June 2, 2006 Alan Gibb's Aquada and Humdinga high speed amphibious vehicles have been making the headlines for the last few years, partly because they work, partly because they have compelling feature sets and partly because the Aquada has set a few records, most notably in the hands of Sir Richard Branson. Now there's a new affordable Gibbs amphibian on the way that instantly becomes one of the most desirable recreational vehicles on the planet - it's both a quadbike and a jet ski and converts from one guise to the other at the touch of a button in under five seconds, using the 140 bhp motor to reach 50 mph (72km/h) on both land and water. The design offers a new class of recreational vehicle, along with a range of capabilities that make it ideal for life saving clubs, search and rescue, military, emergency services and aid workers who will be able to reach areas and people no two or four wheel drive vehicle could reach. Gibbs Technologies intends to license the design and technology for the Quadski and is seeking expressions of interest.
Gibbs Technologies originated in New Zealand (the home of another amphibious vehicle manufacturer, SeaLegs) but has taken the technology and his company to the United kingdom. Quadski shares the same Gibbs' patented High Speed Amphibian (HSA) technology with the recently launched Aquada - the amphibian car which set the water speed record for amphibian craft, as well as the world record for crossing the English Channel - and the Humdinga, a five-seater, four-wheel drive vehicle capable of travelling up to 80 mph (130 kph) on land and 45 mph (70 kph) on water. Quadski is powered by a 140 BHP petrol driven engine, which provides drive to the wheels on land and a marine jet pump on water. It is capable of travelling at 50 mph (72 km/h) on both land and water and the transition from one medium to the other takes less than five seconds. On entering water, the wheels are retracted into the body of the vehicle at the flick of a switch. Quadski's fuel tank allows it to travel for up to two hours on water and has a land range of 600 kilometres. Mr Gibbs said the Quadski fills a "vital gap" for farmers and other outdoor workers who need amphibious flexibility in their transportation, adding that it would also "delight off-road enthusiasts who refuse to stop at the water's edge." Commenting on the launch of the Quadski prototype, Alan Gibbs, the founder of UK based Gibbs Technologies Ltd. said, ""I know consumers will love the fun of driving a Quadski on land one minute and then head straight into the sea or river the next. But there is a very serious side to Quadski as well: emergency services and aid workers will be able to reach areas and people no two or four wheel drive vehicle could reach." Gizmag has covered a wide array of amphibious vehicles over the last few years.View gallery - 7 images