Throughout the history of cinema, there have been cars that were almost more recognizable than the films they came from. Everybody thinks that James Bond only drives an Aston Martin DB5, but this isn’t the case—he’s driven dozens of different cars throughout his seven-decade-spanning filmography. And the DB5 doesn’t even show up until Goldfinger, the third Bond film. If you want to know more about beloved vehicles in film, check out this list of the most famous cars in the history of cinema.
Doc Brown’s DeLorean DMC-12 in Back To the Future
The DeLorean DMC-12 was conceived by John Z. DeLorean, who was a former General Motors executive. The car was his dream project after he left GM to create his own firm. The rebellious, radical design of the DeLorean wasn’t enough to attract buyers, though, which meant the car was a commercial failure. Fortunately, the DeLorean has returned from being nearly forgotten thanks to the Back To the Future films, which enshrined the DeLorean as a plutonium-powered time machine. The iconography of the vehicle sometimes feels like it overshadows the classic film, making it arguably the most famous car in the history of cinema.
The Ectomobile in Ghostbusters
The film’s Ectomobile was a run-down vehicle saved by the cash-strapped Ghostbusters. The floaty suspension and curb-weight design made its 325-hp V8 engine’s performance look pretty terrible. It is quite difficult to say anything bad about the beauty of the Ectomobile, though, and doing so seems to be blasphemous. You may love it or hate it, but either way, it’s definitely one of the favorites on our list.
Herbie in The Love Bug
It would never have occurred to anyone that the generally disliked Beetle car type would be responsible for a car that became one of the greatest automobiles in movie history. Although originally introduced as a low-cost and short-bodied car for people who stood at a below-average height, it wasn’t until after World War II that the Beetle truly gained the widespread favor it has today. The Beetle’s design had changed quite a bit by 1960, and its unusual yet endearing character arc helped win audiences over just as much as its memorable role in the Herbie series of movies.
Jeep Wrangler YJ in Jurassic Park
When you think of Jurassic Park, the dinosaurs and the music undoubtedly come to mind—but the cars are just as worthy of attention and praise. The primary form of transportation on Isla Nublar are beautiful custom Jeeps that immediately give you the sense of what Jurassic Park itself is meant to be: a peaceful and fun tour. The colorfully branded cars are some of the most iconic Jeeps in film, and they’re certainly the most famous.
The Bluesmobile in The Blues Brothers
Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi both starred in 1980s cult classic, The Blues Brothers, alongside their vintage police car, the Bluesmobile. It featured plenty of hidden powers and no problem getting across a rickety drawbridge. One of the film’s most memorable scenes is Aykroyd’s characterization of the automobile, where he describes each part of the car as being made for “cops.”