The Top 5 Cars of Back to the Future

Alice Nicolson

By: Alice Nicolson

It’s time to dust off the old hoverboard, charge up the flying car and check your messages on the fax machine. Today, the 21st October 2015 marks Back to the Future Day, the official day that Marty McFly and Doc travel to in 1989’s Back to the Future II, the second film of the hugely successful and well-loved trilogy.

When we think of the Back to the Future films, the first image that comes to your mind is the DeLorean Time Machine, right? The car is now an iconic piece of Hollywood memorabilia and fondly remembered by car lovers. But can you remember any of the other cars featured in the sci-fi trilogy? There are a whole 55 separate automobiles and trucks in the films. So in celebration of the day, let’s take a look at the top five cars of Back to the Future.

DeLorean DMC-12

Marty McFly: “Wait a minute. Wait a minute, Doc. Ah… Are you telling me that you built a time machine… out of a DeLorean?

Doc: “The way I see it, if you’re gonna build a time machine into a car, why not do it with some style?”

Of course, the number one car featured in the trilogy has to be the DeLorean, turned into a time machine by Doc in the first film. One of the cars used for filming can be seen at Universal Studios Hollywood.

The car is commonly referred to as simply ‘DeLorean’ as it was actually the only car to be manufactured by John DeLorean’s DeLorean Motor Company. It was released to the American market from 1981-83, although the car’s production line was set up in the unassuming Northern Irish suburb of Dunmurry. A particularly distinctive sports car, it features gull-wing doors, a fibreglass chassis and a stainless steel finish.

The company went into administration after the American motor industry slump, but it lives on due to its use in the Back to the Future films and is probably one of the most memorable vehicles in movie history.

Ford Super De Luxe

Marty McFly: “There he is, Doc! Let’s land on him, we’ll cripple his car.”

Doc: “Marty, he’s in a ’46 Ford, we’re in a DeLorean. He’s rip through us like we were in tin foil.”

Ahh, Biff Tannen, everybody’s favourite bully. The man certainly drives one of the best looking cars in the trilogy, though, the 1949 Ford Super De Luxe Convertible.

Unfortunately, the car tends to get ruined with manure, and though the car doesn’t deserve it, Biff certainly does. The car is identical to the former 1942 style, but with a new heavy horizontal grille. The original car used for filming is now in a private collection but you can see the car in this short film.

Packard Custom Eight Victoria

LorraineBaines: “Marty, don’t be such a square. Everybody who’s anybody drinks.”

[Marty takes a sip from Lorraine’s bottle then spit-stakes as he notices Lorraine lighting a cigarette]

Marty McFly: [nauseatingly] “Jeez! You smoke, too?”

LorraineBaines: “Marty, you’re beginning to sound just like my mother.”

This is Doc’s car, who is, as we know, all about style! The 1948 car features in the films a few times, but its most memorable scene is when Marty borrows it to take his mother to the ‘Enchantment Under the Sea’ High School dance. It’s also the scene where Marty sees a different side of his mother as a young girl, and has to avoid her advances!

BMW 733i

George McFly: “Now, Biff, I want to make sure that we get two coats of wax this time, not just one.”

Biff Tannen: “I’m just finishing up the second coat now.”

George McFly: “Now, Biff, don’t con me.”

Biff Tannen: [stammering] “I’m sorry, Mr. McFly. I-I meant I was just starting on the second coat.”

After Marty changes his parents’ lives for the better, we find that the formerly shy and bumbling George McFly (Marty’s father) has had an upgrade from an old Chevy Nova to an impressive BMW 733i. He even has a personal car washer in the form of Biff Tannen! In the second film, we see the very same Biff Tannen waxing his Grandson Griff Tannen’s heavily modified flying BMW, twice.

The newly confident George McFly is a successful author who can clearly afford one of the most expensive (and coolest) German motors of the period.  

Volkswagen Station Wagon

Doc: “Oh, my God. They found me. I don’t know how, but they found me. Run for it, Marty!”

Marty McFly: “Who? Who?”

Doc: “Who do you think? THE LIBYANS!”

Not technically a car, but a very memorable Back to the Future vehicle none-the-less. The Volkswagen Station Wagon features in the first film, driven by Libyan terrorists who are angry that Doc has stolen their plutonium (which is needed to fuel the time machine, obviously).

This scene develops into a fantastic Volkswagen Station Wagon vs. DeLorean Time Machine chase, and according to the DVD commentary, when one of the Libyans is unable to restart the wagon, he exclaims, “Damn German car!”