Wheels-Near-U blog

Movie Motors: Batman’s Batmobile

Posted in Movie Motors by Wheels Near U Team on the January 19th, 2008

Batmobile on Movie Motors

Last week we featured the Mini as the star of both the original and the remade versions of the Italian Job as part of our Motoring Movie Series. The Mini was a great feature to the film, shown to use their size as an advantage to allude capture. The mini is also an everyday car, making the film realistic and engaging. This week we are looking at something far more fantastic and original – Batmans car – The Batmobile.

Original Batmobile

Like the Mini, the batmobile has had many many models over the decades. It started out in cartoon form in the late nineteen thirties where his car is described as a “specially built high-powered auto“. The car appears to have been modelled on the 1937 Ford Coupe with a stretched out bonnet, this becomes almost a batman trademark in later versions.

The Batmobile continued to live on through comics, where in 1941 it was featured as a bright red convertible with a roof arrangement that hinted at bat-wings. Accoding to the comic it was however “so fast that bystanders cannot believe their eyes. “. By spring of the same year the batmobile had found a much more recognisable form, the long bonnet of the original bat-car was the same, however this car was streamlined with a tall fin and a Gothic looking bat head on the very front of it. This was the first appearance of a black bat car – something most people associate with batmans bat-wheels.

1960s Batmobile

This batcar stuck for around 20 years in various similar forms, taking part in all sorts of bat adventures and points even seeming doomed – for example The Joker forces batman to drive off a cliff into a ravine, obliterating the batmobile, this however doesn’t stop the fabled car which appears strait away again in the next story. By 1964 the series was considered to be old hat and the creators decided for a change. Opting for a new style of cartoon, DC Comics redesigned the characters and cars – this is the first introduction of the yellow oval/bat symbol used from then on.

The next incarnation of batman’s ride was his ‘discreet’ batmobile of the mid-seventies which appeared completely like an average car except to distinguish the car a black bat image was shown on the bonnet. This average appearance did not last long for batman who swiftly returned to unconventional styling and a black car in the 80’s.

Batmobile 1980s

Tim Burton directed the 1989 Batman film, which brought the cartoon character to the dark and twisted, art-deco style city of Gotham. In this film batman had a set of wheels which reflected the city, with a long, sleek design similar to the first batmobiles in the cartoons, yet with a Burton Spin. It reflected the past generations of batmobiles while introducing a new racing modern edge. It is considered to be styled based on the Porsche 962 and similar cars from the time.

As with most super-heros batmans car featured an array of gadgets, ranging from twin retractable automatic machine guns to a Cocoon feature that shells the car in armour plated metal, very handy on the dark streets of Gotham. The car was powered by a Jet Turbine the car ran on a special high octane (97%) petrol and paraffin mixture and actually worked for the film. So much so that the fuel it burnt was so expensive that only a max of a 15 second run for the most used shot of the vehicle.

Batmobile Film

For the next two batman films (Batman Forever and Batman & Robin) the bat-mobile largely maintained its stylised black appearance while adding features such as self levelling hubcaps that always showed the bat emblem correctly, two seats and a rear view mirror. The car had new tricks to, such as a re-routable jet exhaust and car grappling hooks that combined let the car drive vertically up walls.

Lamorghini Reventon

Most recently batman starred in Batman Begins (2005) where the rocket shape batmobile of previous escapades is dropped in favour of a more stylised tank link design. More similar to Frank Millers version of batman (named “The Dark Night Returns”.) The production designer of the film described this batmobile as “a cross between a Lamborghini and a Hummer”. This quote was only reinforced when lamboghini recently announced its extreme hyper car the Reventon. The car features sharp stealth-plane like looks similar to the batmobile from Batman Begins.

Batmans Car – The Batmobile – undeniably a movie motor that will go down in history as one of the most famous. Thousands of replica models exist in the world, modelled on many of the multiple generation bat vehicle – which was your favourite bat-mobile?

This look at the Batmobile has been part of our series finding some of the best movie motors of the world. To read more just visit the movie motors section of our blog or visit our Motoring Gallery!


6 Responses to 'Movie Motors: Batman’s Batmobile'

Subscribe to comments with RSS

  1. on January 25th, 2008 at 1:04 pm

    […] Over this series we have seen a wide variety of movie motors, from the multiple generations of the batmobile last week to the mustang muscle car from Bullitt and this week we see the fictional car (similarly […]

  2. Kory said,

    on January 26th, 2008 at 10:08 am

    I know a person who make a real nice replica of the Tumbler……BATMOBILE

  3. Rowland Eturma said,

    on July 23rd, 2008 at 3:12 pm

    How come the Batmobile from The Animated Series never got considered? From all observations, whoever designed that Batmobile from The Animated Series deserves recognition because it sure is a lot better than the Joel Schumacher-directed Batman films. The Animated Series Batmobile is the coolest Batman car i’ve ever seen.

  4. magnapack user said,

    on February 11th, 2009 at 3:18 am

    I absolutely love my exhaust I purchased a magnaflow for my mustang. I love it and suggest it to anyone that is in the market I got the Magnaflow 15815 Exhaust System for my stang, thanks again

  5. Magnaflow said,

    on February 11th, 2009 at 5:07 pm

    Hey very nice blog!! Man it add this to digg

  6. Isabella said,

    on May 12th, 2009 at 7:11 am

    As a Newbie, I am always searching online for articles that can help me on this subject. Thank you!