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Specs For the New KITT

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the a-shadowy-flight-into-the-dangerous-world dept.

195

An anonymous reader writes "The upcoming made-for-TV Knight Rider movie features an all-new version of the Knight Industries Two Thousand (KITT). Popular Mechanics has the 'specs' for the original Hasslehoff-mobile, as well as for the digital-effects enhanced version in the 2008 production. 'Designer Harald Belker, who has created the Batmobile for Batman and Robin and a next-gen space shuttle for Armageddon, came onboard to give the new KITT. a unique look. "The goal was to make it look more aggressive without being hokey or garish," Belker says.'"

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Hasslehoff (1)

mastershake_phd (1050150) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788802)

But has Hasslehoff signed on?

Re:Hasslehoff (4, Funny)

snl2587 (1177409) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788916)

Only if the glove compartment is replaced with an open bar.

Re:Hasslehoff (2, Insightful)

ROMRIX (912502) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789010)

But has Hasslehoff signed on?
Yes for a guest shot.

But this is just another NBC anti-war propaganda show. Never mind the car, the new "Hoff" is going to be a "Jaded" Iraq war Army Ranger Who lost his entire battalion in Iraq. Funny, I never heard anything on the news about an entire battalion being lost in Iraq at any time during this war. I guess NBC has high hopes eh?

Re:Hasslehoff (1)

hitmark (640295) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789124)

that kind of news would not be good for the moral back home, so well...

Re:Hasslehoff (1)

Phroggy (441) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789434)

that kind of news would not be good for the moral back home, so well...
Who cares? It'd be great for ratings, and that means ad revenue! The point was, it hasn't happened.

Re:Hasslehoff (1)

jas79 (196511) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790200)

Talking cars aren't real either.

Unoriginal made-for-TV movies... (1)

Shag (3737) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788812)

I'm a little confused. Do those fall under "news for nerds," or "stuff that matters?"

Re:Unoriginal made-for-TV movies... (2, Insightful)

Rei (128717) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788854)

I agree. Especially given that we just had a slashdot article on a car that actually matters (the Aptera [popularmechanics.com] ). Who cares about Knight Rider?

Re:Unoriginal made-for-TV movies... (3, Funny)

darkhitman (939662) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788926)

Actually, it falls under ",".

Re:Unoriginal made-for-TV movies... (1)

jacquesm (154384) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789142)

Neither. But one thing did strike me. As a run of the mill and fairly low budget (by American standards) series Knight rider had an interesting component that is often overlooked. The interface with KITT was exclusively voice and nobody thought twice about it being 'realistic'. And here we are more than two decades later and we still don't have voice recognition or natural language processing that even comes close to what is displayed so off-handedly in the series. I often wonder what kind of peaceful results could be achieved with the kind of budgets that are thrown around in useless wars. Free college education for everybody ? Free healthcare ? Universal voice recognition ? AI ? an AIDS vaccine ? None of those seem too farfetched if you consider the normal research budgets for those subjects.

Re:Unoriginal made-for-TV movies... (2, Insightful)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789218)

The interface with KITT was exclusively voice and nobody thought twice about it being 'realistic'.
So? They had talking computers in Star Trek before that.

And here we are more than two decades later and we still don't have voice recognition or natural language processing that even comes close to what is displayed so off-handedly in the series.
Possibly because it's not the universal man/machine interface panacea that the uneducated think it is.

I'm confused? (3, Funny)

edwardpickman (965122) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788816)

What's hokey about a male model and a talking car that fight crime?

Re:I'm confused? (1)

Mipoti Gusundar (1028156) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789474)

I have 1 doubt about this word "hokey". Is it meaning "totaly the very gayest thing"?

Manly Cars and the men who drive them (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21788824)

> "The goal was to make it look more aggressive without being hokey or garish," Belker says

Just give the car a penis and be done with it.

Science Fiction vs outright fantasy (5, Insightful)

stox (131684) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788834)

300MPH to 0 in 12 feet? Sure, let's calculate the G's from that. Somehow I missed the specs for the inertial dampeners. What really peeves me is that this is Science Fiction that is too lazy to try to conform to the realm of possibility rather than exceed those limits to make a really good story.

Assuming constant acceleration (4, Informative)

aepervius (535155) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788994)

Assuming constant acceleration A, speed increasing linearly A.t (speed=0 at t=0), meaning it reaches a distance X=A.t^2 (t=0 then x=0) transforming mile into furlong (sorry I meant meter) means at 12 foot it has roughly 4 meters, and a speed of roughly 300*1.6=480 km-1. Now I don't want to make complex calculation, so I will assume it will have over the 12 foot an average speed of (480+0)/2=240 km.h-1. Which is 130 meter.second -1 (we go for rough estimate). It will so take it roughly 0.03 second to make that distance of 4m with an average speed of 130 m.s-1. Since we know that X=4meter=A.T^2 and t=0.03 we get A=x/t^2=4225 meter.s-2. For reference g=9 m.s-2 so he will feel a force of 470 g roughly. Naturally I bet there are some errors in the above particularly how I calculate the time it takes.

Re:Assuming constant acceleration (5, Informative)

Fuji Kitakyusho (847520) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789054)

300 miles / hour x 5280 ft / mile x hour / 3600 s = 440 ft / s a=(Vf^2-Vi^2)/2d a=(0^2-440^2)/(2*12) a=8066.67 ft/s^2 standard gravity = 32.174 ft/s^2 therefore, 8066.67 / 32.174 =~ 250 g. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the highest g-force endured was 82.6g for 0.04 seconds on a water-braked rocket sled by Eli L. Beeding, Jr., at Holloman Air Force Base on May 16, 1958. He was hospitalized for three days. Using that number, this still means that the new KITT is capable of stopping three times faster than the maximum rate within survivability limits supported by evidence.

Re:Assuming constant acceleration (2, Funny)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789576)

The key is that KITT uses a self-directed tachyon beam which is powerful enough to induce locally a Lie dragging of the metric. In layman's terms, the car takes really thirty seconds to slow down, but the light from the red cylon eye thingy makes it so that time flows backwards to four seconds afterwards, while the car's incessant talk distracts the driver when it happens.

Re:Assuming constant acceleration (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789670)

Hey, KITT can drive without a pilot onboard. Maybe he is using the braking-by-driving-in-a-virtual-wall maneuver just in those situations?

Re:Assuming constant acceleration (1)

ArAgost (853804) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790316)

But it is stated nowhere that the driver has to survive it. Heck, that car can drive by itself!

Re:Assuming constant acceleration (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21790318)

You forget that KITT can drive itself and so is not constrained to stay within your pathetic human g-force limitations.

OOps forogt a factor 2 (1)

aepervius (535155) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789088)

That make it a factor 4 error on the accelration A calculation. (I had taken 480 kmh as average speed instead of 240). Don't really matter. Red-meat-mash ex-driver is still dead as dead can be. even at 125g. This is why I hate tv-sf.

Re:OOps forogt a factor 2 (3, Informative)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789116)

Red-meat-mash ex-driver is still dead as dead can be. even at 125g

I was going to debunk you by quoting John Stapp [wikipedia.org] but found what I wanted at David Purley [wikipedia.org]

He survived 179 gravities.

Re:OOps forogt a factor 2 (1)

ShadowBlasko (597519) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789446)

At least with shows like StreetHawk and Automan the driver/occupant got banged up a little bit in those hi-g moves.

Then again, in Automan, I always just expected somewhere deep in my twisted childhood psyche to see the door open on some soup pour out on the group.

"Otto! What did you do?!"

Re:Assuming constant acceleration (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789136)

Why you gotta make everything so complicated?

Assuming constant deceleration, you'd average 150 mph over the 12 feet. Do the calculation [google.com] : 250 g.

Another way to think about it: if you were to run that car into a solid wall at 300mph, the front might crumple 6 feet. Going from 300mph to 0 in 12 feet is about half as severe as just driving into a wall.

Or a little worse than driving straight into a wall at 200mph. Whee.

Re:Assuming constant acceleration (1)

cerberusss (660701) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789278)

For the upcoming show, the wanna-be actors have to act out a scene that's invented on the spot by the producer. When they pass this test, they undergo the second test: a nice slap in the face with a sledgehammer. To emulate KITTs acceleration.

SAVTU Equations (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790538)

You don't need to work out the time. You just need the right SAVTU equation. What's SAVTU, you ask? Well, read on.

For any constant acceleration problem, one can calculate all of the following values if three of them are known:
S=distance (or displacement)
A=acceleration
V=final velocity
T=time
U=initial velocity

S: V=U+(A*T)/2
A: S=((U+V)/2)*T
V: S=U*T+(A*T^2)/2
T: V^2=U^2+2*A*S
U: S=V*T-(A*T^2)/2

Each equation is listed by which variable it does not use. So, for the KITT problem, we know V. We know U. We know S, and we are trying to calculate A. We don't know T, so we use the T equation: V^2=U^2+2*A*S. (The actual math is left as an exercise for the reader).

Re:Science Fiction vs outright fantasy (0, Troll)

xENoLocO (773565) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789000)

Someone has penis envy.

Just because the new KITT is that much faster, doesnt mean you gotta go and get all jealous and shit.

It's possible - using a very thick concrete wall.. (1)

cheros (223479) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789196)

Nothing in the specs states anything about driver protection, so I guess it'll simply involve an endless string of cloned Knightriders :-)

I was hoping anyone with better physics knowledge than I would be able to calculate the impact energy. To take almost 2 tonnes of steel down from 300 mph to 0 in about 12 feet (apparently calculated as a deceleration of about 250g) means you have to get rid of a godawful amount of kinetic energy in a very short time. Hell, that's not even going to look good on FILM.. Well, OK, once :-).

Re:Science Fiction vs outright fantasy (1)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789240)

"Power output can't be measured in Attack mode."

Sigh.

Re:Science Fiction vs outright fantasy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789440)

Who cares?

The original Knight Rider was a show for kids. So let's not calculate the G's (sic) from whatever they do on a kid's show.

What'll you do for an encore? Deconstruct Gilligan's Island? Go back to your basement, Poindexter.

Re:Science Fiction vs outright fantasy (1)

192939495969798999 (58312) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789566)

Plus, all wheel drive is for girls! Why would anyone have anything but a rear-wheel drive mustang...makes no sense.

Re:Science Fiction vs outright fantasy (1)

darkmeridian (119044) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789852)

Dude. It's KITT! Why do you think that there has to be someone in the car? As long as the car won't fly apart at these G rates perhaps it makes sense!

Fantasy (1)

GreatDrok (684119) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788840)

Clearly a fantasy story because anyone really wanting to design a powerful fast car and put a supercomputer with AI in wouldn't be using a Mustang. Heck, I would go with something like the Mazda RX8. It at least looks sporty and in some ways quite similar to the original KITT. Of course, it isn't American so I'll no doubt get modded down by y'all.....

Re:Fantasy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789012)

Why does it have to be a new car at all? The reason it is a Mustang and not a Mazda probably has something to do with ...money?

Re:Fantasy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789114)

Isn't Mazda somewhat owned by Ford? Clearly Ford would have a say in that case, and they'd choose the Mustang for marketing reasons.

That Car... (1, Insightful)

MorderVonAllem (931645) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788852)

...doesn't fit. When I see that I don't see KITT and that should be what I see immediately. Looks pretty ugly...

Re:That Car... (1)

Fizzl (209397) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789160)

Yeah. Definitely Hokey.
It looks like a butcher job pimp-my-ride ricer toyota.

Re:That Car... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21790070)

It sure is ugly. There were some rumors earlier this year that Konigsegg would be the new KITT, and looking at some fan art [menoum.com] it looks much better. Too bad the car had to be American.

Lack of elegance (2, Insightful)

CarpetShark (865376) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790108)

They seem to misunderstand what KITT was. KITT was sleek, and elegant. It had class. And it was something we all imagined we might have some day. Until the producers get what the old show had, they should stop trying to reproduce it with horrible bulky cars.

Impossible Tech (4, Insightful)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788860)

this virtual Stang comes tricked out with a supercomputer that can hack almost any system; a very capable weapons system; and a body--thanks to nanotechnology--that's able to shape-shift and change color at will.

For the love of all things Holy, can we please stop making shows with impossible (or at least highly improbable) technology? KITT was really fun in the 80's, primarily because of a misconception about AI. It was felt at the time by the public (and to a lesser degree by actual AI researchers) that the only thing holding a computer back from sentience was enough computing power. 20+ years of research has since disavowed us of that notion.

Otherwise the original show was reasonably good about keeping the tech on the level. KITT was powered by Gas Turbines (good!), had laser weaponry (okay), was capable of computer graphics (actually, that's almost amusingly primitive at this point), and had an ultra-strong "Molecular Bonded Shell". (Unlikely, but at least within the realm of possibility.)

The show tried doing the "ridiculous tech-thing of the week" when they brought on the April character, but that didn't go over all that well. Eventually they dropped it and got back to showing solutions that didn't involve Deus-Ex Machina plot devices.

While I understand the need for suspending disbelieve, I just can't help but think that it would make a more enjoyable show if they simply tried to ground and enhance what was already presented in the original show. Updated with modern communications technology, satellite data, reconnaissance methods (could you see KITT launching UAVs? :P), eves dropping tech, weapons technology, and computer control, KITT could be pretty damn cool without crossing the line into unbelievable territory. Which would, of course, force the writers to write rather than relying on the gadget of the moment. ;-)

Re:Impossible Tech (1)

imsabbel (611519) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788998)

You know that a "molecular bonded shell" IS nanotech, right?

Re:Impossible Tech (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789018)

For the love of all things Holy, can we please stop making shows with impossible

Since most computers these days are eminently hackable internet connected windows boxes, I reckon the can hack almost any system bit is feasible.

Certainly more so than it was 20 years ago.

Impossible Mileage. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789106)

"While I understand the need for suspending disbelieve, I just can't help but think that it would make a more enjoyable show if they simply tried to ground and enhance what was already presented in the original show. Updated with modern communications technology, satellite data, reconnaissance methods (could you see KITT launching UAVs? :P), eves dropping tech, weapons technology, and computer control, KITT could be pretty damn cool without crossing the line into unbelievable territory. Which would, of course, force the writers to write rather than relying on the gadget of the moment. ;-)"

Well the modern car could have been a hybrid. Save the environment AND catch bad guys.

Re:Impossible Tech (1)

JoeUmitsubame (635028) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789190)

Updated with modern communications technology, satellite data, reconnaissance methods (could you see KITT launching UAVs?

Back in the '90s there was a show called Viper, which featured a Dodge that could shapeshift from its standard mode to an armored "Defender" mode (via magic nanotech; even the tires got bigger), included various hidden weapons, and it even had a UAV. The car didn't have an AI or anything like that, though. It's sort of amusing to me that Viper -- a show probably inspired by the original Knight Rider (down to the guy with no memory of his past becoming the driver)-- may itself be inspiring aspects of the new Knight Rider. Sort of.

I would also like to see something with some more grounded technology. I'm sort of surprised such fantastic shows do as well as they do. The whole magical "reconfigure the main deflector dish" style solutions are starting to get a bit old.

If you search YouTube for "Viper TV" you can find various video clips showing the transformation, weapons and the UAV.

-- Joe

Re:Impossible Tech (1)

zakezuke (229119) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789248)

While I understand the need for suspending disbelieve, I just can't help but think that it would make a more enjoyable show if they simply tried to ground and enhance what was already presented in the original show. Updated with modern communications technology, satellite data, reconnaissance methods (could you see KITT launching UAVs? :P), eves dropping tech, weapons technology, and computer control, KITT could be pretty damn cool without crossing the line into unbelievable territory. Which would, of course, force the writers to write rather than relying on the gadget of the moment. ;-)
I think they tried that... Team Knight Rider [wikipedia.org] perhaps. I only watched a couple of episodes but I seem to remember automobiles that could morph into cycles or some nonsense. It only lasted a season.

Re:Impossible Tech (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789292)

KITT launching a UAV? Perhaps you're forgetting the season four episode "Hills of Fire", where KITT got a new buddy called SID (Satellite Infiltration Drone) who could fly around and spy on baddies while disguised as a soccer ball. Yet another vaguely accurate prediction of the future by Knight Rider.

Re:Impossible Tech (1)

brunes69 (86786) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789944)

Otherwise the original show was reasonably good about keeping the tech on the level. KITT was powered by Gas Turbines (good!), had laser weaponry (okay), was capable of computer graphics (actually, that's almost amusingly primitive at this point), and had an ultra-strong "Molecular Bonded Shell". (Unlikely, but at least within the realm of possibility.)

Yeah - it was especially believable how KITT could control other cars and electronics by sending commands to them through the ether.

Re:Impossible Tech (1)

thefuz (1076605) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790046)

In response to AKAImBatman's "Updated with modern communications technology, satellite data, reconnaissance methods (could you see KITT launching UAVs? :P),..."

It does... "Mini-KITT Reconnaissance Drone".

Whupdido. Now I can safely Tivo this.

Viper anyone? (1)

Xelios (822510) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790340)

(could you see KITT launching UAVs? :P),

The TV show Viper did it 10 years ago: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xtJLlQYs1rY [youtube.com] . In some ways it was better than Knight Rider, but not without it's own rediculous technologies. Transformer style "morphing", EMP guns, harpoon cables fired from little gun pods on the sides able to suspend a musclecar without breaking etc. But no 0-60 in 0.2 seconds, and no talking car. Which is a bit of a shame, KITT was always the best part of Knight Rider IMO.

Atleast pick an original car... (1)

HockeyPuck (141947) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788890)

Let's see Transformers comes out on the theaters, and they pick a Mustang... http://images.google.com/images?q=barricade+mustang+transformers+movie&btnG=Search+Images [google.com]

Now we get a remake of Knight Rider, and they pick the same car.

Re:Atleast pick an original car... (2, Insightful)

jmauro (32523) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788950)

It was actually a Saleen S281E [wikipedia.org] . The rights to the cars we're bought by GM so all the cars had to be GM, no Fords or Volkswagons allowed. Why else would Bumblebee be a Camero instead a Beattle. The only exception was Optimus Prime, which was a Peterbuilt, because GM doesn't make Semi-Tractors.

My guess is that the rights for the new Knight Rider were bought by Ford so it had to be a current production model car. It's sad, I really like the old Pontiac Trans-Am. It lent a air of 80's cool, like the Trans-Am in Smokey and the Bandit.

Re:Atleast pick an original car... (1)

NiceGeek (126629) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789118)

Actually Volkswagen won't let the Beetle be used for any "violent" toy. So that explains the Camaro situation and also why no Transformer Bumblebees will ever be Beetles.

Re:Atleast pick an original car... (1)

Kamokazi (1080091) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788988)

Well even if a boatload of cash from Ford wasn't involved, you have to consider that there are two major iconic American sports cars...the Corvette and the Mustang (there are many others that are well known, like the Viper, but none nearly as popular as those two). It probably fits the general audience better by choosing one of them.

Must be boatload... (2, Informative)

Junta (36770) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789110)

Well, the Viper already had it's supercar TV commercial... er... show in the 90s, but either way, it's not nearly as ubiquitous as the Mustang design or the Corvette design.

Anyway, in the 90s, also, Ford essentially bought out Knight Rider anyway (after my consultation with Wikipedia). In 1997, a show called Team Knight Rider made a brief appearance with a whole set of Ford vehicles.

After the 1991 flop (which GM was still involved with), the 1997 flop, you'd think Ford/NBC would be able to guess that 10 years later, not much is different.

Re:Atleast pick an original car... (1)

Anzya (464805) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789128)

Would guess that picking a car that is popular by germans would be a smart move. Knight Rider is for the Germans like Starcraft is for South Korea.

That said, surley Ford has any car that isn't soo ugly? If that's the best they can come up with...

Re:Atleast pick an original car... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789356)

Doesn't seem the same when not in Firebird form...

Of course on the other hand they could have put the AI technology in a Gremlin, but then it might start acting fidgety and have identity issues.

Re:Atleast pick an original car... (2, Insightful)

CmSpuD (995334) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789508)

And a Mustang GT500 in I Am Legend too. [zercustoms.com]

Maybe I'm just a little bitter 'cause I'm not a fan of the new Mustang, but it's appearance didn't seem necessary in the film at all.

How long will it take... (2, Funny)

cvd6262 (180823) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788894)

I give it 5 minutes before a physics nerd RTFA and then calculates the force of the 0-60MPH and brake times and concludes it would rip out a human aorta.

Morphing. Bletch. (0, Troll)

Animats (122034) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788946)

Oh, please, not more Transformers. Those transformations looked so stupid. At least do something that's geometrically possible.

In the early days of morphing, I was visiting Pacific Data Images, and I stopped by a workstation where an artist had a pictures of a tiger's face and a truck front on screen. She was trying to find control points that would morph to the other without looking totally stupid. It just wasn't working. Yes, you can morph anything to anything, and you'll get a smooth transition, but that doesn't mean it's a good idea artistically.

(Incidentally, Hollywood just made a very good movie: "Charlie Wilson's War". It's a totally outrageous story that happens to be quite true. Written by Aaron Sorkin, who did most of "The West Wing".)

KITT is a Cylon! (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 6 years ago | (#21788974)

Unfortunately, I can't find the original PVP Online [pvponline.com] strip, so you'll have to settle for this forum-bastardized version [galacticabbs.com] .

Re:KITT is a Cylon! (2, Informative)

Antity-H (535635) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789076)

here is the original

http://www.pvponline.com/2007/01/24/turbo-boost/ [pvponline.com]

Re:KITT is a Cylon! (1)

xx01dk (191137) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789194)

Awesome, thanks for that.

Terrible Choice of Base Car (1)

Paul Slocum (598127) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789024)

WTF? A 2008 Mustang looks nothing like an 80's Trans Am!

A modern Corvette [chevrolet.com] would make so much more sense. Of course there are cooler, more exotic choices, but I think to be most consistent with the original series, it should be a GM car that's relatively common. And the Corvette has a similar body style to the 80's Trans Am.

What makes most sense.. (1)

Junta (36770) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789082)

Is whoever pays the most to be the supercar. Remember that commercial^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hshow that featured the Dodge Viper when it was new?

Re:What makes most sense.. (2, Informative)

Dracos (107777) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789236)

Well then, it this case it was Ford.

Years ago I read that Ford has a majority stake in the 3rd largest marketing firm in the country (but I can never remember the name of it), which explains why Mustangs appear in everything. Is there any other explanation why a performance car based on a platform that debuted in 1978 could survive the next 26 years on its own merits? (Yes, I know the 1994 Mustang was "all new", which structurally amounted to a new roofline, increased length and width, and crossmembers added between the front seats, not a complete re-enginering.) Before the Probe came out, Ford was seriously considering it as the replacement for the Mustang.

What would have made the most sense is a Pontiac Solstice. GM has left Pontiac in a kind of limbo, the marque could use some positive exposure. Unfortunately, Knight Rider has picked up some cheese factor over the years, and I bet someone high up in GM management (Bob Lutz?) declined for just that reason.

Re:Terrible Choice of Base Car (1)

osu-neko (2604) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789204)

WTF? A 2008 Mustang looks nothing like an 80's Trans Am!

Um, so?

If you want it to be just like the original series, go put the old tapes in the VCR and just watch the original series. There's utterly no point at all whatsoever in that case.

It's a new show, it's got new stuff. Deal with it...

No! You are all wrong! It should be BMW! M3! (1)

Iloinen Lohikrme (880747) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789992)

No no no! No Corvette! No Mustang! Those are just all-american-lazy-fat-ass-comes-with-soda-cup-holder excuses for a car. No! Trans-Am was a real car! You need a real bad ass car for Knight Rider! And when you want bad ass car the only choice is black BMW M3, CLS preferably. And you know what... you need a real man to drive that car, you need David Hasselhoff to play the part of Michael Knight not some lame excuse for a man.

Actually I'm little disappointed that they haven't recruited Hasselhoff to do the movie, or a new series. The plot could something like... Michael Knight, the lone crusader, victim of an conspiracy, has been in the coma for the last 20 years. As he wakes up, the world around has changed. Knight Foundation over ran by the conspiracy has put him and his friends underground. Michael has no choice, but to fight back, go underground, find his friends and overthrow the conspiracy that has taken over the country... Basically it would be something like X-Files added with The Fast and The Furious, and with a little hint of romance. That's the only choice, to target the same people who watched the original series, but with more mature content and plot... oooh... and KITT... he could pronounce his English with a German accent... that would be the comedical twist ;-)

Not garish at all... (1)

Junta (36770) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789122)

Two wings in the back, generally riced out looking... nope, not the least bit garish...

OMG! G-Forces! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789140)

You bunch of lackwits!

Here you are complaining that the specs as written would kill the driver of the vehicle, and you've missed the most important point.

The car can DRIVE ITSELF!!!!!

Not to mention, it has a sophisticated control suite, which most likely would be able to modify the car's performance to safe parameters for human occupants.

Seriously, I thought the people on here were *nerds*, not stupids.

Re:OMG! G-Forces! (3, Interesting)

xx01dk (191137) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789224)

Being as how it's still an American car, I expect a lot of straight-away chases with no turns. That'll eliminate the lateral G's at least...

Here ya go, Anglophile car geeks :) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EQdSVSH-iF0 [youtube.com] (YouTube Top Gear Mustang) Live rear axle? Pshht "A whacking great girder with a wheel at each end" is what I'll have, thanks.

Re:OMG! G-Forces! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789312)

I know you think you're being funny, but if you think American cars cannot turn, you are wrong. The Corvette can run with the best of them, yes even Ferrari and Lamborghini. There are 60s Mustangs pulling more Gs on the skidpad than most Porsches can.

Re:OMG! G-Forces! (1)

Airw0lf (795770) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789728)

The other great line was relating to the Roush Mustang: "I'd have one of those if I were the sort of person who looks at my sister and thought 'hmmmm'"....

Re:OMG! G-Forces! (1)

American Scum (1126015) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790438)

Wow, thank you! And here I was dead-set that if I were to buy a car (moving from a large F-150 4x4), it would be a Mustang for getting around. I figured that, by now, Ford had created an up-to-date car with HP and handling. They make it seem a little disappointing, and since I couldn't afford the GT500, mine would be even more of a pig in the turns...

Obvious question (1)

nxsty (942984) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789162)

Does it run Linux?

Re:Obvious question (1)

BarneyL (578636) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790616)

And imagine a beowulf cluster of them!

Chameleons did this already (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789176)

A car that can change color? Glen Larson already did that plot twist in his 1989 made for TV movie "Chameleons".

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0097040/ [imdb.com]

Never took off as a series though.

A Mustang? awwww... (4, Funny)

xx01dk (191137) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789186)

I mean, I'm sure it will be totally awesome and all, but it's like if they brought back the A-Team and used a Honda Odyssey as the van.

AIs in a Love Triangle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789212)

Sorry, but every remake of Knight Rider has a disastrously ugly car.
A 57 Chevy and a strange red car in Knight Rider 2000, complete with dumb "Virtual Reality" mode.
Ugly cars in Team Knight Rider.
And now a butt-ugly Ford.

What they _should_ have done is kept the original KITT.
And made a female counterpart from the newer Firebirds before Pontiac dropped the line.
The new firebird had sexy curves in front, so it would have made a perfect female car.
Then we could imagine the fun plot lines involving love triangles between Hasselhoff and 2 cars. Or at least between 2 cars and 2 drivers. KITT showing off for the female. Female car saves Hasselhoff and shows up KITT. That sort of thing.

Tell me this would not have both geek appeal and joe public appeal! It's just too funny to pass up. (Oh wait...it's also an original idea. Can't have that in Hollywood these days, can we?)

Hollywood Ideas. (1)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789264)

Oh wait...it's also an original idea. Can't have that in Hollywood these days, can we?
Well, yeah, I mean, you're not a scab, right?

Re:AIs in a Love Triangle (1)

zakezuke (229119) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789344)

A 57 Chevy and a strange red car in Knight Rider 2000, complete with dumb "Virtual Reality" mode.
I rather thought the classic car in that was a Volvo but clearly it is a 57 chevy. I would have had more respect for the series if they used a Volvo p1800. There is "The Saint" reference and they are practically bulletproof.

1980s marketing memories (1)

zakezuke (229119) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789262)

I remember two things

1. Before Knightrider came on the air they advertised a 800 number you could call to get the specs of the KITT compared to the Dukes of Hazzard General Lee. Even as a pre-teen I thought it was rather stupid to promote a fictional car as being superior to another semi-fictional car.

2. This used 5 years down the road as a creative use for 800 numbers.

But I regret not picking up copies of the this advert... it would have likely been e-bay able when Hasslehoff's popularity was tops in Germany. But now it's the 21st century and you can create all the fictional stats and specifications you like with minimal expense and no wasted paper. Not so good for the collectors market, but a fuck of a lot better for the environment.

Whew! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789348)

"Designer Harald Belker, who has created the Batmobile for Batman and Robin and a next-gen space shuttle for Armageddon"

Oh good, I was afraid it would be cheesy.

"without being hokey or garish" (1)

Chuck Chunder (21021) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789384)

I believe the appropriate phrase is "you fail it".

But the original Knight Rider was hokey (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21789460)

The lead in says the designers don't want to be 'hokey or garish'. The thing is, the original KITT was hokey from the very beginning. That was it's charm. It isn't just quaint in reruns, it was quaint in the original broadcasts.

Sucks (1)

ElGanzoLoco (642888) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789522)

No iPod connector. No backseat DVD player. No hybrid engine. Lame.

The "Pimp my Ride" guys do better.

New car for what? (1)

bazorg (911295) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789554)

My KITT would be the Pontiac again, with some NFSU-like changes:
  • change the pop-out headlights for something that is more pedestrian-friendly
  • lower the suspension a bit
  • change the wheels and rims to something showing less rubber and more carbon
  • change the velvet interiors to black leather or whatever BMW uses
  • add some neon for Super Pursuit Mode
  • change the dashboard to something with a consistent colour scheme. Maybe the one they use for Start Trek NG. Or Apple iPhone.
The rest was just fine, just have the good guy catch the bad guy and kiss the girl in the end. or the other way around to make it more modern...

New iteration should do a "180," gone old-school (1)

vudufixit (581911) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789560)

I would have preferred that they kept "KITT" the same as it always was. There could be some neat dramatic mileage (pun intended) in showing how KITT is now relatively low-tech in comparison to modern vehicles and perhaps what the bad guys have at their disposal. An ongoing subplot could feature how the Foundation's resources were mismanaged in the past and Michael Long/Knight (or whoever has taken over the role) is also tasked with finding ways to rebuild, perhaps upgrading KITT along the way. The early 80s Trans-Am was an unusually sleek and pretty design... I think it still holds up well today.

How original! (1)

MarkoNo5 (139955) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789608)

A Ford Mustang! *gasp* It's a bloody muscle car! And this one is just plain ugly. Why not take the chassis of a Lamborghini Reventon [wikipedia.org] ? It looks like a sci-fi stealth car and is gorgeous (btw, it looks much better in black). Other than that, the Shelby is a horrible car. They fit a huge supercharger and do nothing about the already medieval suspension of the original Mustang. That thing going around a corner quickly just has 'special effect' written all over it.

Re:How original! (2, Interesting)

Bertie (87778) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789780)

Presumably because they're only making twenty of them, they're budget-bustingly expensive, and Lamborghini probably wouldn't be too keen on their car being used in a cheesy TV show.

Umm (1)

ScotlynHatt (764928) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790630)

How is the "on the road" version of the Mustang even closely related to the car in this situation? Additionally, there is enough aftermarket bits to get near 1g out of late model Mustangs so I am not sure about what you are really getting at.

From the perspective of a secret agency building a supercar, you really need to look at initial costs associated with the base model. Ideally you do not want to start with your budget ~$200K in the hole before you start engineering nanotech body panels and braking systems with quantum space-time folding capability.

All aboard the failboat (3, Insightful)

Atario (673917) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789642)

"The goal was to make it look more aggressive without being hokey or garish," Belker says.
Then I think your even-more-ridiculous-than-usual double spoiler has induced massive goal-fail.

Re:All aboard the failboat (3, Interesting)

Alsee (515537) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790560)

They need to drop the KITT name and call it BRICK. They lost the original concept of lean sleek smart stealthy and replaced it with a brick. They may as well replace Hasselhoff with a steroid injected pro-wrestler.

My knee-jerk reaction is to say the designer should be fired, but according to the article it is admitted this was "because of the Ford connection" and apparently the designer was specifically ordered to use this model car and that "Maintaining as much of [this model] as possible was important". Whoever handed down the order to shoehorn this model car in as KITT needs to be fired. But no... he probably got a big cash bonus instead for bringing in big bucks from Ford Marketing to turn this onto a MOVIE-LENGTH-COMMERCIAL for the Next New Product. This goes beyond even the most grotesque level of product placement. This is one big two hour hypefomercial.

P.S.
According to Google I appear to have coined a new word.
Hypefomercial: noun. Etymology: hype+infomercial.
A television program that is an extended advertisement designed to manufacture "coolness" and social buzz for a product, in contrast to infomercials which are usually built around product discussion and demonstration.

-

Thats just horrid (1)

damburger (981828) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789940)

The original KITT had at least some style. The new one is just the chaviest car I can imagine. I suppose its going to have one of those noisy exhaust pipes and a subwoofer?

Re:Thats just horrid (1)

teslar (706653) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790118)

Never mind that, just wait till you see the lights in the windscreen wipers and under the car ;) Also, the soundtrack of the movie will be made entirely by 50 cent.

Oh god, those dumb wheels. (1)

Fantastic Lad (198284) | more than 6 years ago | (#21789956)

Ugh. I know the first series was silly, but this just looks stupid.

What's with those super-thin tires with the rims an inch and a half from the tarmac? --I strongly suspect those things were designed to fail above legal driving speeds. I saw one of those dumb O.J. type car chases caught on camera and the stolen vehicle had that same style of wheel. You know, 'fast and gangsta cool'. --At one point when the wily bandit rounded a corner at a slightly less than legal speed, the car leaned, the rubber compressed as rubber is wont to do, and the rim made contact with the road. 'Tap', and the whole wheel blew out, just like that. When you can lose a wheel simply by turning a corner, you are officially driving a toy. Now whenever I see that design I cringe. --At least I could suspend disbelief with the tacky-and-wonderful Trans-Am. But with this stupid design. . , how do they put it. . ? It's not so much about suspending disbelief as it is needing to hang, draw and quarter it.

The 80's came and went. It was tacky and delightful, but it is long gone. --Unless this Knight Rider is going to be brought up to date with the expectations of a mature viewership (like they did with Battle Star Galactica), and I honestly don't see how this is even remotely possible, then just save everybody the heart-ache and forget it.


-FL

For one: Stop advertising for Ford! (1)

NeuroManson (214835) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790212)

Didn't they learn anything from Team Knight Rider?

And secondly:

"Designer Harald Belker, who has created the Batmobile for Batman and Robin and a next-gen space shuttle for Armageddon, came onboard to give the new KITT. a unique look."

Say no more. It'll suck.

35 MPG and excessive CO2 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21790306)

No truth to the rumor it will get better than 35 MPG, however it will not be able to solve crimes in California due to restrictive CO2 emissions.

I'm dissapointed (1)

GregPK (991973) | more than 6 years ago | (#21790674)

First, I was hoping for a late model Chevy remake of the Firebird(Best looking car ever made) Second, the wheels on the Ford suck... They should at least be aerodynamic and functional like KITT's. Not, sticking out 3 inches from the fender well and low profile. Seriously, what happened to all the aerodynamic wheel designs on the market??? I predict flop due to the crappy car... The only thing that could save it now is Will Smith becoming the new Knight Rider.
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