Knight Rider – K.I.T.T. Replicas
The steering wheel (gullwing)
KITT’s steering wheel (or “Gullwing”) is the first thing that catches the eye among replica posts because it is missing.
Some users have a basic knowledge of traffic law and know that it is forbidden to drive in Germany and Switzerland.
Basically, for people who want to get as close to the original as possible, initially stupid.
The reason, however, is not that injuries could occur in the event of an accident, but the simple reason that in Germany and Switzerland all steering wheels should be round.
As many can imagine, driving around with a steering wheel like this is of course allowed in the USA.
This comes from the simple guidelines that exist there for steering wheels. These are simply just a simple diameter specification that is met by the gullwing.
It is still not recommended to use it.
When it comes to KITT’s scanner, the most frequently asked question is how it can be allowed to drive it in traffic.
Basically, the answer here is very simple.
In German road law, it does not matter whether you install such a scanner unit in the front as long as it does not reflect red in the dark.
Since the construction of this part is relatively simple (a bar with 8 rooms for the lamps, red Plexiglas pane in front of it, finished), the race management can be satisfied with a black Plexiglas pane that is placed in front of the red one.
Another regulation for this is that the scanner must not be able to be activated while driving.
It used to be said that the control unit should simply be connected to the handbrake for this. If this is solved, the scanner should not be able to be activated.
Or as it is called in the scene – the dashboard.
To first answer the most important question. Yes, that much blinking is actually allowed. And yes (almost) all of it really works.
However, there are also a lot of dummies in the picture above. You can’t just assign a function to every advertisement.
But now to the most important part for many …
Now think about what it costs!
And all I can say is … it’s so expensive.
The Knight Rider-specific parts are probably the cheapest.
KITT was a third generation Pontiac Firebird Trans Am as you may know.
This third generation has seen an infinite number of design changes during the period of its production (between 1982 and 1992).
There were also a number of
things that could be ordered …
The important thing here is: KITT is based on one of the first Trans Ams of its time.
However, a KITT can be built from any vehicle between 1982 and 1992.
You can now surely imagine that there are only a few that
have all the attachments that the car had in the series.
Parts worth mentioning are here:
– the so-called Cowl Induction Hood
– the Turbo Cast Rims and the associated Bowling Ball Hubcaps
– the 1982 center console including Round Shifter
– the 1982 rear bumper
These 4 parts are some of the rarest that can now be found on the market. For rims and hubcaps, you can easily calculate 2000 euros
if you are unlucky.
The same applies to the bonnet.
Of course, you can get lucky every now and then and find cheap offers, but even then, they are mostly from the USA and of
course something can go wrong with the transport.
There is also the factor of age.
Some of the vehicles are now over 30 years old and often have their best days behind them. Wear parts that have to be replaced,
engine problems, etc. are part of everyday life here. In addition, there are consumption and maintenance costs.
During the time that I have been active in the scene, I have not only seen one person who grossly misjudged the effort involved in this hobby and sold the car unfinished.
It’s not a “luxury gimmick” as I often hear. It’s just a hobby. Nobody has to build a 99.9% accurate KITT.
For many, the front apron and scanner are enough and they have fulfilled their childhood dream. Sometimes it just escalates …
So much for that.
If you have any questions, feel free to ask them in the comments.
I will either answer them there directly or, if enough come together, there will be a second part.
I will also put in a few useful and
interesting links in the comments for those who are interested.