Four years ago, Elon Musk made news by strapping one of his Tesla cars onto one of his SpaceX rockets and sending it into space. But a good half decade before that, a car collector in Indiana also decided to combine space race aesthetics with automotive technology and create a flying saucer-shaped car.
Thanks to the creativity and willingness to pursue his own wacky ideas, Steve Anderson customized an old 1991 Geo Metro to look like something you’d expect to see flying in a declassified Navy video.
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The Geo Metro was a subcompact car, and Anderson, who over the years has run Indiana businesses as varied as karate dojos and car repair shops, enlisted the help of a friend, car customizer Denis Bellows, to achieve his vision of UFO glory. Most of the rig is burnished aluminum, with a cut-down steering wheel designed to look like an airplane yoke, and a glass dome from which Anderson and his passenger (often a green, bobble-headed alien called Genghis) can watch the countryside fly by.
Despite its unusual appearance, the vehicle is street legal, and Anderson drives it around the state to various car shows and “cruise ins” where it’s always popular with spectators. A quick trip around town usually draws crowds of loony-loos eager to see what is inside the dome.
Feel free to gawk and even take pictures. But whatever you do, don’t call it a “UFO.” For one thing, it can’t actually fly. Nor is it unidentified: this car has a license plate.