Celebrate BTTF Day With Even More Retro-futurism


As you might have noticed if you’ve been online at all today, it’s Back to the Future day! October 21, 2015 is the day that Doc Brown and Marty McFly zip to in their trash-powered time machine, where they’re blown away by the 1985 vision of what 2015 will look, feel, and sound like. After today, all of the BTTF movies will take place in the past, making the movie trilogy, perhaps, the most popular example of retro-futurism today (if not ever). The most popular, but not the only.

Meet Steven Johnson, an author and inventor of a number of “advanced” automotive concepts that absolutely stink of retro-futurism in the absolute best way. His work spans more than four decades, and he’s recently compiled it all into a new book, titled, “Patent Depending: Vehicles,” that rounds up all forty-plus years of his outside-the-box thinking.

Like, way outside.

What blows my mind, honestly, is how similar some of these retro-futurism concepts are to current and upcoming products. The Verticar, for example, operates a lot like GM’s EN-V electric, which goes vertical for close-quarters city driving and “lays down” at higher speeds. The Saunacycle, too, looks an awful lot like a Scooter Skirt, to me. Take a look at a few of the “samples”, below, then let us know what you think of Johnson’s take on the cars of tomorrow in the comments section at the bottom of the page. Enjoy!


A Few Sample Patent Pending Vehicles







Source | Images: Steven M. Johnson, via Core 77.

Jo Borrás

I've been in the auto industry 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the IM network. You can also find me on Twitter, at my Volvo fansite, out on two wheels, or chasing my kids around Oak Park, IL.