Christmas shopping has begun and, for that Dark Knight fan in your life, may I suggest an authentic Batmobile from “Batman”? Yes, a real-deal Batmobile that was used in Tim Burton’s Batman (1989) and Batman Returns (1992) sequel, when Michael Keaton was Bruce Wayne and Gotham City was an Art Deco dream. Classic Auto Mall is offering this part of cinematic history for $1,500,000. That is a steep cost for any holiday gift, but can you really put a value on making a Batman fan’s life complete?
“The car was designed by conceptual illustrator Julian Caldow and built by the John Evans special effects team at Pinewood studios in England,” the listing states. “Referred to as a prop car, it only has an electric motor. After its movie run, it wound up at New Jersey’s Six Flags Great Adventure, where it was used as a prop for the Batman Returns ride, which by the way was a thriller in itself as a suspended looping and twisting roller coaster. After its run there, it was purchased by our consigner, who is an avid movie car collector. ZAP!”
The Batmobile from the 1966 TV series was hardly subtle, and this version is an extreme collection of curves and wings that seemed to foreshadow the Nissan DeltaWing. I can’t imagine it was easy to maneuver the narrow streets of Gotham in a coupe that was almost 20-feet long — the 2022 Rolls-Royce Phantom is about the same length but, then again, the Batmobile could alter its axles to make itself narrower, and a central “foot” could raise the car and rotate it 180 degrees. Those driver’s aids eliminate the need for three-point turns or the always-fun J-turn yet make vigilante crime-fighting easy.
As mentioned before, the Batmobile is an EV with a 48-volt set up that could propel this movie prop to a top speed of 25-30 mph. It looks fast sitting still, which is convenient for its underpowered drivetrain, and the seller notes the vehicle’s batteries haven’t been charged since approximately 1993. But don’t let the lack of speed get you down because it has a working flame thrower. There’s no mention in the ad if the various machine guns, bombs and the like are functional, but I would lean towards a hard no on those optional features.
This isn’t a street-legal vehicle, it’s not titled and is sold as “Bill of Sale” only, so car chases to take down the Joker or the Penguin can’t be on our public roads. Regardless of who is your preferred Batman (I’m a Christian Bale fan), this is the rare chance to own a pretty dope movie car from a good era for Batman movies.