Rare Rides: The 2008 Cool Hydra Spyder, a Stylish Boat Car for the Discerning
Today’s Rare Ride marks the first time we’ve featured an amphibious car in this series. It goes on land and on the water and ensures its owner looks very cool wherever they are.
And you can hardly tell it’s a boat!
The Hydra Spyder is a current model manufactured by Cool Amphibious Manufacturers International, or CAMI. The company is based in South Carolina and produces several different types of amphibious vehicles. Models include a tour bus, a search and rescue vehicle, a floating Ford Explorer, and a full-sized motor home. They also make one non-seafaring vehicle, the Biotrike. That one is a plug-in hybrid three-wheeler.
CAMI’s most successful product is the amphibious tour bus called the Hydra Terra, which sees tour duty in various coastal cities. But for the individualist who likes to direct their own land-to-water action, the Hydra Spyder is the way to go.
In production since 2006, the Spyder is a two-door cabriolet. It can drive directly into the water, where it tucks in its wheels to create the required flat hull for boating. CAMI ensured the Spyder had plenty of power on land and sea via a 450 horsepower Chevrolet 6.2-liter LS3 V8. Paired to a five-speed manual, the Spyder is kind of a Corvette that goes in the water. Top speed on land is claimed at 125 miles per hour, as well as a cruising speed of 46 knots (52.9 mph) in the water.
The hull is filled with foam, and the car’s outer shell is made of a lightweight aluminum alloy to keep weight to a minimum. As a result, the Spyder weighs 3,300 pounds despite its generous proportions. Inside the white and blue trimmed nautical interior are the various required boat controls, a four-spoke steering wheel, some old Ford switchgear, and space for four passengers. The exterior is a CAMI original design, though its headlamps were donated by a 2000s Mercury Cougar.
Today’s Rare Ride the Nautical Nonsense is for sale in Missouri, and the dealer notes it’s one of just six Spyders from the 2008 model year. With 170 miles on the odometer, its ask is $182,000.
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