How Much Does the Batmobile Cost?

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Image: Centives

Discovery’s car enthusiast Jerry James Stone walked you through how to build a street-legal Batmobile, but a group of econ students at Lehigh University have calculated how much the real thing costs: about $214,700, after adjusting for inflation.

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The students behind the blog Centives had previously calculated the price of a real Death Star (which by the way runs about $852,000,000,000,000,000, or about 13,000 times the world GDP). When it came to crunching the numbers on Bruce Wayne’s snazzy auto, the students looked at Batmobile History, which has a record of every single version of the Batmobile ever made. They arrived at an average figure of $214,700, taking into account the most expensive, which is a modified Mercedes Benz CLK-GTR that would’ve cost about $1.8 million in 2010, and the cheapest, a 1950s Studebaker Wayne used from 1950-55 with an estimated value of $13,604 in today’s dollars.

The Batman’s flair for the dramatic has increased substantially over the years. In the first four decades of the Batman’s existence, between 1940 and 1970, the average Batmobile cost only $32,000 inflation adjusted dollars. The Batmobiles over the next 30 years cost an average of $358,000.

Chrysler and Lamborghini vehicles make up about a third of the Dark Knight’s rides. About half of his foreign cars are from Italy.

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But the caped crusader’s taste in cars tells a quintessential American story. Centives explains:

Batman’s method of transportation also reflects wider trends in American history. Up until the early 70s the majority (70%) of Batman’s vehicles were made in the United States. From 1973 onwards just 25% of the Batmobiles were made in America, reflecting a broader decline in the American automotive industry.
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