Some features of aftermarket dashboards are carbon fiber, wood or aluminum material, upgraded back lighting and expanded gauge clusters. Aftermarket dashboards often have more accurate speedometers and tachometers as well as gauges not normally found on the standard dashboard, such as an oil pressure and temperature gauge, brake pressure gauges, a transmission temperature gauge, water temperature gauge, turbocharger or supercharger boost gauge, and a battery voltage gauge.
Some aftermarket dash kits are designed for racing and performance, while others emphasize style and appearance. Some that are designed for appearance feature veneers that can be installed over the factory dashboard and instrument panel for ease of installation and removal. They are available in most colors or in carbon fiber, aluminum, chrome or polished wood of different shades.
Performance dashboards, while often aesthetically pleasant, place emphasis on presenting the driver with as much information as possible about the vehicle's running condition and diagnostics. The addition of gauges reveals to the driver which part of the drivetrain is under stress. It can be a valuable tool capable of preventing engine or transmission damage or failure, as well as catching complications such as low oil or water levels, a weak battery, turbocharger or supercharger performance, and brake performance. Digital gauges are available and popular, but many vehicle enthusiasts prefer classic analogue white-faced gauge clusters.