From the Hustler and Dodge T-Rex to the Tyrrell P34… ten six-wheeled vehicles

Why have just four wheels when you can have six? A question asked by numerous car manufacturers, designers and customers in recent years. 

From luxury, custom-made vehicles to Formula 1 cars and fire engines, six-wheel motors have been appearing on roads and race tracks for decades – with varying degrees of success.

Most six-wheelers tend to be off-roaders designed to tackle the most difficult terrains – though others have tried adding an extra pair of tyres to boost handling performance.

Here are some of the most iconic six-wheel cars seen through recent generations. 

Kahn Defender Flying Huntsman

Kahn Design’s Flying Huntsman wasn’t cheap – with prices starting from £250,000

London-based custom car maker Kahn Design has repeatedly pushed boundaries with its models, but none more so than its Defender Flying Huntsman.

The Land Rover powered Huntsman is lengthened by 1200mm (47 inches) and it’s also 150mm (six inches) wider to accommodate the tyres.

But the model doesn’t come cheap – with prices starting from £250,000. 

Hennessey VelociRaptor 

The Hennessey VelociRaptor has six-wheel drive and costs $349,000 - or a little over £312,000

The Hennessey VelociRaptor has six-wheel drive and costs $349,000 – or a little over £312,000

Car manufacturer Hennessey has made its own Ford VelociRaptor for consumers to purchase – with the monster-sized vehicle proving a formidable presence on the road. 

This six-wheeler comes with 20-inch wheels and off-road suspension, as well as extra lights and bull bars.

It has six-wheel drive and costs $349,000 – or a little over £312,000.

Last year, the US brand launched its Mammoth 1000 6X6 TRX, which not only sported an additional two wheels but is as long as a small yacht. 

Under the bonnet is a 1,012bhp 6.2-litre supercharged V8 engine, while the seven-metre-long body rides on 20-inch wheels wrapped in chunky 37-inch off-road tyres.

Only 12 will be produced each year, with each six-wheeler offered at a price of $449,950 (£360,000).

Foers Ibex 6×6

The Foers six-wheeler is often used by fire services, particularly those stationed at airports

The Foers six-wheeler is often used by fire services, particularly those stationed at airports

Foers may not be a familiar name to all car lovers, but they are lauded in the 6×6 world due to their specialist Ibex models.

The company, which is based in Rotherham, South Yorkshire, supplies vehicles to the fire services, foresters and farmers who may need its ability to travel on and off-road.

As well as highly specialised models such as those designed to fight fires, they also sell six-wheel trucks.

Williams FW07D

The Williams FW07D sadly never made it to the start line in Formula 1 because six-wheel cars were banned in 1983

The Williams FW07D sadly never made it to the start line in Formula 1 because six-wheel cars were banned in 1983

When the Williams FW07D arrived for F1 testing in 1982, it immediately outpaced its rivals.

The vehicle posed possible advantages over other teams due to its ability to speed off from a standing start with almost no wheelspin, and gain a competitive advantage during wet weather if dry tyres were used on the rear-most axle. 

It also offered a significant advantage due to its superior aerodynamics – but the project was ruined before the car could compete due to the FIA’s 1983 ban on six-wheelers and four-wheel drive. 

Mercedes G63 AMG 6×6

A conversion of the Mercedes G63 SUV, it stands an extra 272mm (11in) taller than its four-wheel counterpart

A conversion of the Mercedes G63 SUV, it stands an extra 272mm (11in) taller than its four-wheel counterpart

Mercedes’ six-wheeler will certainly intimidate other drivers during the school drop-off – standing on six massive 37-inch wheels.

A conversion of the Mercedes G63 SUV, it stands an extra 272mm (11in) taller than its four-wheel counterpart and was officially unveiled in 2013.

It is designed to keep steady on even the roughest of terrain, with five different locks.

But it wasn’t cheap, with prices starting from £350,000 and over. 

Panther 6

Just two Panther 6 cars ever made it through the production line after its launch in 1977, probably due to its cost

Just two Panther 6 cars ever made it through the production line after its launch in 1977, probably due to its cost

Luxury car company Panther introduced their own six-wheel model in 1977, designed to be a chic, open-top, two-seat cruiser.

But despite its bold looks and claimed 15 orders at its 1977 London Motorfair launch, only two were ever made.

It may have been related to the £39,950 price tag, which in the late seventies made it 50 per cent dearer than a Ferrari 512BB.

Dodge T-Rex

The Technology Research EXperimental vehicle boasted six wheels, a 2.6m load bed and a Ram pick-up cab

The Technology Research EXperimental vehicle boasted six wheels, a 2.6m load bed and a Ram pick-up cab

The Dodge T-Rex was used as a test vehicle by the American manufacturer and lived up to its name by easily devouring any terrain that was put it front of it.

The Technology Research EXperimental vehicle boasted six wheels, a 2.6-metre flat bed and a Ram pick-up cab.

The model was never produced for the commercial market, but is still a notable addition to the history of using six wheels. 

Hustler

The original Hustlers were sold directly from William Towns' home at Stretton-on-Fosse, Gloucestershire, as kits to be assembled at home

The original Hustlers were sold directly from William Towns’ home at Stretton-on-Fosse, Gloucestershire, as kits to be assembled at home

The Hustler, a brainchild of designer William Towns, resulted from a cancelled project with British car manufacturers Jensen Motors.

The vehicles stood out on the road due to their cuboid shape with large windows that gave drivers a near-360-degree view of the world around them.

In most models – not all of which had six wheels – people would get into the car using sliding windows as doors.

The original Hustlers were sold directly from William Towns’ home at Stretton-on-Fosse, Gloucestershire, as kits to be assembled at home.

Tyrrell P34

The Tyrrell P34 showed immediate promise on its debut in 1976 but was discontinued in 1977

The Tyrrell P34 showed immediate promise on its debut in 1976 but was discontinued in 1977

The second Formula 1 car in this list, the Tyrrell P34, pre-dated Williams’ version and caused a revolution when it emerged to race in the 1976 Spanish Grand Prix with two front axles. 

Designed in secret by Derek Gardner, Goodyear made the necessary 10-inch tyres which offered more grip and less drag than competitors.

By its fourth race the P34 scored a one-two win for the team, but the model ended in 1977 due to a lack of tyre development.

Citroën CX Loadrunner

The Citroën CX Loadrunner rose to fame in France and Belgium in the 1970s

The Citroën CX Loadrunner rose to fame in France and Belgium in the 1970s

This vehicle certainly stands out from other Citroën models due to its extraordinary length – it is little surprise it needs an extra set of wheels.

It rose to popularity in France and Belgium in the 1970s and continued to be seen into the 1980s.

The car was specially made to deliver newspapers overnight at high speeds, instead of relying on larger HGVs which took more time to travel the same distance. 

With the invention of computers and the internet the need for such vehicles rapidly dropped.

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