Over the years we’ve seen a greater variety of Batmobiles than we have of BMW bodystyles – which is, to say, a whole lot of ’em. What you see here is the latest, and it’s made out of Legos.
Appearing at this year’s Detroit Auto Show is the Caped Crusader’s latest ride of choice, as styled by Chevy and students in Cody Rouge (a neighborhood just north of Dearborn, Michigan). It’s essentially a larger version of the Batmobile that features in “The Lego Batman Movie” that’s set to hit theaters less than a month from now.
Stretching 17 feet long, the full-scale Lego mockup measures about the length of a Tahoe. Sitting over 9 feet wide and standing nearly 7 feet tall, though, it’s significantly wider and taller. But it only has two seats (perfect for one disguised Bruce Wayne and his ward or love interest), and don’t weigh a third of what one of the Chevy’s actual production SUVs does.
That’s because it’s made mostly out of plastic bricks – 344,187 of them, to be precise, in 17 different colors. They’re built around a frame composed of 86 feet of aluminum tubing which itself accounts for only 282.5 of the vehicle’s overall 1,695.5 pounds.
Chevy reports that it took 222 hours to design to 1,833 hours of put together, which comes out to an unfathomable three months of effort on a 24/7 basis. Put another way, if one person were to undertake the entire process from start to finish in normal working hours, it would have taken him or her a full year to complete. Fortunately the Lego Model Shop in Enfield, Connecticut, (where this thing was built) has more of its Master Builders on staff than that. But suffice it to say, this wasn’t an overnight passion project.
It’s not the first time that the Bowtie brand has contributed to the design and construction of a Batmobile. The jet-powered vehicle from 1989’s Batman Returns was built on an Impala’s chassis, and the versions from 1995’s Batman Forever and 1997’s Batman & Robin both used an off-road-spec Chevy ZZ3 V8. Even the Tumbler used in the recent Dark Knight trilogy packed a 5.7-liter GM V8. The first Batmobile in the Batman serial film was based on a Cadillac, and a 1963 show car was similarly based on a ’56 Oldsmobile Rocket 88.