The WaterCar is a fiberglass amphibious vehicle
styled after the 2002 Convertible Camaro body style. It is powered by a
Subaru 2.5 Turbo WRX motor. The transmission is a Rancho Type I-4 speed
manual transmission. The four wheel independent suspension and brakes
are late model C-4 Corvette with stainless steel rotors.
The WaterCar can reach speeds in excess of 125 MPH on land and the
drivability with the Corvette suspension is outstanding. Once the
WaterCars is driven into the water all four wheels are hydraulically
retracted with the flip of a switch. The bottom covers that enclose the
wheel well are also hydraulically extended to create a smooth high speed
bottom which allows the WaterCar to easily hit speeds of 40 MPH on the
water. The Marine Drive is a Berkeley 12JE Jet Drive with a place
diverter to control the ride depending on water conditions. The WaterCar
has four usable seats and the doors are fully functional.
Designed by Dave March who previously was not only owner of a collision
repair business but also a high performance car and boat enthusiast.
Dave got involved with amphibious cars after he retired, together with
his son they purchased a 1964 Amphicar. The Amphicar was a great idea at
the time but never had much success in sales. It was often reported that
the Amphicar drove like a boat on land and had poorer performance in the
March threw himself into researching every amphibious vehicle in the
world and discovered that amphibious vehicles are much more popular in
Europe. To his astonishment, he realized that of all the vehicles
ever built, no one had successfully built a true high performance
That's when it hit him - why not combine his love of high performance
cars and boats into a single, high performance amphibious car? By using
many of the shelf parts for performance cars from hot rod shops, he
managed to do what many people would think impossible and he built his
own car. Better than that his car would not only float but perform
brilliantly in the water, even leaving a few speed boats behind.
March wanted to build a four-seater, yet still keep the car sporty
looking. The 2002 Camaro was the ideal starting point. He purchased a
Camaro fiberglass funny-car shell body, added hundreds of labor hours
and he had a great looking Camaro car/boat plug. He built the molds from
the plug and proceeded to build the first parts.
March built a lightweight stainless frame to mount the suspension and
motor to and fit it to the body. In order to get good performance in the
water he made the wheels retract up into the body using hydraulics from
a low-rider car. Other challenges of building the car including
squeezing the flat four motor and marine jets into the rear trunk area
and getting the doors to hold the water at bay by using an aircraft
style lock to achieve a water tight seal.
The WaterCar got a lot of attention when it was finished not only from
passes by who saw a brand new car drive straight into water, but also
from several media publications. So much was everyone's desire for the WaterCar, March decided to start producing the WaterCar in limited