How The Gibbs Aquada Works

The Gibbs Aquada is an amphibious vehicle that is capable of driving on both land and water. It can easy transition from land to water.

It almost seems like something that you would see in a children's fantasy movie or on the Jetson's, but believe it or not, the Gibbs Aquada can actually do what it promises. This amphibious vehicle, which made its debut in 2003, is capable of driving on the road like a car and riding in the water like a boat. On season six of ABC's hit reality dating show "The Bachelor," bachelor Byron Velvick got to experience this miracle mode of transportation first-hand. He picked up one of the ladies who was vying for his affections in a Gibbs Aquada, unbeknownst to her, and he then drove his date from road to water for a spontaneous surprise. It is pretty unlikely that she had ever been on a date like that before. Viewers all across America were stunned when they saw Byron drive a gorgeous shining convertible right into a river, and the Gibbs Aquada has been all abuzz ever since this wild ride aired. While it is easy to see how fun and thrilling a vehicle like this would be to drive, it is quite difficult to imagine how such a car is technologically possible.

The Gibbs Aquada is classified as a High Speed Amphibious (HSA) vehicle. Unlike a typical automobile, you step into the car, as you would into a boat; it looks like a two-door convertible, but it actually does not have functional doors. Of course, jumping into a convertible is more fun anyway. Also unlike a typical convertible car, there are three front seats in the Aquada. The reason they decided on three seats was so that a driver, a water-skier, and one other person could all be accommodated - the driver doesn't have to sit in the vehicle all by himself while he drives around the water with a water-skier in tow. The steering wheel is positioned in front of the middle seat.

The Aquada has a175-horsepower, V6, 2.5 liter, 24 valve engine, similar to the engine specs of a 2005 Nissan Altima. Remarkably, speeds can reach 100 miles per hour on land. The same engine is utilized for powering the vehicle in the water - it pushes the movement in the jet. The jet, which was designed by Gibbs engineers specifically for the Aquada, is compact and lightweight yet stunningly efficient. Not only can this vehicle effortlessly transition from land to water, but it is equally easy for it to transition from water back to land.

One might suspect that corrosion would be a major problem with a vehicle that is amphibious, but Gibbs has taken careful tests and measures to ensure that the materials that they use to manufacture the Aquada can withstand corrosion from salt or any other environmental factors. One also might wonder if the vehicle could possibly sink if the engine was to malfunction, but in fact it cannot. The Aquada is totally aluminum-bonded and was made to be perfectly buoyant - it will not sink, no matter what, even if it was left out at sea. The tires retract at the push of a button once the transition from land water is made. Don't worry - you couldn't retract them on land if you accidentally pressed the button. The vehicle has sensors that will verify that it is in fact in the water and that it is deep enough in the water to retract the wheels. The tire retraction process takes about four seconds from the moment that you press the button.

One might think that since this is a multi-faceted car, riding on land and water, it is neither a really good car no a really good boat. However, it is actually quite a high-quality machine in both capacities, and it has clearly taken many years of diligent attention to detail by its manufacturer to bring to fruition. Plus, if someone is expected to pay over two-hundred and seventy thousand dollars for one of these land and water traversing marvels, it better be an impeccable product. In the future, amphibious vehicles might be the standard for transportation, and such technologies could drastically change transportation as we now know it.

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