Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance Detective Comics #110 (April 1946)
In story information
Type Vehicle
Element of stories featuring Batman

The Batboat, Batstrike, or Batsub is the fictional personal aqua-dynamic hydrofoil/submersible watercraft of the DC Comics superhero Batman.

Batboat variants


The Batskiboat[1][2][3] (or Bat Skiboat) is a darker version of the Batboat. In the 1992 live-action film Batman Returns.[4] Batman uses the jet-powered hydrofoil near the climax of the film to travel through Gotham's sewer system towards the Penguin's lair.

The Batskiboat's[5] design has elements from the film's Batmobile and the figure of a shark. It is a single-seater and has the same extras as the Batmobile, including torpedo launchers. It also has a radar, which can be used by Batman to monitor each area of Gotham City.

Two Batskiboats were manufactured for Batman Returns: a full-size version 7.6 meters long and 4.9 meters wide, and a model 1.8 meters long and 1.2 meters wide.


The Batstrike[6] is a neutral-buoyancy undersea scooter. The Batstrike carries submerged speeds in excess of 5 knots.


The Bat-Submersible (or "Batsub") made its debut in May 1949 in Detective Comics #147. Batman and Robin employed the Bat-Sub in order to net Tiger Shark.

The Batsub[7] (or Bat-Sub) is another fictional watercraft along with the Batboat used by the comic superhero Batman for alternative transportation purposes. In the 1995 film Batman Forever, a version of the Batwing is shown to have a cockpit that can transform into a submersible vehicle should the air vehicle be shot down.[8] This mini submarine does not have armament and is only equipped with a search headlight.

Environment systems[9] include CO2-scrubbers and air-conditioning units in the Bat-Submersible's stern. Oxygen tanks provide up to six hours of breathable air. There are also emergency tanks that allow an added twelve hours of life-support. The life-support includes oxygen/helium mixes for deep-water submersion.

Publication history

In Sub-Level 6 of the Batcave, there's an aqua-dynamic hydrofoil/submersible (otherwise known as the Batboat) on both the navigable Gotham River and the Atlantic Ocean's waters.


Early in his career, while investigating arms dealers operating along the wharves of Gotham City's Chinatown district, Batman used a prototype Batboat to pursue the fleeing criminals. In what was later regarded as an "extreme measure", Batman destroyed their launch with a bow-mounted flame-thrower.

The first official Batboat made its debut in April 1946 (in Detective Comics #110). The storyline involved Scotland Yard providing Batman and Robin with the boat in order to speed their search for the villainous Professor Moriarty.


To submerge, the Batboat's foils retract to reduce parasitic drag. Its aluminum propellers are driven by sealed AH electrolyte batteries.


The Batboat displays include state-of-the-art 'at-a-glance' navigation and communication links, an ascent-rate alarm, a dive-time clock, and a safe-ceiling depth meter.

Offensive weapons

Batboat armaments include a pneumatic harpoon with a high-tensile titanium cable, a launching grapnel that doubles as an anchor, variable-setting depth charges, and a small supply of active-homing torpedoes with heat/motion/vibration target-acquisition specifically designed to target a vehicle's propulsion systems while minimizing damage to its hull.

Television and film

1960s Batman

The Batboat from Batman (1966).[10]

The first appearance of the Batboat was in the 1966 film Batman. It was subsequently used in seasons two and three of the 1960s Batman television series. It was created by Glastron Industries. Since Glastron was based in Austin, Texas, the world premiere of the 1966 "Batman" movie was also held there.

Mel Whitley and Robert Hammond designed the Batboat from a Glastron V-174. They added a red flashing beacon, glowing eyes, batzooka hatches, seats for both Batman and Robin at the front of the boat, twin wind screens, a center console, an outdrive jet cover, and an aft to deck cover with a glowing Bat-Signal on the tail fin. Although the boat was powered by a Merc Cruiser L-6 stern drive and Attwood Corporation manufactured the hardwire, a water squirter and a jet nozzle were added to make the Batboat look like it was nuclear-powered. It took 31 days to build.

Eventually, a replica was built of the Batboat. When the Batman television show was cancelled, Glastron used the two Batboats for promotions on tours. After much touring, the boats were sold. One boat went to a Glastron dealer who was a Shriner. He used it in various Shriner parades. This Batboat was then moved to the Car Stars museum in Gatlinburg, Tennessee.

Batman: The Animated Series

The Batboat was also featured in Batman: The Animated Series. It could also be used as a submarine.

Batman Returns

A darker version was used in Batman Returns as The Bat Skiboat.[4] Batman uses the vehicle near the climax of the film to travel through Gotham's sewer system towards the Penguin's lair.

Batman Forever

A second Batboat appears in the film Batman Forever,[11] piloted by Robin, and is quickly destroyed by The Riddler and Two-Face. In the same film, a version of the Batwing is shown to have a cockpit that can transform into a submersible vehicle should the air vehicle be shot down. The Batboat (a jet-powered cigarette boat) from Batman Forever fit within the film's H. R. Giger-inspired biomechanical theme.

The Batman

The Batboat is also used in The Batman. This one has similarity to the Batskiboat but it has black and blue color. This version somehow gives this boat the appearance that it is hovering over the water rather than touching it. It holds three people and is equipped with an on-board computer which can be activated from his belt. It has submersible capabilities like in Batman: The Animated Series. In "The Icy Depth", when trapped in ice it can generate enough heat to break through the ice.

Batman Beyond

A submarine appeared in the episode "Earth Mover" in Batman Beyond. It was used by Terry McGinnis, the new Batman, to navigate Gotham city's underground rivers.

Superman/Batman: Apocalypse

The Bat Skiboat makes an appearance early in Superman/Batman: Apocalypse.

Lego Batman: The Movie - DC Super Heroes Unite

The Batboat makes an appearance in Lego Batman: The Movie - DC Super Heroes Unite.

Video games


In the 1986 computer game Batman, the player has to collect seven pieces of the Batcraft, a hovercraft-type vehicle, from the depths of the Batcave in order to complete the game.[12][13]

Lego Batman: The Video Game

The Batboat is one of the playable vehicles Lego Batman: The Video Game. In the game, it has the abilities to shoot, throw rope, and jump with more force on ramps.

Batman: Arkham City

The Batboat is mentioned in Batman: Arkham City as being used by Batman to attempt to stop Joker's escape from Arkham Asylum, that took place before the events of Arkham City. In the tie-in comic, it's shown Batman has multiple (at least three) Batboats.

Lego Batman

A hovercraft version of the Batboat is featured in the Lego Batman building toy set 7780 Batboat: the Hunt for Killer Croc.


  1. "Movies - Batman Returns - Gadgets - Batskiboat". Retrieved 2010-09-16.
  2. Tommy M. "Tombo'z Lego Builds - The Batskiboat (Batboat) from the 1992 movie Batman Returns". Retrieved 2010-09-16.
  3. "Bat Ski Boat from "Batman Returns" (1992)". Retrieved 2010-09-16.
  4. 1 2 "Batman Returns - Vehicles". Retrieved 2010-09-16.
  5. Archived from the original on January 3, 2008. Retrieved January 10, 2008. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  6. "Character Profiles - Gadgets - Batstrike". Retrieved 2010-09-16.
  7. "Weapons and Vehicles". Retrieved 2010-09-16.
  8. "Batwing". Archived from the original on 11 October 2010. Retrieved 2010-09-16.
  9. "Character Profiles - Gadgets - Batboat". Retrieved 2010-09-16.
  10. "Batman Television". Retrieved 2010-09-16.
  11. "Batman Forever - Vehicles". Archived from the original on 11 October 2010. Retrieved 2010-09-16.

External links

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