There was a time when most vehicles came with cigarette lighters as standard equipment. However, times have changed and auto manufactures, perhaps in response to decreased smoking rates, no longer provide this often neglected feature – at least as a typical stock accoutrement here in the U.S.. While the tiny glowing plugs of the past are gone, their receptacles remain behind to satiate the incessant thirst for our modern electronic devices. With this change, comes a new, more fashionable, yet just as descriptive name for these vestigial sockets – the accessory power outlet.
Although built in 1971, Moby was not provided with a cigarette lighter as it was still an option requested by the customer through the dealer and not a VW standard. The lighters in my previous VWs remained unused, with the exception of a work light I rigged for roadside emergencies. I, therefore, gave Moby’s deficiency in this department no thought upon her purchase. That is until I installed a multi-musical device accepting radio; started driving longer distances with Martha, who very much likes her electronic companions; and began camping with kids which, at times (think rainy days), are easily distracted with a movie so their parents can have a moment of rest in their soggy sneakers. To accommodate the demand for power, I tapped into the auxiliary fuse block and installed our very own accessory power outlet.