What Tyres For… takes a look at fantastic situations and asks the difficult questions. Like “what tyres would you use for that?” In this inaugural entry, we take a look at Gotham’s own Batman and Batmobile tyres.
With all of the Dark Knights gadgets of justice, it can be all too easy to forget the essentials. Nowhere is this truer than with Mr Wayne’s rides. Since bursting onto TV screens in the 60’s, the Batmobile has been known for black paint and various weapons. But not for its tyres.
Well as a team of tyre fanatics we feel that this simply isn’t good enough. So we thought we’d ask the question, ‘What tyres would Batman put on the Batmobile? What are Batmobile Tyres?’
We’ve taken a look at three of the caped crusader’s most famous vehicles. Choosing the best possible match for both looks and for use. We’re assuming that the tyres were made by the same people who made the cars, but until “Wayne Tyres” start appearing on the market, we’ve made do with what we have on our shelves.
So without further delay, we’ll start with…
1966 – The Adam West Era Batmobile Tyres
The original 60’s Adam West Batmobile was a real car. Or was almost a real car anyway. The futuristic split tail design was originally the 1955 Lincon Futura concept. The Futura was eventually bought by known Hollywood car customizer George Barris. Barris paid just $1.00 for the car before it eventually became Adam West’s Batmobile in 1965.
This Batmobile was rather more sensible in its driving style than its later counterparts. Production stills show a rather standard looking, albeit tough, tyre. Modern images of the original vehicle often show the car running on a set of old school BF-Goodrich Radial T/A’s. A tyre currently not available to us at Tyres Direct. What we do have available, however, is the BF-Goodrich Long Trail T/A. This is a very similar tyre that benefits from extra off-road performance for when Batman finds himself outside of the Gotham streets.
1989 – The Tim Burton Era Batmobile Tyres
The 1989 Tim Burton Batman movies, starring Michael Keaton, offered a far more stylised affair and this change of pace wiggled its way into to the design of the new Batmobile. The rather menacing, and slightly gothic appearance of the new vehicle felt right at home with the rain-soaked streets of the endlessly dark Gotham Burton created.
What didn’t make sense about this new car, however, were the Batmobile tyres!
In a city that sees fewer dry days than a British Autumn, why would you fit motorsport style near treadless tyres!?
This just won’t do, not for Batmobile tyres. So while trying to maintain the look of the original while also adding some actual wet grip to the car, we’ve settled on the General Grabber GT. The Grabber GT’s are premium highway tyres that increase wet grip performance and are perfect for a high powered vehicle like the Batmobile.
2005 – The Christopher Nolan Era Batmobile Tyres
The “Tumbler” was introduced for Batman Begins and differs massively from the sleeker designs from earlier versions. The large and lumbering vehicle had a far more distinctively “off-road” feel to it, with its massive rear tyres with an aggressive tread.
The rear tyres didn’t take much thought before we found a match. With their aggressive tread and thick sidewall protection. The Maxxis Trepador M8060 Comp is a perfect match for those huge rear tyres, especially when they’re available in 40/13.5R17! These tyres offer incredible stability on the road while remaining incredibly manoeuvrable and we couldn’t think of a better fit for those beastly rear tyres.
The front tyres offered us a little more of a challenge. These extra wide, low tread depth tyres are unlike any commercial tyre and we don’t stock anything like it. So the closest we can get is the extra wide Continental Cross Contact UHP, available as 315/30R22 this tyre has both the width and the smaller height that the Tumbler seems to demand. All this while also offering short braking distances and high cornering stability, making it perfect for high-performance vehicles.
So there we have it. Three eras of Batmobile tyres fully fitted and ready to hit those dark streets once again! Would you have gone with something different? What do you want to see us tackle on “What Tyres For…” next? Let us know in the comments below!