Dangerous times call for new considerations – Console Vault has an easy solution for on-the-road security
by Rob Reaser, photography by Therese Shaw
Most of us consider our vehicles to be safe havens in the same manner as we consider our homes to be a secure refuge. As events unfolding around the country cautiously and continually remind us, safety is never guaranteed no matter where you are. Unfortunately, this is the state of our times. Preparing and planning to extricate yourself from some dystopian nightmare is no longer a theoretical exercise in personal defense and property security…it is the reality forced upon us all.
The desire for a defensive firearm to be close at hand no longer centers around on-body carry as practiced by CCW/EDC firearm owners. It has now become a consideration for all law-abiding citizens who wish to protect themselves and their valuables while away from home. Carrying a personal defensive weapon in a vehicle, however, does present issues that must be addressed, such safe storage and ready access. The challenge is that those two factors somewhat oppose each other. Safe storage usually means access is anything but quick and efficient, and vice versa.
That’s where Console Vault® comes in.
One of the first things we consider when looking for a firearm storage solution in a vehicle is, “Where do I put it?” When we’re talking handguns, the three options typically are under the seat (bad choice and an unsafe choice), in the glovebox, or in the center console. The latter two work, but they offer little or no security should you need to leave the firearm in your vehicle. Furthermore, the glovebox is a long and inconvenient (sometimes impossible) reach for most drivers, so that doesn’t help.
Console Vault takes a different approach. As the company name implies, their products are designed to turn your vehicle’s original center console into a lockable, yet conveniently accessible safe — one that is ideally suited for accommodating a defensive handgun, spare magazines, and other needful items and valuables.
Console Vault safes are designed to drop into your vehicle’s factory console with glove-like precision. The key benefits of this are two-fold.
First, a direct OE fit means no messy modifications are required to install the unit. The job is easy and lightning fast if you know how to turn a screwdriver or a ratchet wrench. Simple stuff. Second, because the Console Vault unit fits inside your OE console, passersby or potential thieves will never know it’s there or that you’re trying to protect something. A vehicle upgraded with a Console Vault looks completely stock, so it won’t draw the attention of ne’er-do-wells.
Console Vault in-vehicle safes are made of heavy, cold-rolled 12-gauge plate steel with welded tabs and notch seams. The lid includes a stout, continuous hinge in back that is spring-assisted for easy opening and a quick-grab finger pull positioned beneath the lock. Three lock styles are offered: a keyed barrel lock and a 3- or a 4-digit combination lock. The locks are drill-resistant and feature Console Vault’s Triple Guard lock system to resist prying. Also included are pull-out mats to protect the contents, prevent sliding, and to minimize noise and vibration.
Vehicle applications for the Console Vault are numerous and cover the most popular truck and SUV models with factory floor-mounted consoles, bench seat (under seat) consoles, and fold-down arm rest consoles. The company’s online product selection menu lets you quickly identify the Console Vault that will fit your vehicle. From there, simply choose the lock style you want and place your order.
We selected a Console Vault for our GMC Sierra with an under-seat console. With a cordless power drive at the ready, the installation took only minutes. The safe came with easy-to-follow instructions and the required attaching hardware.
Unlike many aftermarket products that promise “direct-fit, bolt-in installation,” the Console Vault truly delivered. The safe dropped smoothly into our stock under-seat console.
Once installed into the factory console, we simply ran the supplied screws through the safe’s pre-drilled mounting holes and into the sides of the factory console.
After securing the safe, we followed the instructions to custom-set our 3-digit combination lock, completing the installation.
As you can see, we have plenty of room inside the safe not only for our on-the-road handgun and a spare mag, but also for other necessities or valuables.
As we mentioned earlier, personal defense practitioners are often challenged to come up with good solutions for carrying defensive firearms in their vehicles. Some offer super-fast access but do not keep the firearm secured or out of sight. Others may offer some measure of theft security but require significant vehicle modification to install…often at the cost of losing valuable interior storage space. Among the aforementioned advantages of a Console Vault safe are the easy access to your firearm because the console is always in reach of the driver and the fact that, by installing the safe into the factory console, you lose no interior space. Win-win.
For more information on Console Vault products or to find a safe for your model vehicle, visit Console Vault and order direct from the factory.
Editor’s Note: Always consult state and local regulations regarding in-vehicle firearm transportation and always practice safe storage.