When Stephen King wrote Christine in 1983, the ridiculous premise of a living car that was crazier than a scorned ex seemed a bit ridiculous if not downright cheesy. Yet, it was brilliantly scary and fueled our imaginations of soulless machines possessed by malevolent forces. Of course, King’s tale of 1958 homicidal Plymouth Fury was not the first of its kind as there are actually old tales going as far back as the ’30s of runaway vehicles fueled by the paranormal.
Because we always love a good ghost story, urban legend, or creepy pasta, we put our special team of ParaDetectives (aka our interns) to scour the Internet for vehicles in dire need of an exorcist. So here are our Top 5 Haunted Cars:
5. Cape Town’s Jumping Car
Back in 2004, a Cape Town family was in for a rude awakening one morning, when the patron of a guesthouse was woke up to the sound a loud crash. Rushing outside, the man, along with his family and German guests, were shocked to see their guests’ rented Renault Mégane “jumping” around in what seems to be a failed carjacking. Failed would be generous in this case since the entire neighborhood witnessed the event. As the car eventually crashed, closer inspection revealed that the car was not only driverless… it was locked with the handbrake still up. Renault South Africa attributed the vehicle’s strange behavior to a rusty starter cable.
4. Black Volga
An old Soviet urban legend, this story refers to a Soviet Union era limousine named the Volga. This ominous black limo would roam around abducting children and harvesting their organs. As to who drove these death limos often varied, citing priests, nuns, Jews, vampires, satanists, and even Beelzebub himself. Fun fact: Volgas were expensive and mostly government-issued. If KGB horror stories are to be believed, the reality may actually be scarier than the attached legend.
3. The Phantom Bus
We go back to the Old Country, and since it is an old country, hauntings are probably a given; after all, people have lived and died in London for centuries. Perhaps the most prominent of these hauntings was in 1934 involving an accident in Cambridge Gardens. A vehicle suddenly swerved for no particular reason causing the car to crash to a wall, killing the driver inside. Eyewitnesses pointed out that the vehicle was dodging a double decker bus that was hurtling towards the car, which then vanished without a trace. The accounts of this bus become eerily similar: no visible driver, appears at approximately 1:15 AM at the same exact spot, seemingly looking to ram any vehicle unfortunate enough to be there at that time. The Phantom Bus was last seen during May 1990.
2. James Dean Porsche 550 Spyder
Most people would probably have guessed that this would be here, maybe even at the top of the list. But not this day. Nicknamed “The Little Bastard”, Dean’s death was just one of the many misfortunes that plagued the owners of the sinister vehicle. After Dean’s death, the car and its parts were involved in breaking a mechanic’s leg, killing another driver, injuring would-be thieves trying to steal some of its parts, burning down the museum that it was supposed to be exhibited in (while surviving unscathed), breaking a student’s hip in the following exhibit, and managing to kill the driver of the truck transporting it before mysteriously disappearing. A more detailed account of the Lil’ B’s victims can be found here
1. The GoldenEagle
So you may ask, how in the world does a 1964 Dodge 330 beat out the Little Bastard? Well, this particular Dodge is apparently responsible for the death of at least 14 people, including children. The story goes that the GoldenEagle started out as a police car. All three officers who drove the car were involved in gruesome murder-suicides involving the officer’s respective families. Other accounts tell of vandals dying in a horrific car crash in the ’80s and ’90s . Most bizarre was a child who, by merely touching the car, ended up murdering his entire family and burning his house down a few weeks after being dared to do so. It got to the point that in 2010, a church group stole the car, chopped it up, and hid the pieces in junkyards across the country. Of course, the long time owner of the car has been clamoring for help from the Internet to help her locate the missing parts. Surprisingly, despite owning the car for a long time, she seems completely fine. Of course, they do call her “The Sea Witch of Old Orchard Beach”. You can learn more about that here