These are some of the strangest vehicles ever made. These unusual cars can drive on water, self drive, and more.
The Rinspeed sQuba was the first ever car to be driven on both land and underwater. The sQuba’s inspiration came from, you guessed it, a James Bond movie. In The Spy Who Loved Me, Agent 007 drove a Lotus Esprit that could travel through water. The chassis for the newer Lotus Elise was used for the sQuba. Three electric motors can be found in the sQuba – one for land, two for water. It also has an open cockpit. Wondering how a driver and a passenger might breathe while taking a trip alongside sea life or after eating chili? The sQuba comes equipped with scuba style diving regulators.
Built on Isle of Man in 1962 by Cyril Cannell, the tiny three-wheeled Peel P50 still holds the Guinness World record as the smallest car ever to go into production. At just 54 inches (1.37 m) long and 39 inches (1 m) wide, it’s not hard to see why. It makes the Smart car look like an SUV. The top speed? Right up there with Usain Bolt – a fire blazing 37 miles per hour (60 km/h). It had
no reverse, and the driver had to physically push or lift the car into a narrow space. An inconvenience, yes, but maybe well worth it for a car that gave you 100 miles per gallon (2.3 l/100km). Selling originally for just 199 British pounds, the P50 is considered a high priced antique these days, commanding over $120,000 in auctions. Production ceased in 1965 only to resume in 2010.
Most people look at homeownership as part of achieving the American Dream. Though living in an off road truck may not seem to jibe with our long held aspirations, Bran Ferren’s “Kiravan” could have us thinking otherwise. The KiraVan, built by California tech designer Ferren for his daughter Kira, is unlike any truck ever built. Inside you’d feel as though you’re stepping into a spacecraft. Two computers allow Ferren to control any aspect of the supervan. It has a full kitchen and dining area that could rival the ones in high-priced condos. Performance wise, the KiraVan can go up to 2,000 miles (3200 km) without resupply and climb slopes as steep as 45 degrees. Antennas and dishes give the KiraVan more than its share of telecommunication functionality. Driving a six wheeler has never been so extravagant.
The BMW GINA may be a vehicle’s interpretation of life copying art. It is a fabric designed, shape-shifting concept sports car. It’s one of things you’d see in a Michael Bay movie but never thought it would ever be possible. Well some amazing engineers put their heads together and assembled a sports car with flexible, water resistant, translucent man-made fabric known as polyurethane coated Spandex. This results in the GINA being able to withstand high and low temperatures without shrinking or swelling. GINA, incidentally, stands for Geometry and Functions in ‘N’ Adaptations. When the butterfly doors open, you can see the fabric exterior stretch. And the lights shine throughout the car because the skin is translucent. The hood opens from the center as the fabric parts to expose the engine. The polyurethane’s strength has been maximized to its highest potential. Could steel be a thing of the past?
The Devel 16 is the V16 hypercar attraction with 5000 hp. You heard right. Five thousand hp. We’re talking from 0 to 60 in 1.8 seconds. It turns the future into the present quickly. Built by Michigan-based manufacturer Steve Morris Engines, the Devel’s top speed is an incredible 348 miles per hour (560 km/h). In fact, the specs are so off the chart that some critics have remained skeptical. They’re quick to point out that for a price tag of $1,000,000, the Devel’s other features like solid disc brakes and windshield wiper are likened to regular blue collar cars. More importantly, tests have shown that the so-called 5,000hp is really more like 3500 to 4515. Still, mind-boggling though. The Devels’s design would make Tim Burton, director of the 1989 version Batman proud. And the Devel may be just as scarce, as concept cars of this type usually are.
Why drive when you feel like flying? Better yet, why take two different modes of transportation when can have both capabilities in one? The Terrafugia Transition is a street legal flying car that can do 70 when on the road but contains a pusher propeller that enables it to fly. Its most obvious feature are the two folded wings and twin tail,which immediately tell us that this thing isn’t just made for squeezing through AM traffic. In fact, it might be the perfect invention if any bumper-to-bumper mayhem is anticipated. At a unit cost of $279,000, only two have been built since 2006. In 2015, it was announced that after numerous modifications and quality tests, the first customer order should be delivered in 2017. Don’t expect to take the family to the Colorado Rockies with it anytime soon. As of now, the Transition only fits two people
The Superbus from the Netherlands can be thought of as the Air Dubai of buses. It’s like a 50 foot black mamba on wheels. Most high speed performance cars can only seat a few, while the high speed electric Superbus is capable of carrying as many as 20 passengers. It can do 160mph (257 km/h) , has 16 wing doors, and comes equipped with everything you might expect in a limo just with outstanding horsepower. Friends will be amazed that when your party of fifteen shows up at the prom with what could be considered a stretch Porsche. For all its fanciness, the fares are said to be comparable with regular limo services. Guess you can be taken for a ride without being taken for a ride.
Touted as the world’s most fuel-efficient car back in 2011, the XL1’s huge selling point is that it can go up to 261 miles per gallon (0.9 l/100 km). That’s a mind boggling fact that has many car enthusiasts scratching their heads. The hybrid/electric car achieves this with a most impressive 0.189 drag coefficient, helped by the fact that the seats are staggered making the car narrower in the front. As most of its outer shell is made of carbon fiber, soaking wet, this sweet ride weighs only 1,700 pounds (771 kg). It does 0-62 mph in 11.9 seconds with top speed of 98 mph (158 km/h), and the battery is good for 22 miles (35 km) of electric driving before recharge. Still, like many concept cars, you’d have to buy your way into an elite club to take one home with you. Only 200 are available.
Mercedes F 015
When we think of self-driving cars we think about getting hammered and then demanding the car take us home with a pitstop to taco bell. Or engaging in recreational activities while driving. Well that dream may one day be reality. The Mercedes F 015 is a concept car designed to be completely autonomous. It allows the driver, or in this case, the passenger to tackle other tasks while the car takes care of getting you from point A to point B. The F 015 uses your hand gestures and even eye movements to navigate the control panel. A coffee table extends out for leisure activities. You can take a meeting or take a nap. The F 015 boasts a mean silver exterior that might remind one of The Matrix, gets you 683 miles of zero emission driving with a top speed of 125 mph. It has an elaborate LED display on the rear lights warning drivers behind when to stop or slow down. It has rotating seats for lounge mode and classy “saloon” doors.
Ever thought you could purchase a Lambo for under $27,000? Sounds too good to be true. The body alone probably costs five times that. Well, not only is this particular Lamborghini Countach under $27,000, it can also swim on water. That’s because it’s a replica that was listed on United Kingdom eBay for £18,995. The replica is said to be as good as it gets, with its body molded from a real Countach 5000QV. What’s ironic is that the door operation and panel gaps have been listed as beyond satisfactory, while some actual Countachs have encountered criticism in those areas. Built by SeaRoader Amphibious Vehicles founder Mike Ryan, the Amphibious Lamborghini is far from a novelty toy. It has twin propellers, dual rudders, a front hydrofoil, and hydraulics to pull wheels and make water travel possible. James Bond would be proud.
A car is the last thing you’d expect to be made out of wood, but actually, looking into history, that’s precisely what many of the antique vehicles were built on. But that was then, and now it would certainly seem odd for a sports car that looks like a Lamborghini to depend on trees for its manufacturing. However, a team led by Joe Harmon bucked convention when they created the Splinter, a high performance car designed with wood composites. It features a fiery LS7 engine with 700 hp and a top speed of 240 miles per hour (386 km/h). Due to its material, the Splinter actually has a better strength to weight ratio than cars made of aluminum or steel. People would guess it takes a whole lot of glue to put this bad boy together and it does. A wide variety of super advanced sticky stuff was used to keep the parts together.