Classic Car Photos

1962 Amphicar

The Sports Car That Swims

That's right, just as the name implies, the Amphicar could be used either on the road, or as a boat.

Try to imagine the what must have been an almost magical thrill of driving your brand new car down the boat launching ramp and continuing right out onto the lake!

Between 1961 and 1968 it seems that somewhere around four-thousand* fortunate Amphicar buyers had the chance to enjoy that experience.

The fun loving little Amphicar was built in Germany, and over three-thousand were imported to the USA through 1967. Apparently, in 1967 importing the Amphicar to the USA ended, and in 1968 production also ended.

Only a convertible body style was offered. Power came from an 1147cc, 4 cylinder rear mounted engine that produced 43hp. That was enough power to cruise around the lake at up to 7 miles per hour (6 knots?), or down the highway at speeds as fast as 70mph. The exhaust port is located high up on the rear of the car, just to the right of the left side taillight.

Twin propellers moved the Amphicar through the water, while the front wheels became the rudders for steering.

A special transmission offered four forward and one reverse gear on land, but only one forward gear and reverse were used in the water.

The Amphicar is a fairly small vehicle with a wheelbase of about 82 inches and an overall length of around 170 inches.

The price ranged around $3,000.00, give or take a few hundred depending on the year. Not really inexpensive for a car this size at the time, but remember, it was a boat too!

* Production numbers vary depending on the source.

I saw and snapped the photos of this car at the annual Stockyard Days car show in New Brighton, MN in August 2000.

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Front view, 1962 Amphicar


We don't own these cars, we just saw them at car shows and snapped a few photos.

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