What Would Santa Drive?
As Santa prepares for a night that makes Le Mans look like a stroll in the park, we, in our infinite wisdom, have taken it upon ourselves to answer a question as ancient as the North Pole itself. What car would the man in the red suit choose to drive? The answer lies in deciphering Santa's preferences. We're looking for a vehicle that resonates with Santa's refined tastes, exudes enough charm to match his own jovial personality, can handle the Herculean task of delivering presents to the far corners of the globe, and, most importantly, will earn him a hearty nod of approval from the discerning Mrs. Claus.
Written by Archie Hill for The Apex by Custodian. Edited & produced by Archie Hill, Charles Clegg & Jeremy Hindle.
What do we know about Santa? Well, he undoubtedly likes his power unit up the front, with enough space in the rear for a mountain of presents. His favourite colour is red, and he named one of his reindeer Prancer…
Enter the Ferrari 250 GT ‘Breadvan’
It’s as if Bizzarrini had Santa in mind when he designed the Breadvan. It offers the perfect blend of style and functionality. With its beautiful shooting brake design, Santa can load up with an abundance of presents to ensure no child is left without a gift.
The front/mid mounted engine is a 3 litre naturally aspirated V12, and is sure to get the job done in time. A man of his experience will also appreciate its racing history. At the 1962 24 Hours of Le Mans, the Breadvan overtook all of the 250 GTOs that were competing, until a driveshaft failure forced an early retirement. If only Santa had a team of little helpers to manage reliability…
Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake
This particular Zagato Shooting Brake was specified by Santa himself (probably), and it would make perfect sense given this is the ultimate grand tourer. The hand crafted luxury interior ensures Santa travels in comfort and style, while its elegant exterior is sure to win favour with Mrs Claus.
It’s not the quietest car on the list though. That 6.0 litre naturally aspirated V12 could certainly serve as Santa’s new jingle, but he will struggle to go unheard. Mind you, with a top speed that exceeds 200 mph, just because you hear him, doesn’t mean you’ll see him.
BMW M3 Touring
If Santa’s been keeping up to date with the latest car news, then he will no doubt want to give the M3 Touring a go. The Touring offers a more understated alternative than a Ferrari or Aston, which is of course important for a man who needs to fly under the radar. With the latest tech and advanced driver assistance, Santa can now deliver gifts with unmatched efficiency.
The Touring also boasts 500 litres of boot space, and 500bhp sent to all four wheels - a deadly combination of power and practicality.
Aston Martin DB5 Shooting Brake
Rumour has it that Santa’s a bond fan, so if the Vanquish Zagato is a little too loud, perhaps the DB5 Shooting Brake is a better option. It also has the biggest boot space listed so far, at a whopping 1130 litres - ample room for his gigantic payload. Let’s not forget that Santa also has his own Q branch, so the list of modifications available to him are endless.
Citroen SM 'Breadvan'
If Santa’s after something a little more weird and wonderful, then maybe he’d be drawn to the Citroen SM Breadvan. Built for high speeds so that Michelin could test its performance tyres, the SM could hit 177 mph, in the 70’s! The impressive top speed was partly down to its Maserati engine, which was a 3.0 litre V6 from the Merak SS, producing 300bhp, but the cars breadvan design also helped reduce drag - a selling point likely to find favour with Santa.
If that wasn’t enough, the SM also has a brown corduroy interior and a centre console not too dissimilar from the one in his sleigh.
Chevrolet El Camino
When Santa's got more than just presents to deliver, he might want to consider the El Camino. It's the mullet of vehicles: business in the front, party in the back. Perfect for hauling toys, lumber, or a couple of mischievous elves to the workshop. The El Camino also combines the utility of a truck with the comfort of a car, and its beautiful simplicity ensures easy maintenance.
There are many iterations of the El Camino, but a few 1970 models were blessed with the LS6 454 V8, which was Chevy’s most powerful engine at the time, and had an output of 450bhp.
Hyundai Santa Fe
Santa is, after all, a humble man and loves a Dad joke.