5 Best Cameras for Car Photography

If you’re a car enthusiast and love capturing cool frames of automobiles, you need a good camera. And by good, we mean cameras that have a fast shutter speed and large sensor. These parameters ensure your car photos are not blurry and contain ample amounts of details. So, if you’re just starting off and looking for the best cameras for car photography, we’ve included a wide range of options.

best cameras for car photography

From entry-level DSLRs to full-frame beasts, you can pick the best one for you depending on your exact usage. We’ve also taken into account multiple price points that cater to everyone from beginners to professionals. That said, here are the best cameras for automotive photography. But before we get to them –

1. Canon EOS Rebel T7

  • Sensor: 24.1MP
  • Minimum shutter speed: 1/4000 seconds
Best car photography cameras 1

If you’re a beginner and just starting off with clicking pictures of cars, you don’t have to spend a lot of money on a car photography camera. The EOS Rebel T7 is an entry-level mirrorless camera with an APS-C image sensor that can capture some crisp images of cars.

Canon makes some good budget-friendly beginner cameras for various use cases. The Rebel T7 is one of them that fits the bill quite well for car photography. The 9-point autofocus system onboard ensures moving cars are in focus when you capture them. The shutter speed can hit 1/4000s which is also fast enough for a camera in this segment.

Pair it with a lens with a fast aperture and you can capture some excellent shots of cars. If you don’t want to pick up a new lens just yet, Canon bundles in their standard 18-55mm kit lens with the camera that should suffice most needs. However, users have mentioned that the Rebel T7 isn’t an ideal option for car videography since it doesn’t have any sort of in-body image stabilization (IBIS).

If you’re only going to be clicking stills for the foreseeable future, the Rebel T7 is a great starting point.

What We Like

  • Affordable
  • Good autofocus

What We Don’t Like

  • Not great for videos

2. Sony Alpha a6400

  • Sensor: 25MP
  • Minimum shutter speed: 1/4000 seconds
Best car photography cameras 2

The Sony a6400 is yet another camera with an APS-C sensor. While it’s quite similar to the Canon Rebel T7 in terms of functionality, the reason we recommend the a6400 over it is the physical size. The Sony a6400 is extremely compact which is a big plus for run-and-gun photography.

There are two types of car photography you can specialize in. One where you click photos of still cars and one where you capture moving automobiles. If you’re interested in the latter, you should ideally opt for a lighter camera — especially if you’re a beginner. That’s where the Sony a6400 excels.

The body of the camera is lightweight and compact so you can move it around with ease. You can carry it around your wrist using a lanyard or hang it around your neck for better stability. Along with being compact, the autofocus system on the a6400 is top-notch. Most users of the Sony a6400 have reported stellar performance from the camera, especially in terms of details.

It’s also worth noting that the a6400 excels at 4K video recording — with one big caveat. Just like the Rebel T7, there’s no IBIS so you’ll have to rely on a Sony lens with OSS or a camera gimbal for stabilization. If you want a reliable camera that can shoot excellent photos and is compact, you can’t go wrong with the Sony a6400.

What We Like

  • Compact form factor
  • Excellent autofocus

What We Don’t Like

  • Video stabilization is poor without a lens with OSS

3. Sony Alpha 7C

  • Sensor: 25.3MP
  • Minimum shutter speed: 1/8000 seconds
Sony A7C

What’s so special about the Sony a7C is that it carries the same portable form factor as the a6400 but still manages to incorporate a full-frame sensor. As a result, you get a camera with a bigger sensor size that captures more light while also being easy to carry around.

A full-frame camera ensures there’s no crop when capturing photos or videos. It also improves the low-light performance of the camera so if you plan on doing a lot of shoots at night or with artificial lighting, the Sony Alpha 7C will surely come in handy.

Along with a bigger sensor, the a7C also clicks photos faster thanks to a shutter speed of 1/8000s. Reviews mention the camera’s video recording capabilities are also excellent. However, the stabilization is average despite the camera featuring IBIS. That’s disappointing if you plan on recording a lot of videos.

Despite its shortcomings, content creators and photographers alike swear by the Sony Alpha 7C. This is mainly due to its form factor and superb image quality. If you travel a lot, the 7C is a superb pick. It’s worth noting that there’s no lens included with the camera body so you’ll have to buy one separately.

What We Like

  • Compact form factor
  • Captures excellent details

What We Don’t Like

  • Average stabilization even with IBIS

4. Nikon D850 Digital SLR

  • Sensor: 45.7MP
  • Minimum shutter speed: 1/8000 seconds
Nikon D850

One of the biggest strengths of the Nikon D850 is its full-frame backside illuminated (BSI) sensor that captures stunning images. The sensor has a resolution of 45.7MP which captures excellent details. Despite this, the D850 is extremely fast making it one of the top recommendations to shoot moving objects like cars.

Along with a fast shutter speed, the Nikon D850’s specialty is its ability to capture shots at 9fps. Essentially, the camera captures nine different images in the span of a second — with full autofocus capabilities. This is an absolute dream if you’re a car photographer.

Speaking of autofocus, the D850 has 153 focus points to ensure you don’t miss what’s important. Users have corroborated this by saying the camera is fast to focus even in low-light situations. If we have to nitpick, the only slight downside of the Nikon D850 is its form factor.

The camera is slightly bulky and heavy. However, considering the list of features and the capabilities of that sensor, you can look past this minor inconvenience.

What We Like

  • Fast shooting capabilities
  • Excellent autofocus even in low light

What We Don’t Like

  • Slightly heavy

5. Canon EOS R5

  • Sensor: 45MP
  • Minimum shutter speed: 1/8000 seconds
Canon EOS R5

If you want to capture photos faster than the D850, the Canon EOS R5 is the way to go. It can capture pictures at 12fps making it perfect for capturing speeding cars. Another unique feature of the EOS R5 is that it has dual SD card slots so if one goes kaput, you can use the backup memory card.

Do you want the absolute best camera for car photography? Then the EOS R5 is the undisputed king. While it may dent your pockets, the R5 produces stunning quality images and can even record videos at 8K. The high-resolution sensor captures impeccable details so even if you plan on using the camera for other purposes like sports or wildlife photography, you’re going to be impressed.

Users of the EOS R5 have gone as far as saying it’s one of the best cameras ever made by Canon which is saying something. The autofocus is fast even in low-light situations, and the excellent IBIS ensures small jitters are eliminated.

If you’re a professional photographer or videographer and you want to take the quality of your work to the next level, consider investing in the Canon EOS R5.

What We Like

  • 12fps shooting
  • Dual SD card slots
  • Excellent IBIS

What We Don’t Like

  • Pricey

FAQs for Car Photography Cameras

1. What are the factors to look for in a camera for car photography?

You should look at the shutter speed, continuous capture rate, and optionally, the dimensions of the camera before picking your weapon of choice.

2. Can I do car photography with my smartphone camera?

Absolutely! Smartphone cameras have improved drastically over the past few years which means you can capture some excellent pictures of cars using your smartphone as well. If you’re a beginner, you don’t necessarily have to invest in a camera.

3. Which lens should I get for car photography?

The primary focus when picking a lens to capture moving objects like cars is the aperture and focal length. A wide aperture is necessary to capture photos quickly while the focal length needs to be ideal to fit the car in your frame. If you have a camera that doesn’t have IBIS, you should also consider getting a lens that has optical stabilization.

Zoom Away

Fulfill your passion for shooting cars by picking up any of the best cameras for car photography mentioned above. Use your camera to zoom in on cars that zoom past you and capture stunning shots of all the automobiles you love!

Last updated on 30 August, 2023

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