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The best tv cars and vehicles of the 80s

Updated on April 20, 2018

Television cars and vehicles of the 80s

When I think back to great tv programs of the 80s, the vehicle used is often one of the first things that comes to mind. Sometimes this is because the show is based around the vehicle, such as in Knightrider or Airwolf. Other times the vehicle is just there as a means of transport, yet becomes as famous as any of the human stars of the show, sometimes even more so. On this lens I have collected together some of my favourites.


KITT from Knight Rider

The Knight Industries Two Thousand, or as he is better known, KITT, was undoubtedly the star of Knight Rider. An artificially intelligent computer in the body of a 1982 Pontiac Trans Am, KITT is the car I've always wanted to own. I have the Knight Rider theme tune on a cd and sometimes play it when driving. It feels good!

The thing I love best about KITT is the flashing red light at the front with the 'wom-wom' sound effect. You just can't beat it.

Photo of KITT courtesy of Sippel2707 - wikimedia commons

Knight Rider DVDs on Amazon

Knight Rider: The Complete Series
Knight Rider: The Complete Series

All four Knight Rider series in one set. Despite looking very dated in places, this is still a quality show and KITT would still be an amazing vehicle to drive around in. David Hasselhoff's acting leaves a lot to be desired, but he does carry off the role with a certain level of charisma that could only have worked in the 80's. Definitely worth a watch.

You can also find much more Knight Rider merchandise on Amazon. One example I like is a talking model KITT.

A Team van toy
A Team van toy

The A-Team Van

I love it when a plan comes together! The A-Team van is almost as famous as the stars of the show. Considering they were on the run from the US government, this van was amazingly recognisable. Full of weaponry and Hannibal's many disguises, the A Team van raced from problem to problem, regularly having to make long jumps through the air to escape the pursuing military police. The amount of wheel spin BA cooked up every time the van set off was amazing!

Photo of A-Team van toy courtesy of Buttonfreak- wikimedia commons

The A Team DVDs on Amazon

The A-Team: The Complete Series
The A-Team: The Complete Series

All five series of the A-Team with the A-team van to keep it in. I originally bought all five series box sets separately as they came out, but I wish I'd held out until this one was available. That van shaped box looks amazing.

You can also find die-cast toy A-Team vans for sale on Amazon.


Airwolf Vs Blue Thunder

Which was your favourite 80's tv helicopter. Read the articles below and don't forget to add your opinion to the debate.


Airwolf was a high-tech military helicopter piloted by Stringfellow Hawke (Jan-Michael Vincent). Airwolf was actually a modified Bell 222 helicopter, but in the program had features such as stealth mode, supersonic speed and an incredible arsenal of weapons.

I always loved the intro music to Airwolf and currently have it as my phone's ringtone.

Blue Thunder
Blue Thunder

Blue Thunder

Blue Thunder was also a helicopter, but this time a police chopper. A modified Aerospatiale Gazelle, Blue Thunder was capable of firing 4000 rounds a minute from its attached Gatling gun, it had all sorts of camera and infra-red capabilities and was also capable of stealth mode. There were only ever 11 episodes of this series (and the one film that the series was based upon) which I find a shame as I enjoyed this one a lot.

Photo Courtesy of Cplbeaudoin - wikimedia commons

Which was your favourite helicopter tv show: Airwolf or Blue Thunder?

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Street Hawk
Street Hawk

Street Hawk

Street Hawk ran for 13 episodes back in 1985 and featured Jesse Mach, a dirt-bike racer turned crime fighter, and the bike of the title. Street Hawk was a modified Honda XR500 capable of speeds in excess of 300 mph and had some serious fire power. A very cool vehicle.

Photo Courtesy of

The General Lee
The General Lee

The Dukes of Hazzard - The General Lee

The Dukes of Hazzard may have started in the late 70s, but most of its run was during the 80s and the General Lee is just too iconic a car to miss off this list.

The General Lee was a customised 1969 Dodge Charger stock car and was often seen careering around while being chased by the local police (run by the villainous Boss Hogg).

Photo Courtesy of Erik814u2 - wikimedia commons

Magnum P.I. - Ferrari 308 GTS

If somebody mentions Magnum P.I. to you, what are the first things that come to mind? Tom Selleck's moustache and the Ferrari, right? No 80's vehicle list would be complete without a nod to this classic. Imagine driving around 1980's Hawaii, wearing a brightly coloured Hawaiian shirt at the wheel of a bright red Ferrari. Awesome!

Favourite 80s tv vehicle

Have your say on your favourite 80s tv vehicle. If your favourite isn't listed, why not mention it in the feedback form at the bottom of the lens?

Which is your favourite 80s tv vehicle?

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    • Debbi Craton profile image

      Debbi Craton 4 years ago from Georgia

      I always wanted a car like KITT that would come when called, and I liked Magnum's Ferrari, but I have to be partial to the General Lee. I'm from Georgia.