There has always been something magical about the movies. The way they bring age-old stories and ideas to life always manages to inspire us all. Along with the symbolic onscreen representation of heroes, we have also been provided with the iconic vehicles they travel in.
1. The Batmobile
The always impressive vehicle of the caped crusader: the Batmobile. There have been as many iterations of this iconic car as there have been actors playing the Dark Knight. In 1966 Adam West drove the modified Lincoln Futura Batmobile, Tim Burton gave the Batmobile a sleeker gothic look and Christopher Nolan came up with the more tank-like design from The Dark Knight trilogy. The Batmobile is as famous as Batman himself and is tricked out with as many gadgets as Batman’s utility belt.
2. Aston Martin
Just like Batman, James Bond is a man of many cars and gadgets. Though we have seen many different vehicles throughout 007 history, the most recognizable has always been the Aston Martin DB5. The first prototype made its debut in 1964’s Goldfinger, equipped with a rotating license plate, oil slick, and an ejector seat. Since then the DB5 has appeared in six other James Bond movies, including the most recent Skyfall. After Goldfinger wrapped, the original prototype was stripped of its weapons and resold by Aston Martin. Unfortunately, the model was stolen in 1997 from its owner at the time and has been missing ever since.
3. The DeLorean
The DeLorean DMC-12 (more commonly known as “the DeLorean”) is most famous for its appearance in the movie Back to the Future, along with its subsequent sequels. It’s distinct “gull-wing doors” and unpainted stainless steel body are identifying features for this would-be time traveling car. The DMC – 12 is actually the only model of the car that was ever produced by the company, due to DeLorean Motor Company’s bankruptcy in 1982.
4. The Mystery Machine
“Scooby Dooby Doo – where are you?” Ok sure, this groovy ghoul-chasing wagon is more recognizable in its 2-D form. But like it or not, there was not one but TWO live action adaptations of everyone’s favorite “meddling kids” and their snack-loving dog; so it makes the list. With its 70s model, psychedelic paint job and complete lack of backseat seatbelts the Mystery Machine is truly a product of its era. With all of the frightening hijinks that the gang got themselves into it always begged the question: where on Earth were there parents?
5. Ghostbusters – Ecto 1 Cadillac
“Who ya gonna call?” As we proved above with the Mystery Machine: any good car deserves a good theme song. What we have come to know as “The Ecto – 1” Cadillac is, of course, best remembered from the 1984 film Ghostbusters. The unique Ghostbusting car is a modified version of the Miller-Meteor ambulance, with the same hearse-like look to it. Only this time it wasn’t carrying the dead, it was fighting it.
6. 1961 Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder convertible
A young man named Ferris Bueller did what many of us dreamed of doing in our youth: he faked being sick and took a day off. There are so many memorable moments in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off: touring the city of Chicago, crashing a parade in the middle of downtown and of course being one step ahead of your unsympathetic principal. But one moment that sticks out for many children of the 80s (and beyond) is the iconic moment when Ferris and friend Cameron drive Cameron’s father’s pristine Ferrari around town. We all remember experiencing the agony of Cameron watching that Ferrari plummet to its fate from its garage to the ravine below.
7. Herbie the Love Bug
Herbie is the anthropomorphic Volkswagen Beetle that is self-aware and has an affinity for racing. A product of Disney, Herbie was the predecessor to later animated vehicular-driven films like Cars. With six films under his (timing) belt, Herbie is a big personality in a compact form. Here’s a fun fact for you: the last Herbie movie was made when Disney would still willingly employ Lindsay Lohan. So much can change in ten years…
8. Italian Job Mini Ford
Let’s make one thing clear: we’re not talking about the 2003 remake of the movie where Mark Wahlberg once again tried to make himself relevant again before later films like The Fighter. We’re talking about the original The Italian Job with Michael Caine – the one that made the Mini Coop a sensation in 1969. Director Peter Collinson, the film positioned the Mini as the perfect getaway car for the tight and windy streets of Italy. You’re welcome Mark Wahlberg.
9. American Graffiti – Ford Coupe
Imagine a time before time when George Lucas was not praised/blamed for all things Star Wars. This near-mythical time was 1973, when a young filmmaker by the same name made a movie called American Graffiti. While there are plenty of classic cars on display in this film, one of the most iconic cars that stands out among the rest is the 1966 Ford Coupe. The exposed engine in front represented a recklessness that is fully embodied in the film. I guarantee you’ll see this one at the next car convention.
10. Rally Yellow Chevrolet Camaro – Transformers Bumblebee
Michael Bay’s Transformers series of movies has raked in absurd amounts of money both overseas and here in the United States. Among all of the gratuitous product placements lies the character of Bumblebee: the courageously humble Autobot who tends to save the day. With his sleek design and innumerable pop culture references (via radio), Bumblebee is the perfect marketing machine. Originally Bumblebee was supposed to be a VW bug, but Michael Bay was worried that people would confuse him for Herbie. That’s why Herbie tops Bumblebee on this list Mr. Bay!
- Classic Feature: 1965 Aston Martin DB5
- For the DeLorean, it’s back to the present
- Cain reveals Italian Job ending
- The History of the Bumblebee and the Camaro