Christmas has inspired some of the best movies and TV specials in motion picture history. So after binge-watching all the holiday flicks we could get our cocoa-covered hands on, we came up with a list of some of the coolest vehicles we saw. Did we miss any big ones? Let us know in the comments section below.


10. Oldsmobile Six – A Christmas Story

1938 Oldsmobile F-Series Touring Sedan
OnAllCylinders writer Will Schertz actually caught up with the owner of the real Christmas Story house, along with one of the vintage Oldsmobiles that was used in the film. Check out that story and podcast here. (Image/Brian Jones)

Any car that would freeze up in the middle of the summer on the equator deserves a spot on the list. And, since it was the catalyst for the “Ohhhhh Fudddggge” scene, its appearance here is mandatory.


9. Volkswagen Beetle – Gremlins

red first gen Volkswagen vw beetle bug
A red air-cooled VW Bug propels Billy to safety—once he gets it started, of course. (Image/OnAllCylinders)

When we first meet Billy and his Beetle, Darlene Love’s “Christmas, Baby Please Come Home” is blaring through its speakers. We couldn’t think of a better way for Spielberg to begin this oft-overlooked Holiday classic.


8. Ford Condor II – Christmas Vacation

Cousin Eddie's RV
This humble RV is being meticulously cared for and occasionally appears at car shows. (Image/Atlanta Motor Speedway)

Sure, we could have picked the tree-toting family truckster station wagon, but Cousin Eddie’s “tenement on wheels” is far more memorable.


7. Batmobile – Batman Returns

Tim Burton Era Batmobile from Batman movie
We will never miss an opportunity to talk about the Batmobile. (Image/OnAllCylinders – Lori Sams)

Thanks to Michelle Pfeiffer’s iconic Catwoman suit, it’s easy to forget that Batman Returns is set during Christmas. And the Batmobile is there, tearing around snow-covered Gotham City streets to stop the Penguin.


6. Checker Cab – Scrooged

The once-ubiquitous Checker Cab is now a rare sight on New York City streets. Cue the Niagara Falls. (Image/OnAllCylinders)

Perhaps the second-best time-traveling car ever, this one gets bonus points for having Buster Poindexter behind the wheel. And it’s the only cab that delivers to the floor of your choice.


5) Willys MB/Ford GPW – White Christmas

Willys MB Jeep at vintage military vehicle show
It’s almost impossible to tell whether the Jeep is a Willys or Ford in the movie—but you can read this to learn about the GPW/MB distinction. (Image/OnAllCylinders – Will Schertz)

While a Jeep makes a logical appearance in the opening scenes of war-torn Europe, we LOVE the fact that General Waverly brought one back to serve as his personal shuttle at his Vermont ski lodge after the war.


4. Chrysler LeBaron – Planes Trains & Automobiles

The actual car from the movie wears metallic pea green paint, perhaps as an homage to the wagon from Vacation—an earlier John Hughes film. (Image/OnAllCylinders)

We can think of maybe one other Hollywood vehicle that met such an ignominious fate. While it’s more a Thanksgiving movie, this noble K-car definitely deserves a spot on the holiday list.  


3. British Motorcycle – The Snowman

vintage triumph Bonneville british motorcycle
While it’s tough to determine which precise model the Snowman rides, it appears to be an amalgam of classic British bikes from Triumph, BSA, Royal Enfield, and Norton. (Image/OnAllCylinders)

What do you do if you’re a Snowman that’s magically come to life? Well, you kickstart a classic Brit bike and scramble through the serene English countryside—with a helmet on, of course.


2. Dodge Brothers Touring – It’s a Wonderful Life

This particular Dodge Brothers Touring Car has a very interesting backstory. You can read it here. (Image/Summit Racing)

Another mandatory vehicle for this list. George’s venerable Dodge plays a pivotal role in the iconic film and, in many ways, echoes Mr. Bailey’s honest, humble nature.


1. Berkshire Steam Locomotive – Polar Express

This is the Nickel Plate Road Class S-2 Berkshire locomotive #765, similar to the Class N-1 Berkshire that inspired the Polar Express. (Image/OnAllCylinders – Alan Sakalas)

While it may not be a car or truck, we just figured you’d be on board (pun intended) with putting a 3,000 horsepower, 400 ton Berkshire steam locomotive on the list. 


What’d we miss? Is there some favorite holiday movie or special that we’ve just got to see? Let us know in the comments below!

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Author: Paul Sakalas

Paul is the editor of OnAllCylinders. When he's not writing, you'll probably find him fixing oil leaks in a Jeep CJ-5 or roof leaks in an old Corvette ragtop. Thanks to a penchant for vintage Honda motorcycles, he spends the rest of his time fiddling with carburetors and cleaning chain lube off his left pant leg.