With Matt Reeves Batman film set to hit theaters June 25th, 2021 we’re going to get a new iteration of the Batmobile. Aside from the Batsuit and Batarang, the Batmobile is the most iconic and recognizable part of Batman’s arsenal. Fans have been treated to numerous incarnations of the Batmobile on screen, and countless versions across comics, video games, and television. With more recent on-screen renditions and even the version in the hit video game Batman: Arkham Knight resembling a tank imitating a car, I’d like the next Batmobile to be designed closer to a sleek and stealthy supercar.
Fans were first introduced to the tank Batmobile style way back in 1986 with Frank Miller’s iconic graphic novel The Dark Knight Returns. Here we see an absolutely gargantuan vehicle that is essentially a tank on steroids. While it’s still called the Batmobile, this version only resembles the vehicle in name. The next major appearance of the tank Batmobile is in the blockbuster that changed the comic book film landscape, The Dark Knight. Known as the “Tumbler”, this version of the Batmobile was designed in-universe as being a military breaching vehicle, making it fit firmly in the tank category. This design is a practical application of the tank idea, with the crew building multiple Batmobiles that are able to pull off all of the stunts they wanted it to.
The design of the Tumbler is a mixture of a Lamborghini and a tank, with the tank taking up more of the design. The vehicle has a lot of weight behind it and immediately catches your eye on-screen. The next bigtime appearance of the tank design is seen in the closing chapter of Rocksteady’s Arkham trilogy, Batman: Arkham Knight. This Batmobile is somehow simultaneously sleeker and larger than the Tumbler. With this vehicle even capable of transforming into a fully-fledged “battle-mode” to dispatch enemy tanks. The Batmobile in Arkham Knight takes the elements of the tank Batmobile and stylizes it while putting more utility into it. It’s also more practical to pull off considering they didn’t have to make a real-life working version of it.
And finally, the latest incarnation of the tank Batmobile can be seen in 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, directed by Zack Snyder. This is the least tank-like of all the Batmobiles I’ve mentioned thus far, but it is still definitely closer to a tank on wheels than a car. It’s also the sleekest version of the tank design and works exceptionally well practically. Between all of these Batmobiles, I think creators have achieved as much as possible with the idea of creating a tank-like Batmobile. Each of these vehicles hits a different spectrum of the tank idea and pulls it off in a unique way that’s very fitting for each. With that said I don’t think it’s possible to up the ante further with the tank design. I can’t imagine a better looking sleek tank than what we saw in Batman v Superman or a better looking military vehicle than what we saw in The Dark Knight.
With all of that in mind, I’m desperate to see the next version of the Batmobile more closely resemble a modern supercar decked out with all the latest tech. There are an almost limitless amount of Batmobile designs from the comics and even previous films and television that can be used as inspiration. Having the Batmobile be more of a car will also help this version stand on its own even more. It would help add to the mystique and aura of this Batman to have his car be essentially a silent predator gliding through the night, taking stealth mode to the next level.
I would love to see a longer Batmobile again, with some inspiration from the ’89 film and Batman: The Animated Series. The long front is such an iconic look for the Batmobile and adds to its overall presence. Even if they don’t go for a longer front end, having the Batmobile look like a supercar that’s been completely customized to fit Batman would be great to see. If they’re able to find some way to incorporate the shape of a bat’s head into the front of the car, reminiscent of early Batmobile designs, I would lose my mind. It’s something that I think could be done subtly enough, but would be another thing that adds to the presence and complete look of the car.
In the end, the Batmobile is one of the most iconic pieces of imagery in the entire Batman mythos, and the fact that we get to see a brand new design for one under the guidance of Matt Reeves has me incredibly excited. So far everything Reeves has said about the film has put a major emphasis on being comic accurate, so I can only hope that Reeves continues this trend and follows the comics tendency to have the legendary ride be more akin to a tricked out supercar than a tank. Either way, a new Batmobile will be upon us soon and I can’t wait to see what the design direction will be.
What do you want out of the next Batmobile? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter and Instagram!