The coolest snowmobiles of all time: Let it snow!
1939 Antarctic Snow Cruiser: Much did little
The failed Snow Cruiser was abandoned in Antarctica
At more than 15 metres long and nearly 4.5 metres high, the Antarctic Snow Cruiser was huge, but its performance never matched its size. It suffered technical problems even on its maiden trip from Chicago to Boston in 1940. But on arriving in Antarctica, things got very much worse for the 37-tonne behemoth. It hadn't sufficient traction to cope with snow and ice and the failed Snow Cruiser was abandoned in Antarctica.
1937 Bombardier B7, B12 and C18 Snowmobile: Before the Airbus came the snow bus
Inventor and designer Joseph-Armand Bombardier, founder of the Canadian aerospace and transportation company which bears his name, created his first snowmobile in 1937. The B7, as it was called, was followed by the 12-seater B12 and the 18-seater C18, which brought the hoped-for financial success in the decades to come.
Sno Coupe (1970 - 1973): Gliding like a gentleman
In the early 1970s, the Innovar Corporation of Dunnell in Minnesota recognised the potential for an elegant, gentleman's snowmobile with side-by-side seating, rollover protection, plenty of luggage space and much more besides. A great idea, yet only 200 units of the fashionable Sno Coupe were ever built.
1955 Tucker Sno-Cat Type 743 Double Drive: Blame the nut
Even if the Tucker Sno-Cat actually made it across the gorge in the end (video), the Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition (CTAE) from 1955 to 1958 made very little use of it. According to rumour, the engine never ran right after a nut fell into it during assembly.
1970 Rupp Super Sno-Sport: 150mph on snow and ice
Did you know that by the end of the 60s, quarter-mile races on frozen lakes had become popular? And since there were virtually no rules, Mickey Rupp, founder of Rupp Manufacturing, built a dragster with chain-drive and runners. Equipped with an approximately 500HP Ford V8, the Rupp Super Sno-Sport of 1970 reached a staggering 150mph on snow and ice. The following video shows the dragster at start-up.
1958 Cuthbertson Land Rover: Long legs
In 1958, Scotsman James A Cuthbertson presented this Land Rover tracked vehicle. It had great benefits on swampy ground, but the height did make it rather unstable. Ultimately, only 15 were built.
1966 VW T1 'Snowmachine': VW bus for après-ski
Bored with the usual après-ski party? The tech-savvy owner of this 1966 T1 has done a great job: not only is the microbus a chain-drive, it also has a 1,600-Watt sound system. An après-ski party in the slopes-grade T1 is truly hard to beat.
Tundra Buggy: Polar bear safari
The ten-tonne Tundra Buggy, now produced in Churchill, a small community in the Canadian province of Manitoba, can accommodate a whole school class - and return them safely across the snow. Why? To explore the life of endangered polar bears up close.