Preferably the current full-size models. Were the older models faster, though? I would imagine the current ones may have a speed governor.
They have to be capable of highway speeds, as they are not limited to a single city, but they are not designed for high speed touring. Here’s a Motor Trend test drive report. 0-60 mph in 24.81 seconds pretty much sums it up.
Well, it comes from Michigan, where the speed limit on the interstates is generally 70 mph – but only wimps drive below 75. So, if you were designing a great Michigander icon, would you put a speed governor on it?
They’re just a Chevy W-series (aka Isuzu N-series) cube van with a funny body. A normal V8 cube van has no problem cruising along at full interstate speeds even when loaded up, and I’d imagine one that’s empty and shaped like a hotdog instead of a brick would only be faster.
I’ve been passed by one on a 75 MPH interstate, so they’re at least capable of speeds in that range.
OMG, I haven’t seen or heard of one of these since I was a kiddie, early 1960’s or so. They still exist somewhere?
That article you cited begs some clarification. I only skimmed it (tl;dr), but it is dated December 1987 and seems to describe the W-mobile as something new. However, about 8 page-downs into the text, he seems to say that the vehicle being tested is a 1969 model, and about one page-down further, he mentions that the first one appeared in 1936.
ETA: Does anyone know what kind of a show they put on inside the W-mobile these days? The show I saw as a kid, as best I recall, was some kind of little-kiddle space ship trip, with the operator as space pilot. Space travel sci-fi (very primitive by modern sci-fi lights, even compared to Star Trek) was very hot in those early space-race days.
it has been stopped for speeding in Texas, but hasn’t every hotdog been stopped in that state.
there are 6 full sized weiners with 5700 Vortec V8 engine on GMC W-series chassis.
I’ve got some Oscar Meyer connections. I’ve met socially with the guy who is in charge of the Weinermobiles (there are 6 of them I think). I don’t have his contact information, but one of my best friends works with him.
I’ll see what I can find out.
They’re still actively used by Kraft Foods, which now owns Oscar Mayer (though the ones currently in use are almost undoubtedly not the same ones from the 1960s). They have several Wienermobiles (it looks like four at the moment) which tour the U.S. They have a blog on their web site, where the Wienermobile drivers post about where they are:
I passed one on I-95 South last summer on my way down to Atlanta. I even managed to snap a picture of it as I went by in case no one believed me. Of course I don’t know what happened to that picture, it’s probably still on my old phone.
My FIL just posted pictures on facebook a couple days ago of the one going through Rosemont, IL.
Can the Weinermobiles do donuts? Maybe those would they be called bagel dogs.
if you catch them at a scheduled stop then you can blow a wiener. they give away wiener whistles.
If you’ve ever been passed by a Weinermobile, clearly you cannot cut the mustard and probably seriously lack any ability to ketchup to one.
I relish any opportunity to see the Weinermobile.
Back in the late 80s, a colloege buddy got a job driving one of these around, he covered a fairly large region. One weekend he is back in town with it and he takes a few friends out for a drive. Driving a bit too fast on a back road, we get pulled over by a cop.
So I can add that it has been ticketed for speeding in NM also, but that was in a 35 mph zone.
The Wienermobile was stocked with beer that night. And those whistles.
They let Dave Barry drive one once, and he took it to a used car lot and tried to trade it in for a car that looked a little less like a giant wiener:
It’s 60 MPH unless they are hot dogging it.
I think it depends on how big a cliff you drive it off of.
My classroom looks out on a random* parking lot that has, on any given day, five to ten Weinermobiles. So I’d guess they have more than four out at a time (or four touring nationwide, and more locally).
(Yes, staring at a long row of yellow-and-orange Weinermobiles lit by the setting sun is indeed surreal.)
*Not owned by Oscar Mayer, but maybe they rent space there.