Minichamps MIN400097090 1965 Quandt Group Amphicar - Hamburg Police Car (1:43 Scale)
"One thing is certain: There is great development ahead for the automobile."
- The American Magazine, Things I've Been Thinking About by Henry Ford, February 1936
The Amphicar is still the only amphibious automobile ever mass-produced for sale to the public. The German vehicle was designed by Hanns Trippel and manufactured by the Quandt Group at Lubeck and at Berlin-Borsigwalde, its name is a portmanteau of "amphibious" and "car".
Production started in 1961. From 1963 to 1965 cars were assembled from parts inventory built up in anticipation of sales of 20,000 per year. Production ended in 1965. Cars were titled in the year they actually sold rather than when they were produced. For instance, an Amphicar that was built in 1963 could be titled a 1968 if that was when it was first sold. Most Amphicars were sold in the United States. Cars were sold in the UK from 1964. Total production was 3,878 vehicles before the company folded. 99 right hand drives were converted from left hand drives. Some were used in the Berlin police department and others were fitted for rescue operations.
Although underpowered by modern standards, a well maintained Amphicar can be a remarkably agile and pleasant vehicle to drive on both land and water. The fact that such a high proportion - roughly a quarter of the almost 4000 produced - have survived more than forty years is a testament to their very high initial production quality, and to the lengths to which many owners will go in order to maintain and restore their beloved vehicles.
Pictured here is an awesome 1:43 scale diecast replica of a 1965 Quandt Group Amphicar used by the Hamburg, Germany police department. Sold Out!
Length: 4 inches
Width: 1.5 inches
Historical Account: "Swim-Ins" - During the fourth week in July, Amphicar owners convene at Grand Lake St. Marys in western Ohio. These events, and similar ones nationwide, are called "swim-ins".
In water as well as on land, the Amphicar steered with the front wheels making it less maneuverable than a conventional boat. Notably, two crossed the English Channel in 1968 enduring 20' waves and gale force winds.