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Hidden vault concealing guns and money is hot-selling accessory for pickups, SUVs

Mark Tuttle of Grandville loves removing the doors and top from his 2016 Jeep Wrangler and heading into the woods of Michigan for a weekend of hammock camping. It used to be, when he stopped at a gas station to grab a Payday candy bar, he left his belongings totally exposed. “My vehicle is accessible to anybody who walks by,” he said. “Anybody that wants to can walk up and take anything. Most of the time that’s not a problem, but I’m not going to leave my wallet or phone or a handgun accessible.” So, he started looking for “something secure” and made a discovery: a hidden 12-gauge cold-rolled plate steel safe that’s bolted inside the center console between his two front seats. The secret hiding place is designed to protect money, phones, credit cards, handguns or anything of value. “I installed it myself, in the center console, undernerneath the armrest,” said Tuttle, who works for an auto parts supplier. “Several people have bought them because of mine. They all had Wranglers. Every time you’d get out of the Jeep, you’ve got to grab everything of value and stuff it in your pockets and take it with you.” Tuttle isn’t alone. In 2020, Columbus-based Console Vault expects to see its most profitable year in nearly two decades. Co-founder Scott Bonvissuto said people are more focused in recent months on personal safety and securing weapons in compliance with increasingly popular conceal carry laws. Customers in Texas, California and Florida are purchasing the most vaults — for their Ford F-150 pickups, Ram Trucks and Chevy Silverados. As other companies have caught on to the trendy vehicle accessory, an estimated 75,000 people in 2019 made their purchases from Console Vault, which invented the concept. The company, founded in 2002, also installs the hidden vaults as part of an option package for buyers of the bestselling Ford Super Duty pickup at the factory in Louisville, Kentucky.  [full article]

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