Cars that can do more than just run on pavement were once considered as something that only existed in the movies, but nowadays we have cars that can travel in the air and on water, besides being functional on land. Flying cars are still away from being available to the average consumer, but there are companies that provide amphi-cars to anyone willing to pay the price on the tag. Amphibious cars are also safer and require far simpler and relatively more dependable technology than their aerial counterparts. Here are 7 examples of some of the world’s most amazing amphibious cars.
1. SeaRoader Amphibious Lamborghini Countach
SeaRoader’s Mike Ryan is the man responsible for converting this amazing car into a sea-faring vehicle. Ryan has converted jeeps, motorcycles, an ice-cream truck and London taxi cab into water-going cars. The project was expensive as anyone would expect, with the glass alone costing $3,007. The car has amphibious controls which have been beautifully incorporated into the dashboard. Hydraulic activators compress the advanced suspension system and a hydrofoil at the front lifts the lifts the car’s nose.
2. Dobbertin HydroCar
This somewhat incomplete vehicle sold for $130,000 on eBay despite creator, Rick Dobbertin, saying, “Still needs some additional water testing and ‘dialing-in’ to achieve its full potential.” The car actually transform into a boat with fenders shifting positions and the car is powered by a tuned Chevrolet engine that produces 762 horsepower. The main body of the car is made using type 304 stainless steel, so there are no worries about rusting for this sporty boat-car.
3. Rinspeed Splash
This hydro car was released in 2004 and is the world’s first amphibious car to be powered by natural gas. The 750cc, two-cylinder, engine is turbo-charged and the integrated hydrofoil design allows the car to hover 2 feet over water as well as sail through it. When hovering the car can reach speeds of up to 49 mph, while in boat form the top speed is 31 mph. On land, however, the car is capable of 124 mph and the carbon composite body gives it a futuristic look.
4. Sea Lion
Created by Marc Witt, the Sea Lion is one of the fastest amphibious cars with a top speed of 125 mph. The power comes from a Mazda rotary engine with 174 hp and the aluminium body, designed and created by Witt himself, makes the car lighter and hence, gives it amazing speed. In water, the car can reach 60 mph and is propelled by a Berkeley 12 JC pump. The car was sold to a buyer through the website, Fantasyjunction.com, though the final selling price of the car is unknown. However, the initial asking price was $259,500.
5. CAMI Hydra Spyder
The Spyder is produced by Cool Amphibious Manufacturers International (CAMI) and is part sports car, part speedboat. The 6.0-liter Corvette LS2 V8 allows the car to reach 125 mph on the road and 53 mph in water. The company claims that the hydro car is unsinkable, thanks to the fiberglass top, built on top of the aluminium alloy hull which is filled with flotation foam. When going from land to sea, the driver simply pushes a button which causes the wheels to retract into the hull.
6. WaterCar Panther
This is the first amphibious SUV on the list and it is as capable to travel on mud and sand as it is capable of travelling in water. The Panther can reach speeds of up to 80 mph on land and 44 mph in water. It is powered by a 3.7-liter Honda VTEC engine when on land and a Panther Jet Engine while in water. Water car is the same company which created the Python, the world’s fastest amphibious car. The Python was capable of speeds over 125 mph on land and 60 mph in the water.
7. Gibbs Aquada
Created in New Zealand by Gibbs Sports Amphibians, the Aquada was made famous when it set the record after crossing the English Channel, piloted by Richard Branson, in one hour, forty minutes and six seconds. Powered by a 2.5-liter V6 engine that produces 175 hp, the Aquada can reach 100 mph on land and 30 mph on water. When in the water, the car uses a jet (powered by the engine) to produce thrust that propels it across the water. Unlike other amphibious cars, the Aquada is not modified to be a hydro car but was rather purpose-built to be amphibious.