West Coast Customs Creates Actual Banshee From GTA V, and More Real Life Fake Vehicles

GTA Banshee Front

West Coast Customs, the car modification shop popularized by the MTV show Pimp My Ride and home to millions of Xzibit “Yo Dawg” memes, made headlines this week after unveiling a physical Banshee, the sports car featured heavily in the Grand Theft Auto games. The car was commissioned not by a 21 year-old lottery winner but by game developer Rockstar to promote the upcoming release of GTA V. Most cars in the GTA universe are thinly veiled reproductions of existing cars, and since its first appearance in GTA III, the Banshee has been one of the game’s fastest cars (it is a copycat rendition of the Dodge Viper). While the Rockstar press release doesn’t confirm what the donor car was, considering the car’s profile and bodywork, it appears that the real world Banshee has come full circle and is likely based on a Dodge Viper as well. As per the video game’s lore, the Banshee comes adorned with badges signifying that it is produced by the fictional Bravado automaker. The sheetmetal and cockpit were created in conjunction with Rockstar using property from GTA, so the entire car appears to be a very faithful adaptation. The Banshee will be given away by video game retailer Gamestop in a contest leading up to the game’s September 17 release date.

To commemorate the creation of an imaginary automobile, let’s take a look at a few more cars ripped from digital and adapted to analog.

Mario Karts

Real Life Mario Karts 2

Another WCC creation, Nintendo ordered several real life Mario Karts to highlight the release of Mario Kart 7 in 2011. The standard Kart driven by Mario was realistically produced, as was Luigi’s Bumble V Kart that debuted in the game. Oddly enough, the Karts were first unveiled at the Los Angeles Auto Show that year rather than at the seemingly more appropriate E3 video game trade show. No matter, as men and video games go hand in hand just as well as men and cars do.

Tron Lightcycle/Batman Tumbler

Parker Brothers Concepts Lightcycle 2

Since the dawn of time, man has wanted to ride a lightcycle. It’s a good damned thing that the lunatics at Parker Brothers Customs exist, because they took a look at 2010’s Tron: Legacy and decided that badass neon-trimmed motorcycles absolutely had to be built. The two wheeled nerdgasms went into a limited production run, with 10 lightcycles sold for $55,000 apiece. The same guys whipped up the Tumbler vehicle from the modern Christopher Nolan Batman films, as well as the accompanying Batpod cycle.

The Homer

We’ve written about the Homer before, but it is so fantastic that it bears mentioning again. What better place to recreate the most disastrous car failure in the history of The Simpsons (other than the squirrel-squashin’, deer-smackin’ Canyonero) than on the 24 Hours of LeMons circuit? Hats off to Porcubimmer Motors for realizing this unbelievably ridiculous machine.

Bravado Banshee by West Coast Customs

Photos courtesy of Rockstar, West Coast Customs, and Parker Brothers.


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About Cameron Rogers

Cameron Rogers is the founder and lead writer at Downshift Autos, the only automotive blog on the Internet*. Born in the back of an AMC Gremlin, Cameron vowed to never let this extraordinarily embarrassing detail define him, so help him God. He drives a GTI but absolutely will not shut up about it if somebody asks. He will not hesitate to let people know that no, they shouldn't get a Porsche 911 when a Morgan 3 Wheeler is so obviously the superior choice. He is obsessed with the seats of a Carrera GT and the steering wheel of a Fisker Karma. He once sat in the driver's seat of a Tesla Model S, his greatest accomplishment to date. He is just now realizing that writing an autobiography, however miniscule, in the third person is odd and unnerving. *As of this writing, Cameron has been informed that there are, in fact, many websites and blogs centered around cars and car culture. He regrets his grievous error.

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