Iconic ‘Star Wars’ Vehicles & Their Modern Equivalents
Our Favorite Star Wars Rides Get Matched Up with the Best of Transportation Today
With all this wild talk and excitement about the revival of the Star Wars franchise, we got to talking about what cars would become which Star Wars vehicles in a future that is somehow simultaneously a long, long time ago. We talked about design of the machines, their purpose in the universe, their performance, overall style and more. In the end it just led to a lot of yelling, so we decided that it would be put best to down our choices into the annals of the Internet so that nobody could argue with us.
What follows is a look at some of the most iconic cars of today and some of the most iconic Star Wars vehicles and how they could be related. If any of these feel forced, we apologize. Blame Jar Jar Binks.
Mercedes S-Class to Naboo Royal Starship
When you are part of the royal family that dominates and entire planet, only the finest transportation will do. That is why the Naboo Royalty will use the 900,000-th generation of the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. With its soft profile, luxury styling and silver-chrome paint, the Naboo Royal Starship is a spitting image of something that Mercedes could create a million years in the future, or in the past? Star Wars timelines are confusing.
Regardless, can you imagine anything more befitting the future mother of Luke Skywalker than the finest flying S-Class? As a bonus, Natalie Portman, the actress who played Queen Amidala of Naboo, has an actual S-Class of her own. She also has a Prius, but we can just gloss over that.
Porsche 911 to an A-Wing
Porsche has built an empire on taking one good idea and endlessly refining it. The 911 is a simple idea that has been worked on, altered and adjusted to make it ever faster and more reliable. In the future, the closest representation of this idea would be the A-Wing. The A-Wing started life as a humble machine before the Galactic Civil War, and more than 30 years later during the events of the original Star Wars trilogy, the A-Wing is still present. Just as the 911 was discovered to be a powerful platform for motorsports, especially in the grassroots segment, the A-Wing became one of the go-to starships for the Alliance.
Fast and compact, it makes great work whether on a planet’s surface or out in the expanse of space — just like a Porsche 911 is great on the highway or on a racetrack. As an extra little nod to the 911, the A-wing also has that pointy nose and hunched profile, and its power comes from the back.
Miata to X-Wing
When it comes to any question in the automotive space, they say the answer is always Miata. Want a fun weekend car? Get a Miata. Want a reliable sports car that won’t break the bank? Get a Miata. Want to start a career in racing? Want to learn the finer art of car control? Want to feel the finest manual transmission in the biz? Get a Miata. It’s cheap, easy to maintain, infinitely modifiable, and in capable hands it will outperform almost everything on the market.
That is why we think it is the perfect extension of what will become the future X-Wing fighter. The X-Wing just seems to be the jack-of-all-trades machine that is capable of doing any task. It’s fast, can outmaneuver almost anything on the battlefield, and based on its ubiquitous presence in the Alliance fleet, it has to be cheap. Plus you get to see all kinds of variants on modified versions as well. In short, when the Alliance needs to get anything done, the answer is always the X-Wing.
Sure, the X-Wing isn’t a roadster, but that kind of open-top luxury doesn’t work well in the vacuum of space. Let’s not get crazy here, guys.
McLaren P1 to Storm IV Twin-Pod Cloud Car
McLaren makes special cars for particular people. They chase performance above almost any other metric. Their cars are organically styled but never exactly pretty, and there is a strong history of oddly-positioned seating arrangements thanks to the record-setting F1. They also tend to have odd names with machines, like the MP4-12C. In a space-faring world, we think the closest approximation would be the Storm IV Twin-Pod, also known as the Cloud Car. This strange dual-pod machine fills the McLaren need for an overly-complicated name and awkward seating arrangement. It also puts its power out through the rear, with a motor situated in the middle.
The Cloud Car is produced by Bespin Motors, the bespoke manufacture of the planet Bespin. Bespin is that cloudy, giant one, and that makes it a great interpretation of the constantly foggy and cloudy Britain. They even have similar word shapes with almost rhyming names. Also, the Cloud Car is painted orange, and there is no better reason why that makes it the future of McLaren.
Lamborghini Aventador SV to Snowspeeder
When it comes to cars with the sharpest and most angular designs in the business, it has to be Lamborghini. For more than 30 years now, the Italian company has been making angry wedges that would look at home on the road, or in a flying squadron of stealth planes. That is why we think Lamborghini will go on to produce the Snowspeeder that served such an important role in the Battle of Hoth. Let’s start with the look. We wouldn’t be surprised if George Lucas saw early drafts of the Countach when the Snowspeeder was being drawn up in concept art. The same shape, same sharp edges, same random wings and outcroppings.
Of course, the Lamborghinis of past were unruly, hard to handle and generally less than reliable. To find the true precursor to the Snowspeeder, we need to look at the current Lamborghini Aventador SV. Still angular, still aggressive and still fast, but now it has German reliability, and most importantly AWD. You wouldn’t take an old RWD Lambo out in the snow, so it would have been terrible on Hoth. With AWD and a good set of snow tires though, you could wrap cables around AT-AT walkers all day long.
Corvette to Land Speeder
Just as the Corvette lives on today as America’s benchmark for creating the attainable sports car, the Landspeeder in Star Wars serves the same purpose. Fast, nimble and affordable. Like the Corvette of today, there are older and more affordable models available to younger enthusiasts. Luke’s personal X-34 Landspeeder would be a perfect example. It’s a nice convertible version that needs a little love and attention, but it manages to provide the performance you would expect. Landspeeders, in all their variations, are the ubiquitous machines that provide speed and handling across the universe of Star Wars. It’s the perfect example of how a brand like Corvette can survive hundreds of years into the future.
Chopper to Speeder Bike
It is not exactly a stretch to see how the Speeder Bikes of the Star Wars universe were inspired by and are a logical extension of the chopper craze. They are fast, small and look cool as hell. What started as a modding craze here in the States has grown into a full-blown mode of transportation in the future. Don’t let all the critics and haters get you down. Hack that Harley, make that new frame, create the coolest and most interesting thing you have ever seen. If you look closely, the Speeder Bikes even have big-angled handles. We wouldn’t quite call them ape-hangars thanks to how low they sit, but the profile matches.
The next time someone wants to comment on how ridiculous your bike looks, just remember that in the future, all the cool bikes will look like this. We aren’t crazy, we are visionaries.
Lexus LX to Sand Crawler
When you need the biggest and most capable machine to get you from point A to point B, you choose the Lexus LX. Based off the Landcruiser, the LX is an unstoppable off-road machine, and it’s so reliable that we’re surprised Lexus hasn’t recalled the first-generation models just to make people buy a new car already. That is why, when the future from a long, long time ago finally rolls around, you’ll find the modern interpretation of the LX sitting on Tatooine. Sadly it will be beaten up and filled with garbage.
We’re talking about the Sandcrawlers that the Jawas are so fond of. It makes sense. Incredible off-road prowess for trekking through the sand, massive size and towing ability for moving around all those spare robots, and a drivetrain so reliable, you won’t ever worry about making it across the desert to your next trading port. We just wish those Jawas would wash it every once in a while. It’s still a Lexus, show it some respect.
Text and graphics by Christian Moe for CarBlog.