Atomic batteries to power. Turbines to speed. Ready to move out, readers? It’s time to check out Batman’s garage and his impressive fleet of Batmobiles.
Chris O’Donnell once noted that “chicks dig the car,” but let’s be honest—we all think the Batmobile is something special. It doesn’t matter if you’re a car enthusiast or not, you can’t deny the appeal of Batman’s sweet ride, even if we may quibble about which one’s the best. Speaking of, we must be in a quibbling mood because we’re about to set loose one of our most sure-to-be contentious lists yet. That’s right, we’re ranking the Batmobiles! Let’s all take a stroll through Batman’s garage and see which one comes out on top.
29) The “Lost a Wheel” Batmobile
This Batmobile was featured in 1987’s Batman #408 and is similar to a few of the sports car models the Dark Knight drove throughout the decade. The vehicle is mostly remembered for its poor security system, since a street kid named Jason Todd was easily able to steal its tires. Still, this Batmobile helped introduce Batman to Jason Todd, so it can’t be that bad.
28) The Ben Affleck Batmobile
This heavily armored Batmobile was the vehicle of choice for Ben Affleck in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, Suicide Squad and Justice League. The car has almost as many features as Batman’s utility belt, including twin machine gun turrets, spiked coils, grappling hooks and a variety of other defenses.
27) The Beware the Batman Batmobile
The Dark Knight used this vehicle in the 2013 Beware the Batman animated series, and it sure came in handy! This sleek Batmobile might seem basic, but its weapons system ensured that Batman could take down a gang of criminals without ever exiting the cockpit. Like other Batmobiles, this one had a gun turret, albeit with non-lethal firepower.
26) The Batman Animated Batmobile
This Batmobile was heavily featured in The Batman, the stylish animated series from the early 2000s. Since the series takes place during the early days of the Dark Knight’s career, the car’s design and armory are simple, but it can still do its job effectively. Batman was able to program the vehicle to drive on its own, which proved beneficial during some of his more dangerous cases. The car was eventually retired after being destroyed by Gearhead in the episode “RPM.”
25) The New 52 Batmobile
This Batmobile was seen racing through the streets of Gotham throughout DC’s New 52 era. It first appeared in 2012’s Detective Comics #9 and contains some great design homages to previous Batmobiles. It’s a lowrider, like Norm Breyfogle’s Batmobile from the 1980’s, and it contains a bat-shaped ramming head like the vehicles of the Golden Age, making this car the perfect marriage of retro and modern.
24) The One Year Later Batmobile
This slick roadster debuted in Batman #652. Its basic design seems to be modeled after a Porsche, with the fins of the 1989 Tim Burton Batmobile thrown in, and a Golden Age-style bat-head for good measure. The Dark Knight used this vehicle during the “One Year Later” era of comics.
23) The First Batmobile
You can’t beat the classics! In 1941’s Detective Comics #48, history was made when Batman and Robin took to the streets in their very first Batmobile. (Previously, Batman had only driven Bruce Wayne’s town car, which wasn’t a good way to maintain a secret identity.) Unlike later Batmobiles, this one was red…which admittedly, isn’t very bat-like. This convertible had a small bat ornament on the hood, but otherwise it seemed like an ordinary car. However, it was far from normal, as the modified battering ram was powerful enough to drive through solid walls.
22) The Rebirth Batmobile
This Batmobile was first seen in 2016’s Batman #1 and remained the Dark Knight’s standard car for most of the Rebirth era. The vehicle’s long and narrow design pays homage to the Batmobile from Batman: The Animated Series, with a bat-head on the front to evoke the classic Golden Age designs. The car was modified for extra speed, which helped Batman cover more distance during time sensitive missions. This Batmobile also has a powerful ejector seat, with enough precision to help the Dark Knight reach high altitude aircraft.
21) The 1990’s Batmobile
After reclaiming the Batman mantle from Azrael, Bruce Wayne made some upgrades to his crime-fighting arsenal, including this heavily fortified Batmobile. The vehicle debuted in 1995’s Batman #526 and features gadgets, non-lethal weapons and a powerful jet turbine. This version of the Batmobile was heavily used in the 1990’s until it was destroyed during Gotham City’s devastating earthquake in the “Cataclysm” storyline.
20) The Batman & Robin Batmobile
This powerful Batmobile was driven by George Clooney in the 1997 film Batman & Robin. The vehicle measures about thirty feet long and features neon illumination throughout the interior and exterior, helping the Batmobile brighten up Gotham’s dark streets. Unlike previous cinematic Batmobiles, this one was a one-seater, which wasn’t a problem since Robin had his own Redbird cycle. This Batmobile may be bulky, but its high-powered engine ensures it could clear long distance jumps, as demonstrated when Batman pursued Mr. Freeze.
19) The Neal Adams Batmobile
When Dick Grayson left the Batcave and enrolled in Hudson University, Batman adopted a “back to basics” approach to his crimefighting career, and that included the Batmobile. The Dark Knight decided that the Batmobile needed to be less conspicuous, so he began driving a modified corvette, which allowed him to blend in. Although the Neal Adams-designed vehicle appeared ordinary, it contained a series of hidden features, such as defensive wheels, self-driving capabilities and heavy armor.
18) The Transforming Batmobile
While the Dark Knight loved his inconspicuous corvette, he decided that criminals needed something to fear, so he made some modifications to the Batmobile so it would be more recognizable. The James Bond-style sports car now had the ability to transform into a drag-racing open top Batmobile. The Dark Knight demonstrated this handy feature in 1982’s Batman #344, shocking nearby motorists.
17) The New Batman Adventures Batmobile
This Batmobile was heavily featured in the 1997 New Batman Adventures animated series and subsequent tie-ins. Its updated computer system was on par with the one in the Batcave, giving Batman’s crimefighting career more mobility. Although this Batmobile wasn’t as iconic as its Batman: The Animated Series predecessor, its heavy armor and defense system ensured that it survived for decades, remaining intact when Terry McGinnis first enters the Batcave in Batman Beyond.
16) The Brave and the Bold Batmobile
Batman: The Brave and the Bold perfectly captured the spirit of Silver Age Batman comics, and that included their Batmobile. The vehicle was a perfect visual combination of the Golden Age bat-head Batmobile and the 1966 live-action roadster. This car was also known for its surprising transformations. In some episodes it changed into a Batplane, a Batboat, a Batrocket and a large battling suit of armor. In other words, this Batmobile may appear quaint (and look a little like something out of Tron), but its hidden talents make it Batman’s greatest asset.
15) The Batman R.I.P. Batmobile
Taking the streets of Gotham by storm, this Batmobile was first seen in Batman #676. The car’s high speeds made it seem like a force of nature, and its armor plating gave it extra durability, allowing the vehicle to withstand heavy impact and still maintain its pristine appearance. This Batmobile was also armed with non-lethal mini-guns, and an electrical shock security system to prevent any street orphans from trying to remove its stylized tires.
14) The Batman Beyond Batmobile
You will believe a Batmobile can fly. The 1999 animated classic Batman Beyond brought Gotham City into the future, and that meant giving Batman’s signature car an impressive update as well. This Batmobile wasn’t limited to the road and was usually seen flying hundreds of feet in the air. The vehicle had its own camouflage system, similar to Terry’s batsuit, allowing it to stealthily pursue criminals. The interior featured a state-of-the-art computer system, which controlled the vehicle’s heavy arsenal. As if that wasn’t enough, this Batmobile was also strong enough to snag and tow multiple aircrafts after using its magnetic mounts to slow them down. Is it any wonder Terry had so much fun piloting this?
13) The Batman Forever Batmobile
When Val Kilmer suited up as the Dark Knight for the 1995 film Batman Forever, he took Gotham’s streets by storm with an updated Batmobile. The vehicle measured in at 25 feet long, and its turbo booster enabled it to reach speeds up to 329 MPH. This car is probably most remembered for a surprising feature it revealed during a dead-end chase with Two-Face. When the Batmobile was cornered in an alley, the car launched a grappling hook to the top of the building, causing the vehicle to vertically tilt. Supported by the strong grappling cable, and powered by its boosters, the Batmobile began to drive up the building’s wall, much to Two-Face’s chagrin. While this Batmobile proved useful in closed alley situations, it ultimately met its untimely end when the Riddler threw a bomb at it during his Batcave invasion.
12) The Robert Pattinson Batmobile
In 2022, Robert Pattinson suited up as the Dark Knight for Matt Reeves’ The Batman. His Batmobile looked like a smooth racer, similar to the sports cars that the Dark Knight drove in the Bronze Age. However, this vehicle was anything but retro. Its speed and durability were spotlighted during a breathtaking chase scene with Colin Farrell’s Penguin. Who can forget the sound of Batman firing it up as a sense of visual dread slowly creeps in on Oswald Cobblepot? This one didn’t even need to be seen to make our list’s top twelve.
What makes Bam so special? Well, for starters, he’s the only Batmobile on this list that is sentient. But beyond that, if you’ve ever seen an episode of the animated preschool series Batwheels, you would understand why Bam is so loveable. He has the engine of a racecar, but the heart of a hero. Bam is earnest and is always trying to do the right thing. Plus, he’s a loyal friend, which is a great quality to have in a crimefighting car.
10) The Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely Batmobile
What even is this thing? In 2009’s Batman and Robin #1, surprised Gothamites were shocked to find a flying saucer-shaped craft soaring through the night sky. This flying Batmobile was a pet project of Damian’s, who built the vehicle from unused blueprints he found among his father’s things. The craft has the ability to switch from air to ground by retracting its wings into fenders. While in the air, this Batmobile has outstanding maneuverability, which helps the craft evade attacking enemies and get through tight spots. What is this thing? It’s damn cool is what it is.
9) The Batmobile of 1950
In 1950’s Detective Comics #156, Batman heavily redesigned the Batmobile so it would be “ten years ahead of anything else on wheels.” He added a built-in crime lab, which helped him do detective work on the go in the days before there was a Batcomputer. Rocket tubes were added to the fenders for increased speed, while a radar antenna was installed to navigate dark corners. Batman bragged that it could reach speeds up to 100 mph, which was impressive for a mid-century car. This version of the Batmobile may seem dated today, but at the time of its debut, it was state-of-the-art. Plus, who doesn’t love its retro sci-fi look?
8) The Golden Age Batmobile
In 1941’s Batman #5, artist Jerry Robinson changed history when he redesigned the Batmobile. Gone were its prior roadster-like appearance and candy red coloring. This vehicle changed the game by making Batman’s car black, adding bat-fins and the iconic bat ram-head. Admittedly, this new Batmobile didn’t do so well on its first outing, crashing into a ditch during a chase with the Joker. Yet despite that setback, the vehicle endured and helped pave the way for the many Batmobiles that followed it.
7) The Tumbler
Chris Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy took Batman to new heights, so naturally a new Batmobile was needed unlike any that had ever been seen in film before. The vehicle was introduced by Lucius Fox in the movie Batman Begins, as the skilled engineer showed Bruce Wayne a prototype for a vehicle he called the Tumbler. While the car looks like a small tank, the armored vehicle is faster and more durable than it appears. Bruce Wayne saw potential in the prototype and cinematic history was made. The Tumbler comes with many special features, including a secondary electrical engine allowing the car to be quiet enough for stealth missions, dual front autocannons and a powered jet engine that assists the vehicle in jumps. The Tumbler can also eject its two front wheels to form a smaller motorcycle known as the Bat-Pod. Is it any wonder that even now, this remains one of the most popular Batmobiles ever brought to screen?
6) The Dark Knight Returns Batmobile
One of the most memorable scenes from Frank Miller’s classic The Dark Knight Returns is when Batman confronts the Mutants with his tank-like Batmobile. The large attack vehicle is one of the largest versions of the Batmobile ever imagined, and Miller’s aging Dark Knight estimates that Superman is the only living creature capable of damaging it. This theory is put to the test during the story as the Batmobile withstands bullets, explosives and other deadly attacks. The all-terrain vehicle has front facing guns, which Batman loads with rubber bullets—he swears. The interior also contains a small medical wing, something that’s essential due to Batman’s advanced age. A version of this Batmobile also made it briefly to screen near the end of Zack Snyder’s director’s cut of Justice League.
5) The Norm Breyfogle Batmobile
In 1988’s Detective Comics #592, artist Norm Breyfogle presented a new design for the Batmobile which became a consistent comics staple for the next six years. This car was less bulky than some of its predecessors and became known as the “Slim Batmobile” among the fandom. This take on the Batmobile featured an updated computer system, a parachute for abrupt breaking and an arsenal of surprises. Unfortunately, this sleek ride was destroyed by John Paul Valley during the “Knightsend” storyline but is still fondly remembered by Batmobile enthusiasts.
4) The New Look Batmobile
In the mid-’60s, a new Batmobile was debuted for Batman’s “New Look” era. Bruce Wayne proudly showed off the new ride for the first time in 1964’s Batman #164, and the Dynamic Duo soon took it to the streets. This open-top was perfect for the 1960s and underwent a few redesigns throughout the decade. The Golden Age bat ram-head was removed from the front of the car in favor of a stylized hood with a painted bat. Perhaps most noteworthy, this car served as the inspiration for the iconic 1966 Adam West Batmobile, forever cementing its place in pop culture.
3) The Batman: The Animated Series Batmobile
Who could ever forget the iconic sight of the Batmobile exiting the Batcave as Shirley Walker’s theme music plays in the background? This is how every episode of Batman: The Animated Series began, and as a result, fans young and old fell in love with this art deco take on the Batmobile. This model borrows from Tim Burton’s 1989 vehicle while giving the design a retro aesthetic, fitting with the overall look of the show. But while it looked great, it was also plenty handy in a chase. The B:TAS Batmobile was equipped with a defense system that included tire slashers on its hubs, gas dispensers and shield plating. Behind the wheel of this bad boy, Batman truly was the night.
2) The Tim Burton Batmobile
When Michael Keaton suited up as the Caped Crusader for the 1989 Batman film, he came riding one of the coolest cars around. This Batmobile was shaped less like a car, and more like a missile. That seemed fitting, since the vehicle was its own force of nature. Did you see what it did to Axis Chemicals? The Burton Batmobile was equipped with two front-facing machine guns, a protective cocoon to prevent burglaries, and a grappling hook to help the car with rapid 180 degree turns. Batmania was everywhere in 1989, and this car played a huge part in the pop culture phenomenon.
1) The Adam West 1966 Batmobile
Was there any doubt that this Batmobile would be the winner? Modeled after the “New Look” era Batmobile, this vehicle became a pop culture staple when Adam West and Burt Ward drove it in the 1966 classic Batman television series. Most Bat-fans still get chills up their spine when they hear the words, “Atomic batteries to power, turbines to speed.” It may not be able to fly, climb walls or fire ballistic missiles, but you can’t deny the emotional resonance this vehicle has among fandom. Other Batmobiles have come and gone, but this one has remained in the public consciousness and stood the test of time.
Honorable Mention: The Robinmobile
Since we spent all this time celebrating the best cars Batman has ever driven, we thought we’d give some space to Robin before he complains. While the Boy Wonder is usually relegated to the passenger seat of the Batmobile, in 1956’s Batman #101 (written by Edmond Hamilton and penciled by Sheldon Moldoff) Robin was given his very own Robinmobile. Batman was on an undercover mission, so Robin was given redesigned versions of Batman’s gear to keep up appearances. However, once the mission was over, Robin lost his vehicle and the Batmobile returned. Sorry, Boy Wonder!
Batman Day is Saturday, September 16th! Be sure to visit our Batman Day hub page for videos, news and activities to help you celebrate the Dark Knight’s big day.
Joshua Lapin-Bertone writes about TV, movies and comics for DC.com, is a regular contributor to the Couch Club and writes our monthly Batman column, "Gotham Gazette." Follow him on Twitter at @TBUJosh.
NOTE: The views and opinions expressed in this feature are solely those of Joshua Lapin-Bertone and do not necessarily reflect those of DC Entertainment or Warner Bros., nor should they be read as confirmation or denial of future DC plans.