I was reading Car and Driver (the completely impartial house organ of BMW) the other day while on the elliptical at the Y, and read about these way cool rides. Me want! Me want!
This bad boy that looks like a self-propelled grain wagon is a Critter Gitter. They're custom-made by a company in Texas for use on some of the big game ranches in the Lone Star State, places that are about the size of Rhode Island. I could see these being used by anyone who has a spread of miles and miles of miles and miles in places like Montana, Wyoming, Canada, Africa, or Australia. They appear to be able to carry about a dozen or so people to where the game is. Despite its size, the company says they won't bog down all that easily (big tires and a fairly light body). It looks like the perfect vehicle for the upcoming zombie apocalypse or post-collapse road rally!
The Critter Gitter makes vehicles like our Caiman Mine Resistant Vehicle-
-look positively wimpy by comparison. Oh, I know. The MRAP would laugh at explosives that would make the Critter Gitter so much scrap metal.-But it looks impressive!
The Critter Gitter reminds me of one of the great sci-fi movie vehicles: the Landmaster from 1977's Damnation Alley.
Did you know that Damnation Alley was supposed to be 20th Century Fox's big summer sci-fi blockbuster of '77? But some upstart from Modesto, California, named Lucas came out with some film or other that no one remembers. Oops! That's show business...
Anyway, back to the vehicles at hand:
This vehicle has a balcony up front (the 'quail seats'), which might be fine to use when the vehicle is stationary, but I wouldn't want to ride there. Guaranteed that platform will catch if you hit a ditch or you get a mud bath if the driver decides to barrel across a large puddle or pothole. Actually, I can't imagine the ride on one of these is all that great-any bounce or bump is going to get magnified due to the vehicle's height, no matter how robust the suspension.
The previous vehicle parked next to a more conventional safari-style Jeep. The Critter Gitter Company appears to be able to customize about any truck/van/SUV in addition to the big homebuilt jobs. The factory and lot has to look like Delta Force's garage or some road gang hideout from a Mad Max movie. I'd put the place on a 'must see' list if I were headed down to Texas.
The vehicle in the C/D article had a fairly nice interior with seats all around the bed facing in, and a big table handy for serving a field lunch or the after-hunt beer and cards session. For $350k a vehicle, I'd want a few niceties myself!
If I ordered one of these, I'd want a configuration like this. I even like the three-color desert camo scheme, even though it wouldn't be all that practical around here. I'd have a small toilet and sink built into that rear compartment and maybe a couple of fold-down bunks. Picture something like an officer's cabin on a small ship and you'd get the idea-something you could take anywhere and use as a portable hunting camp. Oh yes-I want this to be amphibious, too. Let the state figure out if they want to license me as a truck, boat, or recreational vehicle! Knowing how things work here, they'd probably want me to license it as all three.
Maybe they could build davits on it, like a yacht, and I could hang one of these SAS Jeeps off my Critter Gitter like a lifeboat.
And no wussy seatbelts or safety equipment-just the open air and clear fields of fire all the way around!
Cool, huh? Now how many of you want one? If you have $300k dollars not doing anything you can have one built. Who's in for a Critter Gitter Time Share?
If you want see more of these fine pieces of machinery, here's the company's website.
And here's a video. Somehow the banjo music seems to fit the vehicle.