The German word for bat is “fledermaus,” which literally translates to “fluttering mouse.” That means that the Bavarian Batman would be called “FledermausMann,” and he would ride around fighting crime with his young ward, Rotkehlchen, in the Fledermauswagen (Batmobile, roughly). Unfortunately, das German batmobile doesn’t exist in real life, but ze Germans have a close enough approximation: the 1975 BMW 3.0 CSL, built with an aerodynamic fin that would make the boy wunder say “holy schnitzel!”
In 1972, BMW introduced the super-light 3.0 CSL as a new platform for race cars. The 3.0 found success on the European Touring Car Championship, where it took home wins in 1973, and every year from 1975 to 1979, helping establish BMW’s brand as a lightning fast and sporty car. Built to be uber-light (the L in CSL stands for Leicht, the German cognate), the BMW 3.0’s body structure was built with thin gauge steel that allowed the car to weigh in at a feathery 2,800 lbs. The bat-like fins running along the top of the front fenders, plus the spoiler on the trailing edge of the roof and the tall rear wing give this speedster its trademark bat-like look. This BMW is up for auction on May 12 in Monaco, and it’s expected to fetch a high price right off the bat.