every car wash product commonly available, and this stuff worked more effectively — with less material — than any we can remember. With no more than an ounce, a five gallon bucket fills with rich suds that work to clean the car as effectively as possible. To make it more convenient to use, the bottle is topped with a quick-close, dishwashing liquid-style cap instead of a screw cap.

Quick Detailer

Spray detailers are all about slickness. They’re used to not only maintain shine between full waxes, but as a lubricant for clay bar treatments, and as a means of removing heavy contaminants like bird droppings when a full wash isn’t required. That’s what we tried the Leno’s Garage Quick Detailer on and it worked perfectly. Unlike every other detailer that has an odd chemical smell, Leno’s Garage’s product has a citrus scent.

Plush Microfiber Towel

We’re not screwing around: This is literally the best microfiber towel we’ve ever used. We used one for washing, and one for drying, and they were tremendous at both jobs. They’re plush and soft, and the binding is completely smooth so you won’t have to worry about scratching. You don’t expect there to be a whole lot of difference in towel technology, but at $6.99, you’re going to want a bunch of these. They come in packs. Invest in some.

Glass Cleaner/Diamond Weave Glass Towel

This was the other surprise: A glass cleaning towel that actually works. When you’re cleaning glass, streaks are the enemy. We’ve tried all kinds of things to avoid it, including the old newsprint trick, but that leaves a different kind of mess. This towel — combined with the glass cleaner — works absolutely as advertised. It’s a low-pile towel and it’s totally lint-free, and it leaves the glass perfectly streak-free.

RELATED: DIY Car Cleaning for the Absolute Beginner

You’ll learn a lot more about how Jay Leno’s Garage came to be on the podcast. You can purchase any of the products through LenosGarage.com, or they’re also available at the great detailing site AutoGeek.com.

Also on the podcast, we talk about BMW and its idea of getting rid of the humble car key in favor of your smartphone, and we review the Hyundai Ioniq.



Craig Fitzgerald

Craig Fitzgerald

Writer, editor, lousy guitar player, dad. Content Marketing and Publication Manager at BestRide.com.