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Meanwhile, on the Internet
Tribune Reporters
'Meanwhile' is a collaborative blog about all the crazy stuff on the Internet. Here, reporters from various Tribune desks tell you what you (almost) need to know about topics ranging from technology to YouTube sensations. Contributors: Michael McFall, Dave Newlin, Matt Piper, Brennan Smith, Erin Alberty. Edited by Sheena McFarland.

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Gift idea: ’66 Batmobile on sale for $200K

In case you did not know what to get that special vigilante in your life, Hammacher Schlemmer has you covered: a roadworthy replica of the 1966 Batmobile.

Hammacher Schlemmer, which has the kind of expensive, eccentric catalog reminiscent of Sky Mall magazine, is offering the recreation for the holiday season at the meager asking price of $200K. There are no atomic batteries or turbines for speed, but the 430-horsepower engine in a Lincoln chassis does come with a propane tank on the back to simulate the classic ride’s afterburner effect.

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I do not know how that is even legal, but the company assures their Batmobile is totally street legal, cross their hearts. They even added rearview mirrors and a rear video camera, which were absent from Adam West’s original, to make sure it was on the up-and-up.

Besides those tweaks, Hammacher Schlemmer assures that the Batmobile is TV-show accurate. It’s complete with bubble-canopy windshields, chrome rocket tubes behind the rear windshield, a blinking Batphone inside, switches that open the hood and trunk and a rotating red beacon to alert the citizens that you swore to protect that you are burning down their streets with an open flame on the back of your car. Seriously, how is that legal?

"Other intriguing, if less functional, accessories include a glowing detect-a-scope screen, a Batbeam ray that raises from a hood-mounted antenna, and empty rear parachute packs," according to the product description.

No word if there is any shark-repellent in the glove box.

Michael McFall



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