The Most Iconic Movie Or TV Car Of All Time, According To 33% Of People

There have been some truly iconic movie cars. "Bullitt" made the 1968 Mustang cool, "Smokey and the Bandit" made everyone want a Pontiac Trans Am, and "Mad Max" convinced a generation of moviegoers that a Ford Falcon was the only vehicle you could survive the apocalypse in. However, none of the cars we've just mentioned made the list. According to the 631 United Stated-based petrolheads we polled, there are at least six movie mobiles that are cooler and more iconic than the Mustang, Trans Am, and Falcon.

As we work our way down the list, we're going to exorcise evil spirits, transport illegal spirits, fight crime, and travel through time. Everyone's a winner, too. Even if your favorite car didn't make the cut, there's an off chance your favorite movie or actor got a mention, so read on as we take a look at the six most iconic cars from TV and movies according to SlashGear readers.

Ecto-1 from Ghostbusters

Ghostbusting is serious business, and when you get the call you have to be on the move at a moment's notice. So it's a good thing the Ghostbusters opted for a converted 1950s ambulance as their daily driver. The vehicle was made by Cadillac, given a coat of company branding, and then never taken to the car wash from that point on. Like most Cadillacs, it's essentially a boat on wheels — it weighs 3.5 tons, measures 21 feet long, and is 7 feet wide. Dragging all of that around is a massive 6.3-liter V8 that is capable of producing up to 320 horsepower (via GetJerry).

Between the logos, the grime, and the climactic battle against a skyscraper-sized Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, something must have stuck. More than 1 in 20 of our readers (5.71%) believe the Ecto-1 is the most iconic movie vehicle of all time, and their backing puts it in the top six.

Aston Martin DB5 from Goldfinger

James Bond is no stranger to a fine automobile; he's driven everything from a moon buggy to a sports car that doubles as a submarine. Sadly, the actual, functional jetpack that appeared in "Thunderball" doesn't count, but the most iconic car in the series also cropped up during that movie. The spy could be spotted behind the wheel of one of the greatest British cars ever made, the Aston Martin DB5, fairly early on in the franchise's history. He was given a briefing where the vehicle's various gadgets were outlined during "Goldfinger," then let loose with it.

Under the very long hood was a 4.0-liter straight six engine capable of producing up to 282 horsepower that could accelerate the car from 0 to 60 mph in 8.1 seconds (via Car and Driver). Those may be numbers a modern Volkswagen Golf GTi would eat alive, but the DB5 was designed and built around 60 years ago — and what it lacks in speed, it certainly makes up for in style.

Of course, James Bond wasn't driving a standard DB5, and the optional extras included were a bit more impressive than leather seats and a trim package. The DB5 from "Goldfinger" included hidden machine guns, a bulletproof shield, rotating license plates, and an ejector seat that could send the unfortunate individual on the passenger side sky high at the push of a button. Although it made its debut in "Goldfinger," the classic car ended up making an appearance in more Bond movies than Roger Moore, who played the super spy seven times. You can spot the DB5 in "Goldfinger," "Thunderball," "Goldeneye," "Tomorrow Never Dies," "Casino Royale," "Spectre," "Skyfall," and "No Time to Die." Perhaps that's why the vehicle came in fifth place with 7.29% of the votes.

General Lee from The Dukes of Hazzard

In fourth place at 11.57% is one of the most iconic cars on American television. "The Dukes of Hazzard" ran from 1979 to 1985 and starred John Schneider as Bo, Tom Wopat as Luke, and Catherine Bach as Daisy. The show followed the adventures of a pair of moonshine-running cousins from Georgia as they shot things with bows, jumped a classic muscle car, and generally annoyed the local authorities. A 2005 remake starring Johnny Knoxville and Sean William Scott was also made.

The real star of the show was, of course, the 1969 Dodge Charger which — aside from the vibrant orange paint job and controversial choice of flag on the roof — was a fantastic example of a muscle car. Unfortunately, the show's impact on the '69 Charger was both a blessing and a curse; it made the car incredibly desirable, but the show's stunts destroyed so many Chargers that it created a massive shortage. Producers were forced to have similar cars adapted to look like a 1969 Charger and even took helicopter rides around the suburbs to spot parked Chargers they could potentially buy.

A lot of the surviving General Lees are now in private collections. Golfer Bubba Watson owns the car from the title sequence, which now sports stars and stripes on the roof in place of the stars and bars. Hurricane Ida recently destroyed one of the stunt cars that survived the show — the vehicle was one of many General Lees in former "Dukes of Hazzard" star John Schneider's collection.

K.I.T.T. from Knight Rider

Voice assistants are fairly common in cars these days; you can pick something like Amazon Auto up for less than $50. But back in the 1980s, a talking car was incredibly impressive — and David Hasselhoff's "Knight Rider" co-star K.I.T.T. was the first name on people's lips when you mentioned the concept.

K.I.T.T — which stands for Knight Industries Two Thousand — was a 1982 Pontiac Firebird Trans-Am with a self-aware supercomputer built into it. The vehicle was driven by David Hasselhoff's character Michael Knight, a bored billionaire crime fighter. Knight used his vast wealth and resources to give him the edge over the criminals he faced. The whole thing is essentially Batman, crossed with "Miami Vice" crossed with "2001: A Space Odyssey," with one of Germany's best-selling singer/songwriters in the lead role. Just shy of 14% of our readers wish they could jump in Hasselhoff's car, and that could theoretically happen for one of them.

Like many classic movie cars, the Firebird Trans-Am has been on the auction block at least once. K.I.T.T. was up for grabs in 2021 along with a horrifying 14-foot-long replica of David Hasselhoff from "The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie." It had all of the lights, buttons, and switches you see in the series along with the gullwing steering wheel. It doesn't have a sentient supercomputer that will help you out of sticky situations, but the Hoff himself did offer to deliver it personally if the bidding exceeded 25% of the $975,000 reserve price. Wunderbar.

Batman's Batmobile

In second place we have the Batmobile, which a whopping 27.89% of the people we polled thought was the most iconic movie car of all time. The trouble is, there are multiple Batmobiles, roughly the same number as there are actors that have played Batman. The bored villain-baiting billionaire has attached numerous crime-fighting gadgets to his ride throughout his various incarnations, but that's probably not what the cars should be judged on. Instead, we're just going to look at what are probably the two most iconic Batmobiles the caped crusader has ever driven.

Obviously, the original Batmobile makes the list. The first one driven by Adam West in the iconic 1960s series was based on an Oldsmobile 88, though a version that was based on the Lincoln Futura also appeared in later years. Despite its prestige, the original Batmobile was left abandoned and rusting in a field for decades before it was rescued, auctioned, and eventually sold to someone with the skill and means to lovingly restore it.

Then we have what is arguably the most unique version of a very unique vehicle, the Batmobile that cropped up in the late '80s during Michael Keaton's time as the comic book hero. Between the fins and the mile-long hood, this car perfectly reflects the version of Gotham we saw in the "Batman" movies of that time — a strange mixture of modernity, the 1920s, and the future with a very dark overlay. And like the original, you could actually own this vehicle, or at least an incredibly detailed replica of it. The replica, which includes the famous flamethrower afterburner, was up for auction in 2013.

The DeLorean from Back to the Future

A grand total of 33.60% of our poll's respondents believe that the DeLorean DMC-12 from the "Back to the Future" series is the most iconic movie car in history, and they may have a point. The DMC-12s had a novel way of preventing rust which also provided them with part of their unique look. Instead of using layers of paint, DeLorean fitted its cars with stainless steel bodies. This alongside the angular 1980s sports car profile and the fantastic gull-wing doors created a vehicle that stood out.

Unfortunately, the design choices came with a few downsides. The main reason stainless steel vehicles aren't common isn't reality related to price — it has more to do with weight. Stainless steel is one of the heavier compositions available, and a large chunk of a car's performance is decided by how powerful the engine is compared to the overall mass of the vehicle. As you might guess, the DeLorean was pretty sluggish, with the automatic taking 11 seconds to hit 60 mph from a standing start (via MotorTrend). Ironically, getting it to 88 mph might be more of a struggle than the movie made out, and that's without factoring in the added weight of a flux capacitor and its heavy plutonium-based fuel source.

Six of the movie's cars survive to this day, but if you just want a DeLoreangetting one may not be that much of a stretch. In its two years of production, 9,000 of the original vehicles were built, and around 6,000 survive. So, while rare, the model isn't as rare as something like a limited-run Ferrari or a McLaren F1. Then there's the new electric vehicle DeLorean has announced, but to get one of those right now, you'll have to go back to the future.