Start of the Sydney-Hobart Yacht Race, 1971

May 17, 2011 by 189 Comments

Start of the Sydney-Hobart Yacht Race, 1971
Super Yachts
Image by State Library of New South Wales collection
Format: 1 photonegative – 35 x 24 mm.

Notes: The Amphicar was a German vehicle manufactured 1960-1968. It was the first commercially produced amphibious car and used a Triumph Herald engine over the rear axle to power the wheels and twin propellors. In the water, the front wheels acted as rudders. The body was steel.

From the collections of the Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales

Information about photographic collections of the State Library of New South Wales

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189 Replies to “Start of the Sydney-Hobart Yacht Race, 1971”

  1. Adam is... says:

    This is a lovely shot:]

  2. astrogirl969 says:

    I wonder why the amphicar never took off? 😉

  3. KatieHL says:

    What a fantastic idea and a great shot. Has real character.

  4. B.e.D says:

    Great shot, cool idea cool car. I is good for a fishin journey???

  5. Caio Faria says:

    it’s very funny.

    i loved. let W/B was a great idea.

  6. dwsaraiva says:


  7. br@mbly says:

    Fabulous! The bodywork looks reasonably Heraldish too. Though I don’t think the Herald had little fins on the rear wings like that. And obviously it had a radiator grille.

  8. katachthonios says:

    Funny shot… I wonder how these stood up to rust, especially in salt water?

  9. travellingcharl says:

    I’m amazed that we’re not all driving amphibious cars now. In Sydney you’d get far more use of of one than a 4 wheel drive.

  10. digital vincent says:

    I remember when these Amphicars were new and for sale!

  11. MET50 says:

    Cool photo!

  12. char1iej says:

    These cars also used parts from Mercedes Benz. If I’m not mistaken, the transmission was produced by Daimler-Benz. A 1966 model 770 recently sold at RM Auctions for $44,000 []

  13. Ragbar says:

    Brilliant! A convertible amphibious vehicle… Well, brilliant picture anyway!

  14. troubledog says:

    brilliant vehicle, but none are around today. Something about them must have missed in the marketplace.

  15. br@mbly says:

    Hubby says they were immensely popular in Abu Dhabi in the 60’s.

  16. skittzitilby says:

    LOL—–something similar to mine eh???LOL
    don’t think James Bond would be seen in this one though!!

    thanks for coming and visiting me picklingtures!!

  17. br@mbly says:

    Well, I think this one is way cooler than yours

  18. HarveNYC says:

    Hey, I remember those.
    There was a guy in my neighborhood in the early ’70s who had a Red one.

  19. PeacockDesigns says:

    Ha ha ! Wonderful!

  20. msokal says:

    Cool one!.I want one of these!.

  21. HarveNYC says:

    Actually, Someone made a New Really Cool one a cuople of years ago.

    and even one that Really Goes Underwater

  22. Lu-Gu says:

    Superb! one of my favourites!! ;))

  23. Lu-Gu says:

    Hi, I’m an admin for a group called New South Wales, and we’d love to have this added to the group!

  24. davide61c says:

    Great shot!

  25. si no hay amor, que no haya nada ~ says:

    no entendi :S

  26. artland says:

    wonderfulllllllllll !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  27. arinaldi87 says:

    so cool

  28. Ramsay says:

    I saw one of these once on a visit to Oban in Scotland, must have been about 67-68. Good to see more information about it. Thanks

  29. archifra says:

    Ero ragazzo, ricordo l’evento. Bella!!!

  30. riegalkylie says:

    The character.
    Its Captivating.

  31. rushml says:

    wow I love this one !

  32. wilbura59 says:

    Everything Water-Motive, Oh Yeah!

  33. mprincess jess says:

    very cool

  34. o0nurse0o says:

    Wow so epically cool!!! I dig this shot!!

    My name is Traci and I am just beginning a brand new group on flickr, your photograph struck me and I would love to have it added to my group! Come add it and bring some others along too!

    Awesome shot! Come add it to our pot!

    shot luck
    You are invited to join and add your photo to the
    Shot Luck! I got lucky on this shot!

  35. gaoxiao says:


  36. Georgie Sharp says:

    I remember the hype about the amphibious car … this a wonderful record of HISTORY!!!

  37. q8500e says:

    Hi, I’m an admin for a group called CARS – السيارات – 車 – Autos – coches – автомоб, and we’d love to have this added to the group!

  38. snowqueen_hibiscus says:

    this photo is MAD GORGEOUS!

  39. luanatica says:


  40. Roberto41144 says:

    To help seal out the water there was a secondary latch in the bottom of each door panel. You either pushed it down or or rotated it somehow and it pulled the doors in tighter against the weatherstrips.

    Seen one on display this past summmer at Harold Warp’s Pioneer Village in Minden, Nebraska this past summer..

  41. artland says:

    wonderfullllllllllllllllllll !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  42. Howard33 says:

    Amphicar — It’s as much a classic as the Tucker, Delorean, Kaiser Darrin, Edsel, Chrysler Airflow and others that dared to be different.
    But personally, I’d rather have a 1937 boattail Cord, which wouldn’t even float.

  43. MarkFaviellPhotos says:

    awesome shot, love the way the car and boats all fit in the frame

  44. LukeSkytoker says:

    It looks like a fun party! The car/boat is very cool. I want one.

  45. Mr. Creativeskull says:


  46. maikel.gonzalez says:

    Impresionante para ese tiempo.

  47. Lloyd N Phillips (formerly Green Lantern2008) says:

    Wow- Way Cool!! I always wanted an Amphicar. I’d seen a few of them when I was growing up in Portland and I always thought it was so cool how they’d drive down the boat launch & into the water.
    Great shot.


  48. berkshire757 says:

    Astrogirl969: it was a boat-car, not a plane-car (lol!)

  49. Eastbtm says:

    I like that Amphicar! Nice.. 🙂

  50. Jennifer Barthe says:

    What a great photo!

  51. vox hominis says:

    I want the same one!

  52. .. G-Bye ♥.. says:

    Nice ~

    amazinG ~

    comment mE ~

  53. Perpetual says:

    James in Top Gear!

  54. Stefan Nikolaev says:

    Really amazing!!! I’m impressed

  55. Nashai Del Viso says:

    De pesca en el cadillac estaria bien…

  56. Pafundi says:


  57. Sator Arepo says:

    I want that car

  58. melton-schreiber says:

    I saw one drive right into Clear Lake in California and tool around. Right down the boat ramp-I never forgot it!

  59. Howard Dickins says:

    I remember seeing one as a kid in the 70’s. Fascinating things.
    I don’t suppose there are many left now.

  60. RodKenny says:

    They rusted very well in salt water and are a mess to try and restore.

  61. kastakephoto says:

    Best shot of an amphicar ever. What an amazing car.

  62. Toyman's TOY ROOM says:

    if the big three tried it all our water ways would be contaminated with oil and fuel…..

  63. salah awedat says:

    so coool

  64. ShiyamG says:

    Surreal with an element of mirth

  65. John©...No longer a photographer says:

    Some folks still use them!

  66. Bones From Luno says:


  67. clayangel_sc says:


  68. BACKSPACE Studio - Cebu Budget Wedding says:

    Award Winning Photo – !!! BRAVO !!!

    Instant Favorite @ Backspace Studio

  69. C.Lisboa says:

    There is a red Amphicar just like this in use today in the Guarapiranga Reservoir in São paulo , Brazil. Such a sight!

  70. Dave E S +++ says:


  71. pear art today says:

    A former American president , I believe it was — John F. Kennedy, owned one. He used to shock his guest (sometimes foreign dignitaries) –by driving it into the water.

  72. karmabodhi80 says:

    Absolutely hilarious!

  73. masoud khamis says:

    great shot ><


  74. little linus says:

    ma dimmi te..

  75. No.Expectations says:

    genial fotografia!

  76. Morbit Photography 2008 says:

    that’s one awesome shot 🙂

  77. gmuniz20 says:

    Me gusto

  78. masoud khamis says:

    great work


  79. Pipa Rosa* "Cua Cu" says:


  80. RichardDemingPhotography says:

    My dad actually owned one of these …terrific fun watching peoples faces as you drive into the water!..LOL

  81. hanna_quevedo says:


  82. geleedstn says:

    Nice shot!

  83. Shot by Inspiration says:

    thats so cool

  84. Absurda* says:


  85. Whiskeygonebad says:

    Gee, guess what the insurance would not cover?
    [assuming that it would have even have been available]
    Fire theft & collision?
    First: Collision with what… a pier, another boat or jet-ski a buoy, a swimmer in addition to collision with a car or land-based property.
    Capsizing, sinking, leak damage, fire.
    Drowning perhaps in combination to collision.
    Theft – Report as a stolen car or a boat?
    If you are an underwriter, does your boss hate
    you so much that he would have you work on
    something like this?

  86. pixel... says:

    cool shot…

  87. Dichtung & Wahrheit (Poetry and Truth) says:

    stunning photo, congrats !

  88. blake.fawley says:

    haha i love this

  89. landofthelittlebeaverss says:

    wow this is arwsomeeee :)c

  90. Rayoon <3..! says:

    wonder ful
    exlent pic really lv it cmnt e please

  91. Imanol 6x6 says:

    Great! - View my most interesting photos on Flick

  92. CБT GIЯL → БΙSΗБ says:


    KeEp It Up

    MY New Pic Comment & Note ……

    آلعمر لآ رحت مآ يسوى ..وآلله مآ يسوى


    olá todos bem um grande abraço atodos bjosss

  94. eper1 says:

    i like how you managed tu fit the car in the pohot..! cool =)

  95. Victor Hazelton says:

    magic pic

  96. dblphotography says:


  97. egis91 says:


  98. سِــــع ـــد♥بــــــآك says:

    nice shoot

    keept up

    comment me


  99. melp98402 says:

    I remember that car

  100. Fatima Teresa says:

    la foto esta muy simpatica

  101. Mohamed Danial photo_aholic says:

    it is out of mind!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  102. amimitesh1 says:

    Hi, I’m an admin for a group called India creative mind group, and we’d love to have this added to the group!


  103. Swastika kaway says:

    great pic!

  104. michelin 8592 says:

    Nice. I’m surprised that the guy wasn’t run into by the other vessels.

  105. sonam mahajan says:


  106. RockN says:

    I can remember when the Amphicars were new. It was said of them that they were typical amphibians. They could go on land and in the water but were not well suited to either.

  107. sim-sim says:

    full of activity…

  108. αle vαrgαs ♥ says:

    oooo it’s woou

  109. ftlno says:

    Amazing photo!

  110. Candy Ossemer says:

    Wow…. Magnifique!

  111. tofustudio says:

    In Poland we have a book character, who is called "Mr. Samochodzik" (Mr Car), and he has the same vehicle. Nice picture 🙂

  112. Wigstruck says:

    very cool capture

  113. Whiskeygonebad says:

    I’d wear a life jacket if I were them.
    With all the wash from the nearby boats
    and wave, I’d want a bilge pump as well.

  114. M-O-O-N that spells ... says:

    Such a cool photo and concept.

  115. sualk61 says:

    This historic photo is a fantastic capture of the Amphicar.

    Amphicar at Wikipedia

  116. Ghetto_Boys says:

    great pic!

  117. SwissAttons says:

    I live in Switzerland and actually watch one of these take trips in and out of the lake last weekend !!!

  118. SPAUDO2007 says:

    Hi, I’m an admin for a group called AQUELLOS MAGNÍFICOS AUTOS, and we’d love to have this added to the group!

  119. SPAUDO2007 says:

    Hi, I’m an admin for a group called AQUELLOS MAGNÍFICOS NAVIOS, and we’d love to have this added to the group!

  120. Andreas (no-nick) says:

    Everything was easier that time!

  121. jeremy768 says:

    What a great image.

  122. soulcast says:

    It’s a classic!

  123. Mehow911 says:

    Hi, I’m an admin for a group called Cars you don’t see every day!, and we’d love to have this added to the group!

  124. MyTubeNYC says:

    Hi, I’m an admin for a group called Document ( report ) , and we’d love to have this added to the group!

  125. Andrew Otten says:


  126. -=-+}+=- says:

    my uncle used to have one of those in Africa… still does. 🙂

  127. graficainmente says:


  128. unknownly says:

    i also remember that car boat.yes!

  129. says:

    Hi, I’m an admin for a group called IL PIU’ BELLO! (post 1 – Award 2), and we’d love to have this added to the group!

  130. A.K.M.Ali hossain. says:

    ok it is a good photo.

  131. GoldmineTrash says:



    nice old occassion
    valuable shot

  133. deanna_deanna2003 says:

    How fun. I love that you have added the history for each picture. We found old glass negatives in my Grandmothers belongings when she passed. No one knew about them. We can only guess as to who they may be as they are from the 1850s approx. We wish we knew.

  134. State Library of New South Wales collection says:

    Hi Deanna2003,
    Your glass negatives may be important and you should take them to your nearest city library, museum or historical society for advice. If they are from the 1850’s, they are fairly rare and early in the history of photography

  135. Wellsman2010 says:

    Ive seen these too in London too, but many years ago. Great pic and fun.

  136. duckspeaks says:

    Great product!

  137. artland says:

    Hi, I’m an admin for a group called artland, and we’d love to have this added to the group!

  138. Ftuta says:

    fantastic idea !!!!

  139. 20thcenturyrox says:

    That’s excellent…

  140. Catch Me Now says:

    Hi, I’m an admin for a group called Catch That Cool Car, and we’d love to have this added to the group!

  141. The Big Jiggety says:

    MArvelous retro amphibian craft. Love the atmosphere too.

  142. joshuareap says:

    Roads? Where we’re going we don’t need roads.

  143. mcertou says:

    very cool !!!!!

  144. Boylakbay™ - Sais says:


  145. jhow10 says:

    mtoloko *-*

  146. Hygor Lennon says:

    o.O o carro dentro da aguá! ;] Legal!

  147. szatmary robert says:


  148. Eder Brazolin says:

    Muito legal….. adorei….!!!!!!!!

  149. juanita74belle says:

    Love all these old shots capturing our history! So lucky to be able to go back and see what wonderful things people have done before us =)

  150. White_Tiger103 says:

    ahh…looks like in the 20th century !! very nice photo

  151. ღ NoClub. Fam ღ BÉ NHƯ NHƯ <3 says:


  152. JukkaWatanen says:

    My brother, a professional skipper for Nautor yachts, had one. It leaked like hell and rusted away quite quickly. They should have made it out of stainless steel and fiberglass, then, maybe it would have had a chance.

  153. Forestmorning says:

    1971,the year I was born!

  154. Ambrosiana Pictures says:
    From Milan, Italy
    AP Logo per Commento Flickr new
    ITA – Bello Scatto, Complimenti !
    ENG – Very Nice Shot !

    Stringi amicizia su Facebook – Become a friend on Facebook
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  155. metalmech obermaier says:

    that’s cool.

  156. imagetaker! says:

    Great Picture! saw one of these Cars at a Show a few weeks ago

  157. toygun1725 says:

    this is photoshop .D

  158. boatman681 says:

    My dad bought one of those in 1968. It was a 64 model. Twin screws in the back, sealing door jams. It was way cool but way scary. Most of those things sank and that sea looks a bit rough! Mom sold it for 50 bucks

  159. coolbe2009 says:


  160. Moypa says:

    haha thats just awesome!

  161. Brian P Carey says:

    Wow, lots going on here!

  162. Natasha72 says:

    Why don’t they still make stuff like that? It just seemed so much more fun back then!

  163. your mistakes are your style says:

    Most of these ideas end up being good at neither task. This one is reputed to have been a bad car and worse boat 😉

  164. Natasha72 says:

    @your mistakes…. Good point, but to me it’s more the intrinsic value of being able to do two things with the same object. And… it just LOOKS cool.

  165. kityeelai2000 says:

    very nice!!haha~~~

  166. Javier Polizzi says:

    Fantastico! 😀

  167. herrbelial says:

    great shot

  168. WATT WCD says:

    OMG!! this is cool!!

  169. AnaAndric29 says:

    its a classic

  170. The Big Jiggety says:

    Extraordinary. We’ve gone down hill since then.

  171. tupoto says:

    Wow! A great picture :D!

  172. Nicole Honeywell says:

    What a great pic!

  173. Domw says:

    I just discover that I’ve taken a picture in Paris of the same model but in red:
    France, Paris - Voiture rouge - Red car

  174. DwainThomasPhotography says:

    wonderful image…please help me make explore

    lSee Image here

  175. Beachy says:

    This photo has been featured on

    25 captions so far!

  176. The_Bricklayer says:

    I saw one of these at my uncles boat yard when I was a young lad.My guess is the steel body didnt last long so they gave up on em.Suprised no one went fiberglass with them.

  177. FrozenMoments Photography says:


  178. nishe7 says:

    great photo.

  179. Tripper Dungan says:

    So great.

  180. Merv Colton says:

    Super shot! There have been loads of mad ideas that have come and gone, this was one of the better ones!

  181. Daisy_Bata says:

    wow this is an awesome photo!!!!!

  182. БРАТСТВО says:

    Very cool!

  183. MikhailVD says:

    It is a very nice picture, may I use it at my SEO blog?
    циклевка полов и обновление пола

  184. klimaservisi says:

    great thanks

  185. Antonios Pizza & Italian Restaurant says:

    I like the boat/car

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