Commute, Toy or Destroy – DeLorean Time Machine, General Lee, KITT

Mike Schlee
by Mike Schlee

We are back with this week’s installment of AutoGuide’s newest, interactive weekly feature ‘Commute, Toy or Destroy’. But this week it’s different… very different.

Once again, we present to you, our faithful readers, a choice of three vehicles. We are asking you to decide which one you would make your star car, which one would be a re-occurring character, and which one should be regulated to B-Movie Status (if it’s not already there).

Remember, that commuter car you must live with every day, all year round. The toy would be only available to you for occasional use on weekends, and the final car would miss-time a jump and slam into the canyon wall.

This week we select three vehicles that are Hollywood icons. First there is KITT, the car that David Hasselhoff made famous (or was it the other way around?) Second, there is the General Lee, a car that was jumping construction zones and drifting around dirt roads long before drifting was a ‘thing’. Finally, there is the car that could travel through time, assuming it hit 88 mph. Yes, the DeLorean Time Machine from Back to the Future. Three great choices, three tough choices; what are yours going to be?

General Lee

This 1969 Dodge Charger was named after a General from the Civil war, Robert E. Lee, and starred in the cult classic The Dukes of Hazzard. The General Lee is instantly recognizable with its bright orange paint job, Confederate flag on the roof, giant ‘01’s on each door, front push-bar and horn that would play the song Dixie. Since the story is that this car was a former NASCAR racer, the doors were welded shut which meant entry and exit could only be done through the windows. What child of the 1980s didn’t try to do this in their parent’s car?


KITT, which originally stood for Knight Industries Two Thousand, was the name applied to a 1982 Pontiac Firebird that was the Chuck Norris of automobiles. Controlled by a supercomputer, KITT had it all; Rocket boosters, oil slicks, grappling hooks, laser packs, microwave scramblers, you name it. Forget the Ford sponsored remake of the show, we are talking about the original Knight Rider. If it ain’t got the Hoff, it ain’t the real thing. The most identifiable feature of KITT had to be the red LED strip on the front bumper of the Trans Am that has for ever since had owners of black ‘80s era Trans Ams slapping them on the front of their cars.

DeLorean Time Machine

Ok, so maybe this vehicle doesn’t have a catchy name like the other two, but the word DeLorean is more synonymous with the Back to the Future franchise than the failed automaker itself. If this car didn’t star in the movies, would we care anymore about it than Bricklin? This DeLorean needed to reach 88 mph to activate the Flux Capacitor which allowed for time travel. Like a viral You Tube video, 88 mph and Flux Capacitor have forever been ingrained in pop culture and are referenced often. Just think of all the places you could go with this car.

Mike Schlee
Mike Schlee

A 20+ year industry veteran, Mike rejoins the AutoGuide team as the Managing Editor. He started his career at a young age working at dealerships, car rentals, and used car advertisers. He then found his true passion, automotive writing. After contributing to multiple websites for several years, he spent the next six years working at the head office of an automotive OEM, before returning back to the field he loves. He is a member of the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC), and Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA). He's the recipient of a feature writing of the year award and multiple video of the year awards.

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