While this sounds like the kind of thing Matt Damon might use to outrun a group of baddies in the upcoming Bourne movie, the Quadski is far from a revolutionary new vehicle. Developed and officially launched in 2012 by sports vehicle company Gibbs, the Quadski was prototyped nearly a decade ago — it just didn’t gain widespread use. Though it initially began as just a one rider vehicle, Gibbs has since produced the Quadski XL —the kind the SFPD now owns— which has the capability to seat two riders comfortably.
Today’s model (which retails for around $50k) drives at roughly 45-50 miles per hour on land or water, and also utilizes a proprietary marine jet propulsion system while in jet ski form. When transitioning from land to water, riders simply press a button which retracts the vehicle’s wheels into the body of the Quadski, and separates them from the drive train in a mere matter of seconds. The video above shows how quickly a rider can switch to the Quadski’s jet ski form and, more importantly, showcases just how much damn fun it would be to own one of these.
Before you start to wonder why the SFPD spent hard-earned tax payer money to buy a fleet of seemingly unneeded Quadskis, it’s worth noting each of these $50k beasts were donated to the police by Salesforce CEO Mark Benioff. After deliberating on the donation back in October of 2014, the SFPD finally deemed it acceptable to break out this unique vehicle, though it’s unknown if it’ll strictly be used to police those vying for home run balls in McCovey Cove.
Regardless of its intended use, the vehicle certainly enjoyed somewhat of a spotlight over the weekend causing those attending and reporting on the baseball games to give their own unique spins on what exactly it was the officer was riding. From people suggesting it was a vehicle reminiscent of something Batman or James Bond would ride, to those simply drooling at the prospect of owning one, the Quadski became an instant hit in San Francisco and across the country.
Whether a Quadski seems a better fit for a Hollywood action flick or not one thing is abundantly clear, we’re incredibly jealous of the SFPD and especially the guy lucky enough to use a Quadski as his patrol vehicle.