Ranked: The top six vehicles from the Star Wars universe
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Today is 04.05.20, and while the numbers alone mean little, it is the day adopted by Star Wars nerds, geeks and fans (probably in that order) as the unofficial Star Wars day.
May the fourth – please don’t make us explain the play on words – heralds a wave of social media posts, costuming befitting of an American Halloween, parodies from Family Guy and Robot Chicken among thousands of other individuals and shows in movies and YouTube.
And for DRIVEN, it’s time to suspend belief and have a bit of fun, as we name our Top 5 Star Wars vehicles.
We’re talking driving enjoyment here, so we’ve forgotten about the typically fan-serving Millennium Falcon, simply for the fact it looks like, well, a hunk of junk.
We need some semblance of style to match performance, so we’ve put together what we think are the ‘best’ vehicles to drive or own in the Star Wars universe.
6: Slave 1: Aside from fan boys drooling all over and after what was, in our opinion, a somewhat overrated character who met his (supposed) doom like a punk, Boba Fett did have a cool ship.
Well, eventually. Its name may not conjure the best historical images, but it was largely seen as an oddly shaped ship that hid and followed Han Solo from a floating junk pile and ultimately loaded up the smuggler up as a block of carbon ice to claim his bounty from The Empire (this all makes perfect sense to SW movie fans, honest).
But 2002’s Attack of the Clones prequels really showed the ship’s insane agility and artillery. And that’s the kind of performance that puts it on this list, a bit ugly, but very effective.
5. T-47 Airspeeder: The ultimate David in a battle against Goliath, the Empire Strikes Back’s iconic Hoth snow scenes launched one of two iconic vehicles, the smaller one being the one we’d love to pilot, the Airspeeder/aka snowspeeder. A two-man vehicle, the snowspeeder was light, agile and packs a lot of power: like a hyper hatch with 300kW. With blasters and a rear-facing passenger arming a harpoon, it took down walking buildings by using the old trick of tying its shoelaces together. As far as ultimate ground transport goes, the flying wedge just looks cool and car-like enough to earns its place here. And it can top out at 1100km/h, about 100km/h short of the speed of sound.
4. Tie-fighter: Another small, compact personal fighter that’s way faster than its rival at 1200km/h, the TIE (Twin Ion Engine) Fighter was largely disposable cannon-fodder in the movies, but they were labeled as cheap and fast, rather important aspects given the propensity for them to be blown up and disposed of in the same way as a colony of ants at a picnic. As evidenced in 2015’s The Force Awakens when piloted by the ‘enemy’, they are supremely fast, but rank below the X Wing, as the iconic originals simply because the original TIE Fighter can’t hyperspace – and of course that’s an important parts of space wars, well dur…
3. T-65 X-Wing: With its iconic S-foils that open up for combat, it’s the ultimate and original hero vehicle, and as far as personal transport goes, who wouldn’t want to pilot their own single-seater like the X-wing? With artillery to take down a Death Star or two, shields, hyperdrive and the ability to be submerged undrwater for years without any seeming adverse effect, it’s the X-Wing that’s the Star Wars galaxy’s most versatile, iconic and recognizable ship… at least one that doesn’t look like a double-stacked pan pizza with tumours. Grab a PS4, Battlefront game and a VR headset, and tap into the special X-Wing VR mission to truly appreciate how much fun it is to pilot an X-Wing.
2. AT-AT: The All-Terrain-Armoured Transport was slow, but like a giant tank, it just can’t be stopped. Well, easily. With a two-driver crew in its ‘head’ with space for more, the heavily armoured vehicle seems easy enough to drive, and proved virtually unstoppable. It established itself something that was truly cool and highly credible to be associated with, as a powerful cruiser. It took sneaky and alternative thinking tactics to take it down, but it remains an icon of unstoppable might and power.
1. 74-Z Speeder Bike: So insanely fast, its riders can barely keep control of them, but still easy enough for an Ewok to jump aboard and blaze off, the Speeder Bike came into fame in 1983’s Return of the Jedi, marking itself and its riders as an icon cooler than Boba Fett. Supremely fast, agile and personal, it’s like the ultimate superbike with the matching cool sound, and even features a head-up display that’s linked to the rider’s helmet. Also, in addition to its iconic scenes, both bike and rider were given another pop culture boost in the recent Mandalorian TV series, with a very amusing, mildly disturbing but iconic scene aided by a Hollywood actor Jason Sudeikis as one of the Troopers.