DETROIT — Well, this makes sense. Fresh from its appearance at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, the world’s first high-speed amphibious vehicle, the Gibbs Quadski, will make its marine-show debut at the Detroit Boat Show Feb. 16-24 at Cobo Center.
Built at a 54,000-square-foot assembly plant in Auburn Hills, the high speed amphibian has a durable but lightweight composite hull, using proprietary water jet technology for propulsion on the water. It’s powered by a K1300 BMW Motorrad engine and transmission.
The Quadski transitions from land to water in less than five seconds and reaches planing speeds in seconds. The new sports amphibian weighs 1,300 pounds, is equipped with a 15-gallon fuel tank and retails for about $40,000.
Currently available in five colors – red, yellow, blue, silver and black – the Gibbs Quadski already is on sale at two dealerships in Florida and soon will be available at dealership locations in Michigan, New York, Texas and elsewhere in the Midwest and southeastern United States.
Quadski has a unique retractable suspension system that provides superb ride-and handling on land and retracts in seconds after entering water. The new HSA’s four-cylinder, water-cooled engine is considered the lightest powerplant in its segment and features electronic fuel injection, a double-overhead camshaft and dry-sump lubrication.
Designed to meet applicable state and federal safety regulations, the Quadski is 10.5 feet in overall length; 5.2 feet in width, and 4.3 feet in height with a wheelbase of 5.8 feet.
The dream of two visionary entrepreneurs — Alan Gibbs and Neil Jenkins — the Quadski is the product of millions of research dollars and years of development work in the U.S., New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
“Quadski represents an entirely new form of transportation,” Gibbs said. “It is the only sports amphibian in the world capable of reaching speeds of 45 miles per hour on both land and water and can transition between both in less than five seconds.”
Gibbs said his companies have more than 300 patents and patents pending on Gibbs High Speed Amphibian technology, representing an investment of more $200-million and two-million man hours of work.
“Bringing Quadski to market has been a long uphill battle, but clearly worth the effort,” adds Gibbs Chairman Neil Jenkins. “Quadski is making its public debut at major marine and powersports shows in the United States this year and will pave the way for a host of other Gibbs amphibians designed for consumers, sports enthusiasts, law enforcement agencies and first responders in years to come.”
“Boaters and powersports enthusiasts will like the Quadski’s versatility and Gibbs’ innovative high-speed-amphibian technology,” said Boat Show Manager Nicki Polan. “It will definitely be something show-goers will want to check out and we’re especially proud of the fact that it’s manufactured in Michigan.”
Gibbs Sports Amphibians will feature the new HSA at Booth 265 at the boat show. This year’s show will occupy two halls featuring hundreds of boats for fishing, skiing and cruising at the newly renovated Cobo Center. A variety of boating accessories and services, including water toys, ski gear, electronics, nautical gifts and artwork also will be on display at the show.
Quadski attracted crowds last month at the North American International Auto Show (Jan.19-27) in Detroit and also will be an attraction at this month’s 2013 Miami International Boat Show and the 2013 Miami Yacht and Brokerage Show (both held Feb. 14-18).
Gibbs and Jenkins have two companies — Gibbs Sports Amphibians Inc., which designs and manufactures consumer sports amphibians such as the Quadski, and Gibbs Amphitrucks Inc., which builds commercial amphibians for first responder and military applications. Based in Auburn Hills, Gibbs currently has more than 100 employees.
More information about GIBBS and its HSA technology can be found at www.gibbssports.com.