When I was a kid, I loved Corvettes. For one reason and one reason only. They were the closest thing to a Batmobile I'd ever seen. It was a dream of mine to one day own one and put fins on it. But as I got older, that dream was reluctantly recognized for the pipe dream that it was. Or was it? Recently, I've been finding out that there are a great many homemade - or at least custom-made - Batmobiles out there in the world already. Here are just a handful of them.
This lifesized model of the Batmobile from Batman: The Animated Series is amazing. More pics here, although this isn't the website of the builder.
This Batmobile, dubbed Batmobile 2000, from actor, writer, screenwriter, photographer, illustrator and designer Christopher C. Canole, is so impressive that I believe it was mistakenly (?) rumoured to be for one of the films in the Burton-Schumacher era. The link has four pics with front, side and (very impressive) rear views, but since they don't easily download I don't want to step on Mr. Canole's copyright and will just show the pic on the front page. Follow the link above and see all the amazing shots, though, and you won't be disappointed. And Christopher, if you ever stumble across my site - wow!
This 22 foot long Batmobile was built by Oscar Pumpin, who was inspired by Batman Forever, and cost a reported $325,000. Again, plenty more photos at the link.
I've blogged before about Willie J. Perry, the Batman of Birmingham, a man who spent all his time dressed up in a costume that resembled Evel Knievel more than the Caped Crusader, driving around in his suped-up 1971 Ford Thunderbird, dubbed the Rescue Ship, helping stranded motorists and being a good samaritan. Willie died when I was just a kid, asphixiated while working under his car in his garage, but he was a real life superhero (and a personal hero of mine). Here is his car:
Don't know anything about this homemade Batmobile. I think the concept of it is perhaps a little cooler than the execution, at least around the windshield, but if it were a little less lumpy there it would be cool, and I love the hood/grill.
This one not so much:
But you've got to love this homemade 1940s Golden Age style Batmobile:
Don't know anything about this one and wish I had a better picture:
And what's not to love about BMW's latest, cloth-covered, shape-shifting "Batmobile-style" concept car, the Gina, which can change its shape at the touch of a button. Reportedly, "the headlights open like eyes from behind the stretchable fabric, which shifts at speed to make the car more aerodynamic." Wow:
Still, my favorite is hands-down this 1989 Keaton Batmobile Replica, owned by Mark Shields, and built in 1991 by a design team out of none other than a classic 1978 Corvette!!! Yes, a Vette, and the result is somehow more sublte and better looking than the Keaton original. It's apparently for sale for just $50,000, in case any of you are wondering what to get me for Christmas. (Update 1/21/09: Apparently this amazing machine was built by Randy Hecht of Sept 2001.)
Sweet, huh? And Santa will vouche that I've been very nice this year.