So, this may be it, folks—the last thing we ever publish.

The much-publicized end of the Mayan Long Count calendar is Dec. 21, 2012—the end of the 13th b’ak’tun. The end of all things?

It is believed by many that Nostradamus and Roland Emmerich predicted doom and gloom for this date. NASA officials say people need to chill.

We’re going to plan for either scenario. And by plan, we don’t mean stockpile food and emergency supplies so much as we mean having a few stiff drinks and talking about how much it’s going to suck if our iPhones stop working.

In honor of Armageddon Eve, we decided to compile a list of the vehicles we want to have in various apocalyptic scenarios. Because this is the stuff we think about. Here’s what we came up with:

Magnetic Pole Reversal

According to an article in Science News, a geomagnetic reversal happens every 200,000 years or so, and normally takes about 4,000 years for the complete shift to take place. One may be happening now. Should the north and south poles reverse suddenly in some radical and unprecedented way causing Earth’s gravitational pull to suddenly disappear, there is only one responsible choice of survival vehicle.

Vehicle of choice: Santa Claus’ sleigh

No, not that one. (Image/Summit Racing)

An obvious choice, but the correct one. The forces of nature do not affect Kris Kringle’s air sled. And assuming the elves start loading the sleigh with toys for the Earth’s nearly 2 billion children prior to Christmas Eve, we’re going to have a heck of a lot of cool stuff to play with while we hot rod around drinking cocoa spiked with a little Doomsday stress-relief medicine. Most interesting will be figuring out whether Santa’s North Pole retreat will need to be moved to Antarctica in the post-pole reversal aftermath.

Asteroid/Meteor Impact

Perhaps all of the experts at NASA are wrong, and there really will be a deadly asteroid impact on December 21. If we’re not incinerated by the heat blast, crushed by the impact, or saturated by the mega tidal wave from a potential water landing, we’re going to need something for any terrain or environmental scenario. And what’s our favorite all-purpose vehicle?

Vehicle of choice: Jeep CJ-2A

(Image/Bryan Irons)

Aside from the obvious problem of fueling this bad boy in a post-apocalyptic world (a problem for any combustion engine!), we think this mean machine is the perfect vehicle in case the highways become undriveable. But mostly, we just love Jeep.

Zombie Pandemic

Zombies are all the rage these days. From AMC’s The Walking Dead, to “Run for Your Lives,” to actual instances of people eating one another.

Even the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have gotten in on the fun horror.

Should a full-fledged zombie siege commence on the End of Days we require a couple things: The ability to outrun them and the ability to seek refuge in the one place television and movies have taught us zombies don’t fare particularly well—in water.

Vehicle of choice: Studebaker Weasel

Studebaker Weasel front quarter

The Weasel is our favorite of all the amphibious vehicles we researched. Hopefully, we’ll be able to find a large-enough body of water to enjoy a peaceful zombie-free zone and get in a little much-needed fishing time. The open cab creates a safety problem en route to whatever water we find, but our tentative plan is simply to whack any nearby zombies we come across with our oars and shovel, Shaun of the Dead-style.

Black Hole

Whether we’re talking about naturally occurring black holes in outer space, or a runaway man-made black hole from some particle-collision experiment gone awry, we’re operating under the assumption that nothing will survive. And since there’s nowhere to hide, our “survival” vehicle is more of a “go-out-with-a-bang” vehicle.

Vehicle of choice: DeTomaso Pantera


Pick pretty much any supercar you’d like here, vintage or modern, perhaps the joyful sensation of a Bentley Continental GT or a Ferrari 458 Italia? In the everything-is-getting-sucked-into-a-giant-black-hole scenario, we feel like it’s okay to indulge in a little automotive excess for one final drive.

Alien Invasion

Should the end-times bring with it a War of the Worlds or Independence Day scenario, we’ve decided to hunker down, bust out the tinfoil hats, and try to blend in. There are a lot of good candidates for vehicles that resemble alien spacecraft. And we considered many. But in the end, we had to go with this.

Vehicle of choice: The Jetson’s Space Car

Jetsons Spaceship at Detroit Autorama 2023
(Image/OnAllCylinders – Dave Fuller)

C’mon, if we’re allowing aliens to exist in this little hypothetical exercise, then why can’t we allow the Jetsons too? It’s stylish, speedy, and has room for four—the perfect ride for escaping hordes of aliens, talking sharks, spy squirrels, Speed Buggy, and whatever else lands on Earth. But don’t worry, if an intergalactic fight does break out, Plan B is to round up Cousin Eddie and the Fresh Prince, and take some invaders down to Chinatown.

Solar Flare

Even if a massive apocalyptic solar flare didn’t incinerate everyone and everything not wearing 2 million SPF sunblock, such a powerful electric discharge could fry our nation’s entire grid. Anyone who watched the pilot episode of NBC’s Revolution can tell you what a less-than-ideal situation a prolonged worldwide blackout could create.

Nonetheless, we’re all about looking on the bright side and making lemonade and whatnot around here. So we’re rolling with…

Vehicle of choice: Solar car

Perhaps we just settle for a solar charging station? (Image/Stellantis)

We know, we know. Just work with us here. We acknowledge that not all of this is particularly well thought out. But in the interest of making the best of a bad situation, rocking a solar-powered car during a solar storm just feels like the right play. We’ll probably change our minds once we’re actually piloting this thing and experiencing its limited off-road capabilities. Though, in the off chance aliens were to invade immediately following the solar flare incident, this is another candidate for blending right in with our extraterrestrial overlords.

And just like that, we feel like geniuses again!

The Rise of the Machines

According to this less-than-uplifting article from Popular Mechanics, there is a theory called Moore’s Law, which mathematically ensures that artificial intelligence will eventually eclipse human intelligence due to technological advancements in computer chips, which double in power about every two years.

Assuming Judgment Day of the A.I. variety takes place on December 21, we have decided to combat the problem with…

Vehicle of choice: Amish buggy

We mean, with a V8 swap, maybe? (Image/OnAllCylinders)

Right!? We thought it was brilliant, too! While all of you guys are trying to outwit Skynet with John Connor and his futuristic dad, Johnny Ringo, we’ll be plodding along in the Amish countryside with Grandma Yoder, some excellent pie, and nothing to fear except for the occasional rogue Amish beard cutting attempt. Have fun trying to cut off these non-beards, Samuel Mullet!

Is the world going to end? Some day, probably. Is it going to coincide with the end of the Mayan calendar?

If it does, we have a lot of hard-to-get vehicles to round up.

What type of vehicles would you prefer for a particular doomsday scenario?

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Author: Matt Griswold

After a 10-year newspaper journalism career, Matt Griswold spent another decade writing about the automotive aftermarket and motorsports. He was part of the original OnAllCylinders editorial team when it launched in 2012.