The Weirdest Looking Cars You’ve Ever Seen
Depending on the look, cars can symbolize a lot of things. Your ride might demonstrate your prosperity, your view of life as a whole or your personality. So, what happens when you’re super-rich and kind of weird? You drive around in some strange-looking cars that look like they were stolen from a sci-fi movie set or Elon Musk’s next big event.
This collection of the 30 weirdest looking cars could make you drool with envy or wonder exactly how it went so wrong. Either way, these crazy vehicles are sure to blow your mind! Take a look!
The Sebring-Vanguard CitiCar was a briefly produced electric car. The company that made the bizarre-looking car was based in Sebring, Florida, at the time. It was sold to Commuter Vehicles a few years later.
The CitiCar was inspired by Club Car’s golf cart design — yes, you read that right — partially in response to the 1970’s gasoline crisis. The car came in three models, all of which had the flat diagonal front, flat roof and nearly vertical flat back. The car had a wimpy 2.5 HP motor and used a 48v battery pack to run.
If you’re looking for a super-fast car that could be confused with an aircraft, the ThrustSSC is your vehicle. The name even stands for Supersonic Car (SSC). This British jet car set the world land speed record on October 15, 1997, whizzing past sensors at 736 miles per hour. Whoa!
The car was followed by a second model, the Thrust2, and both are currently housed at the Coventry Transport Museum in Coventry, England. This model is a whopping 54 feet long and 12 feet wide and weighs nearly 10 tons.
The narrow roads of Europe created the need for things like the microcar, and the BMW Isetta is one of the weirdest looking ones inspired by this movement. Its weird egg shape and bubble-like windows helped earn the car the nickname “the bubble car.”
The Isetta was the world’s first mass produced car to achieve a whopping 94 miles per gallon fuel efficiency, which made it the top-selling single-cylinder car in the world at the time (1955). The car was designed to use a motorcycle engine. Cool or crazy? It’s hard to say.
1956 Buick Centurion
The Buick Centurion was first unveiled at the Motorama Show. The body of the car was made from fiberglass, while the interior was designed to feel and look like the cockpit of an airplane. The car was intended to be aerodynamic for speed, and it certainly achieved that goal, thanks to the 325-horsepower engine.
Interestingly, the Centurion was also ahead of its time in other ways. A camera in the rear let the driver know what traffic was doing via a screen mounted on the dashboard. This one looks snazzy and smart, with just a tiny bit of weird thrown in — especially when you remember it was the ’50s.
Named for the bizarre resemblance to the Egyptian scarab beetle, the Stout Scarab can be considered the world’s first production minivan. It was prototyped in 1946 and became the world’s first car to use fiberglass for the bodyshell and air suspension.
The car was created by the Stout Motor Car Company out of Detroit, Michigan, as an experimental car in the 1930s and 1940s. The design eliminated the chassis and driveshaft to create a low, flat floor, in stark contrast to other cars of the day. The designer envisioned the machine as a sort of office on wheels.
Sadly, this crazy car was never mass produced but instead remained a concept car. The Cadillac Cyclone was designed by Harley Earl as a testbed for futuristic styling and technology in cars. The unique design included engine exhaust that was piped out just ahead of the front wheels instead of out the back.
The car also had a radar-operated collision avoidance system with radar sensors in the twin nosecones at the front of the car. Talk about futuristic! We’re only just starting to see this kind of technology released in mass production cars in the past few years.
Smart ForTwo Cabriolet
Okay, so these cars are actually kind of common to find on the road in one form another, but the Smart ForTwo Cabriolet still earns a spot for being extremely weird looking. It launched globally in 2016, with loads of extra safety reinforcements added compared to previous models.
Other models have been around since as early as 2000. These weird little cars have had nearly two decades to develop, and the technology has advanced, but they are still just as strange looking today as they were back then. Of course, they come in a convertible form, so that’s something.
Chevrolet El Camino
Fans of My Name Is Earl are sure to recognize some models of this kooky, truck-like car. The Chevy El Camino was a coupe pickup suggested by Harley Earl – no relation to Earl – in 1952. It was based on existing models of hatchbacks that were adapted into this odd hybrid of a truck-car.
The El Camino came with a full-sized Chevrolet drivetrain, giving it more power than the other guys. In 1959, more than 22,000 of them were purchased, but the next year, their favor declined by a third, thanks to a drop in horsepower — and possibly the less weird look.
If you have ever been to a Catholic parade where the Pope is a participant, you have probably seen this one in person. The Popemobile was designed for the Pope to use during his public appearances. Over the years, it has gone through a lot of changes, including some pretty weird-looking options with “bubbles.”
The first Popemobile was created for Pope Paul VI in 1965. The unique vehicle was a modified Lincoln Continental. Others have included an open-air model with bulletproof glass around the Pope, thanks to the assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II, as well as a sort of tour car with multiple seats.
Love convertibles and trucks? Then you will love the weird-looking Chevrolet SSR — super sport roadster. Manufactured by the Michigan motor company between 2003 and 2006, this weird truck has a retractable hardtop that lets in the open air as you speed down the highway to the farm or the city.
If the design feels a little retro in its weirdness, it’s because it was inspired and semi-modeled after the late 1940’s Advance Design pickup trucks that were around for 13 years. About 24,000 of these convertible trucks were produced in a four-year period.
Bugatti Type 57T Tourer
For an odd sports car that you would probably only see in photos, look to the Bugatti Type 57T Tourer. The design was created in 1934, and more than 710 examples were produced over the next eight years. The company stopped making the unique motor vehicles in 1940.
The Tourer was a fast car in its day, reaching 115 miles per hour, pushing past the performance of previous models — as well as most other vehicles in general. Part of this was due to the unique engine design that implemented a train of spur gears at the rear of the engine.
Built in 1938 as a prototype vehicle, the Phantom Corsair is one of those strange-looking cars you kind of expect to see on an old Batman comic book cover but never in somebody’s driveway. The two-door sedan holds six passengers and was way ahead of its time with its sleek, futuristic design.
Another detail bit makes this long car so weird is that it was only 57 inches tall while incorporating fully skirted wheels and completely flush fenders. The interior also reads a bit like a Batmobile, with an instrument panel that includes a compass and altimeter, similar to what you might find in an airplane.
General Motors Le Sabre
Another concept car, the GM Le Sabre is a weird one you might spot in some movies or in the occasional antique car museum. The car was designed in 1951, and a lot of folks consider it the most important show car of the 1950s.
The design is different from most of the cars we think of as ’50s hot rods, but the wrap-around windshield and tail fin on this car became a huge part of the design standard for other cars after its introduction. This car was another brainchild of Harley Earl, the designer responsible for so many of these oddball cars.
If you want to talk about sci-fi looks, then let’s chat about the Ferrari Modulo. This car looks like a flat-out alien. It was designed by Paolo Martin of the Italian Carrozzeria Pininfarina and unveiled at the 1970 Geneva Motor Show. The strange, wedge-shaped car has a canopy roof that slides forward to allow entry.
The car was originally black — the color when it was first shown — but was later repainted a showy white color. It won 22 different awards related to the unique design. In 2014, it was purchased by James Glickenhaus to be restored and brought back to full operating condition.
General Motors Firebird
Not to be confused with the less-cool Pontiac Firebird, the General Motors Firebird looks like it belongs on a fantasy spy film poster from the ’50s. The prototype car came in several models, including the Firebird I, Firebird II and Firebird III.
The car wasn’t actually intended for production but was used as a showcase vehicle for illustrating extremes in technology and design that the company could achieve. The cars now chill at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan, and make their rounds at car shows periodically. You might even get to see one of them one day!
If you think this car looks familiar — in blue, perhaps? — then you would be correct. The Reliant Regal is the spunky little three-wheeled car that’s popped up all over the place in pop culture. It has specifically become a kind of symbol of British eccentricity.
You might have spotted it in some of the older Mr. Bean episodes or on the BBC sitcom Only Fools Have Horses. The funny little car seems to have a personality all its own while being one of the weirdest things you’ll ever see on the road. These vehicles were manufactured between 1953 and 1973.
Another quirky little three-wheeled car is the microcar known as Peel P50. It was made from 1962 to 1965 by the Peel Engineering Company on the Isle of Man, Scotland. In 2010, it won its place in the Guinness Book of World Records as the smallest production car ever made.
The odd little car has no reverse gear, but a handle on the rear end of the vehicle makes it possible to physically maneuver as needed. It was designed originally as a city car for “one adult and one shopping bag.” It only has one door on the left side.
Yet another three-wheeled car, the Davis Divan takes a twist on the weirdness and ups it by becoming a convertible that kind of looks like a bullet train. The car was made by the Davis Motorcar Company between 1947 and 1949 and was based on the “Californian” roadster.
Davis Divan was the third of the prototypes that finally landed in 1947 as the designer intended. An aggressive publicity campaign followed with numerous magazine appearances and a lavish public unveiling at a fancy hotel before a promo trip around the United States. The excitement didn’t last, nonetheless.
The Oscar Mayer Wienermobile
Of course, what list of crazy cars would be complete without the good ol’ Oscar Mayer Wienermobile? The vehicle has changed faces a few times over the years, but all have centered on a hot dog cradled in an inviting, glutenous hot dog bun intended to make you drool.
The first Oscar Mayer Wienermobile appeared on the scene in 1936 and was designed by Oscar Mayer’s nephew, Carl Mayer. Since that time, numerous variants have hit the road, driven by the Hotdoggers deemed worthy of the famous task. They sometimes hand out Weiner whistles as well.
Okay, so this little weirdo came out in 1998 and is still currently in production. It was originally sold in Japan and then introduced to North American and European markets in 2009. It will be discontinued in Japan in December 2019, so if you want one, you’d better grab it now.
In 2009, the Cube was dubbed one of the “Top 10 Coolest Cars Under $18,000” by Kelly Blue Book (KBB). It also rated highly in safety picks, design awards, top 10 road trip car — also by KBB — and even the best car for dog owners in 2010.
Minivans are kind of weird looking to begin with, but when you add in the intelligent and exotic design of a Fiat, you get this compact weirdo: the Fiat Multipla. The van is shorter and wider than its rivals, with two rows of three seats, instead of three rows of two seats like most others.
The Multipla was originally based on the Fiat Bravo, a far less weird-looking vehicle. Although it kind of looks like it should be something straight out of the ’80s, this van was manufactured and marketed as recently as 2013.
Also known as the Cabin Scooter, this is another strange three-wheeled “bubble car.” This one was designed by an aircraft engineer (Fritz Fend) and produced in a German aircraft factory from 1955 to 1964. Interestingly — but not surprisingly — it has a dual-mode ignition and steering bar like you would find in an airplane.
The small car is a two-seater with a narrow body that has a low frontal area, which somehow makes room for the tandem seating. The strange alignment gives way to a body taper like an airplane fuselage while still being a practical length for the road.
Porsche Type 12 Citroen
The Porsche Type 12 was intended as a German “everyman’s automobile” project. It was designed by Ferdinand Porsche in 1931, with prototypes built a year later that featured an early example of a rounded, aerodynamic design. This was considered an important early step in design that eventually led to the creation of Volkswagen.
This odd car was supposed to be a cheap, streamlined car with all-independent suspension, no prop-shaft and a platform chassis for easy development and cheap parts. Ultimately, the project was abandoned, as none of the engines developed provided full use of the car.
Mercedes-AMG G63 6X6
This crazy SUT (sport utility truck) was originally designed for the Australian Army in 2007. At the time, it was the company’s largest and second most expensive street-legal, off-road vehicle available. It was built from 2013 to 2015 in Austria as well.
In case you were thinking it looks familiar, you probably saw one of the vehicles in the 2015 film Jurassic World or in the video game Grand Theft Auto V as the Dubsta 6×6. It also appeared in the 2014 movie Beyond the Reach, and it’s a Tier 7 reward in Forza Horizon 4 since update 11.
If you can’t get enough of the microcars and three-wheelers, then you’ll love this weird one from Trojan Cars Ltd. It’s called the Heinkel Kabine, but it was also known as the Trojan 200. The car was first produced from 1956 to 1958. The license was transferred, and more were built from 1960 to 1966.
If you want to get inside one of these, you will have to open up the front and climb in through the opening. It also had a reverse gear, unlike most other bubble cars, and a fabric sunroof that worked as an emergency escape hatch, if needed.
This one isn’t completely and utterly weird. At first, when you see it, it just looks slightly odd. But as you get to know it a bit, you realize, there’s something different about this car. For instance, the solar panels that cover the hood, trunk and roof might stand out a bit as you look closer.
The car was designed to have a 450-mile driving range from a day’s charge. The company also claims you can add an extra 30 to 40 miles range per day during the summer. This futuristic car is available for pre-order now and should be on the market in 2021.
What weird and exotic car list would be complete without some type of Lamborghini? This one is still crazy expensive, sure, but it’s not your typical fancy car for billionaires. It is known as the Lamborghini truck — an off-road vehicle made by Lamborghini from 1986 to 1993.
This model was preceded by the Cheetah and the LM001, both weird off-road trucks as well. They were originally intended as rear-mount American power plants to be used by the military, but they weren’t well-received. So, along came the LM002 — the only one to see actual production, although for a limited time.
Genuinely one of the weirdest looking cars of all time, the 1948 Tasco is a pretty interesting car with a unique history. The car was the prototype for a post-World War II American sports car. It featured aircraft-like controls and was designed by Gordon Buehrig.
This crazy-looking car was the first car in the world to have a T-top roof, giving the vehicle an odd blend of futuristic style and a retro feel all at once. Interestingly, it was the only car ever designed by Tasco, The American Sports Car Company. The single failed attempt caused the company to call it quits.
Chrysler Ghia Gilda Coupe
This unique looking car is the 1955 Ghia Gilda Coupe concept car from Chrysler. It was built for the Turin Motor show in Italy that year. The unique car was powered by an OSCA engine, giving it a whopping 140 mile-per-hour speed.
Ghia SPA gave this futuristic, “jet-powered” car the same nickname as actress, Rita Hayworth, calling it the Atomic Starlet after her famous role as Gilda. The car toured Europe but returned to the U.S. to go on display in the Henry Ford Museum. Since then, it has been featured in other museums, including The Harrah Collection.
Almost everyone has seen this weird and wacky car, the DeLorean, thanks to its claim to fame as the professor’s time-traveling car in the Back to the Future films starring Michael J. Fox. The car was designed by Giorgetto Giugiaro for the DeLorean company in 1983. The unique gull-wing doors are probably the most memorable part of the car.
The body of the car is fiberglass — an innovative notion at the time. Unfortunately, the car was widely known for its disappointing lack of power upon its introduction to the masses. Despite that flaw, the value of these cars skyrocketed after the iconic first film was released.