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De Lorean – Back to the Future

Published: 20 October 2008

Ranking: 4      

Year of release: 1985

The car: DeLorean DMC-12

Why it’s special: It was the perfect cinematic storm – story, screenplay and cast all perfect – yet the real star of the show was the DeLorean, chosen by Doc Brown because its stainless steel construction was ideal for ‘flux dispersal’.

Best bit: In the mall car park Doc puts the DeLorean time machine to the test for the first time, sending his dog Einstein one minute into the future and leaving those infamous burning tyre tracks on the ground. Car nuts the world over immediately wonder how the hell a DMC-12 managed 88mph. And, of course, who can forget the end: ‘Doc, we better back up, we don’t have enough road to get up to 88.’ ‘Roads? Where we’re going, we don’t need roads…’

Pub fact: The running joke where Marty keeps cracking his head on the DeLorean’s door was not in the script – Michael J Fox kept forgetting to duck so they left it in.

DeLorean reborn for 2022: check out the new DeLorean electric car

Plot overview: Marty McFly helps out his friend Doc Brown, and ends up being taken back in time by Doc’s time-machine. Marty, a boy of the 80’s, has to come to grips with being in the 50’s and get his parents to fall in love to set straight the damage his presence has done to the events of the past.

For: ‘Don’t worry, Marty, as long as you hit that wire with the connecting hook at precisely 88mph the instant the lightning strikes the tower… everything will be fine’

Against: ‘Are you telling me my mother’s got the hots for me?’

CAR verdict: Did what John Z DeLorean never could – made the DMS-12 cool.

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By Greg Fountain

CAR's former managing editor, editor, caption chiseller, noticer of ironies