Insuring the most popular TV cars

Gina Roberts-Grey

Speeding along cartoon roads, chasing down an evil Penguin or Joker or outrunning an inept sheriff are just of the duties of TV’s most popular cars. But even the coolest of cars needs insurance in the event it’s stolen, a tree falls on it, or villains and crooks try to disassemble it for its gadgets and gizmos.

Here’s a look at what it would cost to buy auto insurance for some of the most iconic rides on TV.

KITT, 1982 Pontiac Trans Am, "Knight Rider"

Artificial intelligence in this souped-up black Trans Am meant KITT, which stood for Knight Industries Two Thousand, could crack jokes and be sarcastic while still being bulletproof and able to jump over obstacles, maybe even tall buildings. The highly advanced robotic car makes GPS systems and talking technology of today look obsolete.

Estimated annual premium: The basic 1982 Trans Am would cost about $900 a year to insure, according to Eric Hurt, vice president of SIG Insurance Professionals in Texas. All of KITT’s bells and whistles probably would require policy add-ons that could total $1,000 a year -- on top of the standard auto insurance premium.

The General Lee, 1969 Dodge Charger, "The Dukes of Hazzard"

Made famous on “The Dukes of Hazzard,” the General Lee helped Bo and Luke Duke always stay one step ahead of bad guy Boss Hogg. That’s after they used the car to transport their uncle’s outlawed moonshine. Chases, stunt and high-speed jumps were all part of a day's work for the car, whose doors where welded shut.

Estimated annual premium: Roughly $800, according to Hurt, as long as you didn’t speed, race or chase like the cousins Duke did. Oh, and don’t even think of committing crimes like running moonshine. Drive like those good ol' boys, and the premiums are sure to soar -- or your auto insurance might not be renewed.

The Mystery Machine, "Scooby Doo"

The multicolor van with a groovy paint job served as a mobile office and part-time home to a Great Dane, a bunch of hippie teens and their ghost-hunting gear. Not to mention Scooby’s cherished snacks.

Estimated annual premium: Hurt says a similar ghost-hunting "shagadelic" foursome could expect to pay about $650 a year for auto insurance on the Mystery Machine. But you might want to have a pet-restraining device for your “Scooby” to make sure your pooch stays safe.

The Batmobile, "Batman"

Wing-shaped tail fins, supercharged afterburners, armor, state-of-the-art computer (for its time), assorted gizmos and all sorts of crime-fighting gadgets make the modified 1955 Lincoln Futura concept car one of them most coveted vehicles in TV history.

Estimated annual premium: Brian Rauber, a Farmers Insurance agent in Missouri, says the Batmobile would cost more than $3,000 a year to insure. That is, if Batman could buy insurance. “An insurance carrier would have to get beyond the speed capability and the weaponry on the car,” he says.

Red Ferrari 308 GTS, "Magnum P.I."

Magnum P.I., portrayed by Tom Selleck, was cool, suave and debonair, even in floral Hawaiian shirts. So it makes sense that his car would be just as cool.

Estimated annual premium: If you want to cruise around the streets of Honolulu (or any other city) like Magnum, you’d have to shell out roughly $1,500 a year for auto insurance, according to Hurt.

1975 Gran Torino, "Starsky and Hutch"

The “Striped Tomato” on “Starsky and Hutch” had nearly as many fans as the show’s stars. It was so popular that Ford released a limited-edition version with a similar paint scheme so fans could emulate their favorite crime-fighting duo.

Estimated annual premium: Auto insurance for a "Striped Tomato" of your own would be about $1,100 a year, according to Hurt.

1983 GMC G-Series, "The A-Team"

The band of former special agents turned do-gooding fugitives, including Mr. T, cruised around in a less-than-inconspicuous van outfitted to be nearly as strong as a tank. The van has had its share of crashes, been disassembled and reassembled, and has dodged several bullets. It also had a distinctive paint job that made it a target of the A-Team’s foes -- and would make it a target of would-be thieves.

Estimated annual premium: Hurt says you could expect to pay about $750 a year, but with several crashes and traffic tickets, your rates could go up by 20 percent.

Mach 5, "Speed Racer"

The 5,000-horsepower animated racing machine had seven buttons on the steering wheel that could adjust traction, slice obstacles out of the way, turn the car into a submarine and more. And that was in the 1970s. Imagine what bells and gadgets artists could draw today.

Estimated annual premium: Rauber says the Mach 5 would cost nearly $2,000 a year to insure.

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