Turtle Wax Black Box cleaning/waxing kit

Turtle Wax Black Box package contents
The Black Box package includes black-tinted cleaner, wax and detailer plus two foam applicator pads. Photo © Aaron Gold

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Black cars look great when they're clean -- but keeping them clean can be a major pain. Turtle Wax has a product called Black Box, a cleaning and waxing system designed specifically for black vehicles. I saw a demonstration of Black Box during a visit to Turtle Wax headquarters, but I wanted to try it myself. Unfortunately, the only black car I have access to is the BMW my friends and I are running in the 24 Hours of Lemons, a race for $500 cars.

A junkyard-quality Bimmer is hardly a fair test, but I decided to give it a go anyway -- and I was really impressed by the results.

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  • Works as advertised
  • Easy and quick to use
  • Works on neglected paint finishes


  • Messy
  • Microfiber towels not included

Expert Review: Turtle Wax Black Box cleaning/waxing kit

The Black Box kit (link goes to photo) contains a bottle of cleaner, a bottle of Carnauba wax, and two bottles of spray detailer. All of these products are tinted with black pigment, which makes them a bit like shoe polish for your car. The kit also includes a pair of foam applicator pads, but it does not include any microfiber towels, and you will need a couple in order to clean your car.

Application is about as easy as it gets: Rub on the cleaner with a foam applicator, allow it to dry, spray with the detailer and rub off with a towel, then repeat the process with the wax.

I didn't expect Black Box to do much with our clapped-out car's neglected finish; boy, was I in for a shock. I started with a small section of the roof, and five minutes later it looked just like the before/after picture on the box. The bit I'd cleaned was a deep, lustrous black, while the untreated paint looked milky and grey.

My teammates were amazed. "Wow," said Joe. "Looks like a piano," said Tim. "Holy s--t!" said Jeff. Soon our ragged racer had a nice, glossy finish, and we began to worry that the judges would think we'd paid more for the car than the $500 we were allowed.

While my teammates loved the results, I was impressed by how easy Black Box is to use. Carnauba wax usually requires some serious elbow grease, but the spray-on detailer makes removal as easy as cleaning the windows.

A couple of gripes: First, this stuff is seriously messy and hard to wash off. Turtle Wax recommends wearing gloves, and you'll want to do that. Second, the instructions say to use one applicator pad for each product, but since the pads are identical, it's easy to mix them up. Turtle Wax really ought to include two different color pads, or at least mark them with a 1 and a 2.

Overall, I was seriously impressed -- here, for once, is a product that does exactly what it promises. If you own a black car, Turtle Wax Black Box is the easy way to keep it looking good. -- Aaron Gold


  • Cleaning and waxing kit specially made for black vehicles
  • Retail price: $21.95 (Check prices on Amazon.com)
  • Includes black-tinted pre-wax cleaner, black-tinted Carnauba wax, black-tinted detailer spray, applicator pads

    Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.