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Restoring the GM Futurliner
January 23, 2006 2:56 PM   Subscribe

The Futurliners are imposing vehicles, 33 feet long, 8 feet wide and standing 11 feet 7 inches tall at the top of the driver's canopy. The driver's eyes are about 10 feet off the ground and in front of the steering wheels. This site updates a 2002 post on the restoration of one of these magnificent vehicles. via Boing Boing
posted by 327.ca (35 comments total)

 
i can scarcely imagine how big my penis would be if i traded in my suburban for one of these.
posted by wakko at 3:08 PM on January 23, 2006


it looks strange without any windows. like a long firetruck without hoses.
posted by wakko at 3:10 PM on January 23, 2006


This looks like a bus with a really bad complexion.

And it has almost no windows, did they think people wouldn't want to look out the window in the future back then?
posted by fenriq at 3:11 PM on January 23, 2006


I want one. Now. Get to work.

*taps foot impatiently*
posted by brundlefly at 3:12 PM on January 23, 2006


One of these was sold at the Barret-Jackson auto auction this past weekend for 4.3 million. If you'd like, I can type that again, or you can go back and re-read it. See here.

And my question was why? I caught the auction of it through some timely channel flipping, and couldn't help but wonder a) why someone would want this (for so much money, because I can understand what's cool about it.) And more importantly B) Who the people were that were bidding. Both my wife and I observed that the bidders didn't appear to have 5 million to spend on a bus, but then appearnces can be deceiving. The whole auction would be more interesting if the bidders were popped a la Pop Up Video. Net worth and how the net worth was accumulated should be divulged.
posted by Keith Talent at 3:12 PM on January 23, 2006


fenriq, they aren't for riding in. they are for transporting world-of-the-future showcases around, then acting as the exhibition hall, when they get where they are going....
posted by nomisxid at 3:13 PM on January 23, 2006


Keith, I believe the one that sold at auction was the one featured here.
posted by killdevil at 3:23 PM on January 23, 2006


Thanks for the update. I remember that story and have wondered what happened with the project. I'd still like to have that font, too.
posted by planetkyoto at 3:25 PM on January 23, 2006


This will look great parked at the soccer field.

Actually, this really does look great. Nice find.
posted by caddis at 3:25 PM on January 23, 2006


Cup holders ! For 4.3 million, I want cup holders!
posted by R. Mutt at 3:32 PM on January 23, 2006


Fat white wall tires *snicker*
But imagine a floating MetaFilter meet, Futurlining from place to place, with mefites hopping on, then returning home to recharge their laptops after after a few hundred miles. Mathowie could drive to Vermont, then Jessamyn could drive around New England.
Wonder if they take PayPal.
posted by Cranberry at 3:38 PM on January 23, 2006


This was one of only three that still drive, if I remember correctly. Still, 4.3 mil sounds like too much to pay for any car, no matter how rare.
posted by mathowie at 3:40 PM on January 23, 2006


Somewhere, Bruce McCall is smiling.
posted by Mcable at 3:42 PM on January 23, 2006


Is it just me or did these inspire the SWAT vans from Batman: The Animated Series?
posted by keswick at 3:43 PM on January 23, 2006


Somewhere, Bruce McCall is smiling.

Yes! Bulgemobile!
posted by 327.ca at 3:44 PM on January 23, 2006


One of these was sold at the Barret-Jackson auto auction this past weekend for 4.3 million.

Not sure how Barret-Jackson got this wrong (there were several wrong hammer prices over the course of the weekend) but they said on-air yesterday that the correct price was four million even. It was bought by a museum for display.

The usual suspects were there, including Reggie Jackson, Alice Cooper and Billy Gibbons.
posted by fixedgear at 3:53 PM on January 23, 2006


Weird, because I thought it originally sold for 4.5 and was later revised down to 4.3. Regardless, the bidders didn't look like museum curators.
posted by Keith Talent at 3:59 PM on January 23, 2006


Somewhere, Bruce McCall is smiling.

That was my first thought. The second was Herkimer Battle Jitney!
posted by George_Spiggott at 4:03 PM on January 23, 2006


Regardless, the bidders didn't look like museum curators.

That's exactly what they want you to think.
posted by odinsdream at 4:12 PM on January 23, 2006


nomisxid, well, I guess it makes more sense given that. But then, wouldn't a standard semi be alot more economical?

Four million's an awful lot of money, are you sure they weren't Golden Palace? They seem to have plenty of money to throw around at auctions.
posted by fenriq at 4:13 PM on January 23, 2006


fenriq: the reason it doesn't have windows is because it has a 16-foot panel on each side that folds down. The vehicle is, essentially, a portable stage.
posted by Malor at 4:26 PM on January 23, 2006


ARGH!

The first time someone posted about this to MetaFilter, I was so thrilled, because I had memories of seeing something like them en route from Chicago to Waukegan in the late 80s. A few years ago I drove by there on a Chicago visit, just to see if it was still there -- it was not.

And this is the one that I saw.

Hooray that they restored it.

However, I am desperately sad that I did not have the foresight to acquire it then, or the money to purchase it now.

:(
posted by davejay at 4:29 PM on January 23, 2006


It was bought by a museum for display.

One of only three that still drive, and it's going to be on display? That's depressing.

Seriously, Jay Leno should have gotten hold of this, and driven it to work once and a while like he does his other cars.
posted by davejay at 4:43 PM on January 23, 2006


Are there good interior shots anywhere, actual or proposed? I can't seem to find anything on that site except the workshop photos, and one view of the driver's seat from underneath.
posted by zek at 4:52 PM on January 23, 2006


entirely cool 327.ca .
posted by Smedleyman at 5:07 PM on January 23, 2006


Wanna buy one? Only $20K, act now. Especially considering they just auctioned a restored one for $4 mill...

Here's an interior shot of sorts, Zek.
posted by arto at 7:20 PM on January 23, 2006


The Futurliner looks like something straight out of Brazil.
posted by Afroblanco at 7:30 PM on January 23, 2006


It is a sad, sad attempt to approximate the awesome majesty that is the Weinermobile.
posted by SPrintF at 7:59 PM on January 23, 2006


Argh. Afroblanco beat me to it.

*Gets annoyingly happy theme song to Brazil stuck in his head*
posted by loquacious at 8:38 PM on January 23, 2006


My last band did a cover of that song.

Bum-bum ba, bum-bum ba-ba-ba. Bum-bum ba, bum-bum ba-ba-ba.
posted by Afroblanco at 8:43 PM on January 23, 2006


George_Spiggott beat me to mentioning the resemblance to the Herkimer Battle Jitney from Mystery Men...
posted by mrbill at 9:18 PM on January 23, 2006


Take one locomotive, replace steel wheels with pneumatic tires, add steering wheel.
posted by caddis at 4:51 AM on January 24, 2006


Dammit...

"Braziiiiiiiiil....Where hearts were entertaining Juuuuuune..."
posted by alumshubby at 5:37 AM on January 24, 2006


Like the GG1, caddis?
posted by fixedgear at 9:20 AM on January 24, 2006


Like the GG1, caddis?

Whoa, that's nice. Thanks.
posted by 327.ca at 9:39 AM on January 24, 2006


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