What’s the Coolest Hyper-Specialized Vehicle?
Do you have any favorite machines in the vein of das Schnibbelmobil—the bizarre Ford station wagon with the soul of a semi-truck?
Sometimes we end up spending so much time talking about cars that it seems we've talked about all of them. When that happens, it's time to briefly sidebar to discuss unique car-adjacent vehicles that are only used for hyper-specialized purposes. One of my favorites is das Schnibbelmobil, a mid-engine semi-truck fused with a Ford station wagon.
My colleague James Gilboy shared this magnificent machine with all of us back in 2020, and he mentioned it again today when I prompted my colleagues to think about wacky purpose-built motor-powered things.
"Alternatively known as the Cologne Crocodile, the Schnibbelmobil was constructed in the early 1980s by German heavy vehicle specialists Colonia Gmbh at the behest of VAW Aluminum," Gilboy reported. As you might guess from the photo or remember from the story, it was conceptually just a semi-truck tractor but made super low so you could move extremely long pieces of cargo on a trailer it was towing. It's so bizarre-looking and brain-breaking, I love it.
With that fun vehicular memory stirred up, I'll ask you as well. What do you think is the coolest hyper-specialized vehicle?