- Bill Antonitis
Dr. Frankenstein's Dream Car
“With how many things are we on the brink of becoming acquainted, if cowardice or carelessness did not restrain our inquiries.” — Victor, from Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein
It was just Halloween, and we had some family over so our kids could do some safe trick or treating together. A treat for me was the family discussion about cars. The adults were discussing the insane prices for which we could sell our current vehicles on sites like Vroom and Carvana. None of us are planning to make any moves yet—especially our cousin. She proclaimed, “there’s no way I’m selling my 4Runner! It's my dream car!”
“Good for you,” I replied, jealously, “I haven’t found mine yet.”
It’s true. I didn't grow up loving cars. I had no Countach posters on my bedroom walls, taping up scenes from Lord of the Rings instead. So, I guess I don’t have an emotional attachment to any particular makes or models like some life-long enthusiasts. I have some definite favorite vehicles I’ve driven since “catching the disease” and delving into automotive journalism (e.g., FJ Cruiser, Camaro), but I can’t say there’s one specific car I’d buy if given the opportunity.
Instead, I thought I’d indulge in a fun thought experiment á la Dr. Frankenstein to “build” my dream car. If I could make something that suited all my driving needs and proclivities, what would it be? If I could sawzall my favorite parts off my favorite cars and weld together something completely original, adding a little duct tape and lightning to bring it to life, what would it be like? Well, here goes nothing!
Behold! My creation!
Ok, so aside from my laughable Photoshop skills, you may be wondering what was just revealed. Allow me to explain. What you see here is a Porsche 911 997 converted to a Model 3’s skateboard electric platform. It has a lift and is fitted with Goodyear Wrangler DuraTracs. A pickup bed from a Subaru BRAT has been grafted to the back.
You may be wondering another thing. Why?
You see, I chose a 997 because its represents the intersection between the simpler driving dynamics and technology Porsche carried through the 2000s (basic infotainment, hydraulic steering, still lightweight compared to more modern models).
I converted it to an EV for performance, environmentalism, and to get that pesky engine out of the back.
I lifted it and added off-road tires because safari. (DuraTracs feature my favorite mix of dirt and street performance.)
The BRAT bed is there because it's awesome. Also it adds some utility to this “sports car”. Obviously there are removable jump seats to carry more family and friends.
"Nothing contributes so much to tranquilize the mind as a steady purpose a point on which the soul may fix its intellectual eye." — Robert Walton, from Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein
I’m no car designer, but it feels pretty great to put something together, wondering what could be possible. No one would ever build a car like this (or would they?), but that’s not really the purpose. Contemplating my "dream car" gets me thinking about my favorite automotive aspects and what I love most about actually driving them: a mix of on-and off-road performance, style, and utility. What are yours? If a vehicle doesn’t yet exist that would capture it all, let us know how you’d build it—no engineering experience or mad scientist clichés required.
Bill hosts a blog and YouTube channel that lead him to think more deeply about what it means to drive. The views and opinions expressed here are his own and may not align with the founders of Everyday Driver.