16 December 2007

A Mustang Shelby GT500KR

NBC has finally pulled the lid off their new version of KITT, custom made for their new Knight Rider movie. A 540 horsepower black-with-gray stripes Ford Mustang Shelby GT500KR will serve as the highly specialized Knight Industries Three Thousand.

This will no doubt be a disappointment in the eyes of purists, hoping the series would stick with either a rebuilt Trans Am, or at least a GM-made car like the new Camaro and the Z06 Corvette. WorldCarFans readers had also been anticipating something fancier, like the Maybach Exelero, Nissan GT-R, or the Koenigsegg CCX.

Three versions of the car will be used in the show, including the everyday KITT Hero, the harder, better, faster, stronger KITT Attack, and the driverless KITT Remote. Nanotechnology will allow KITT to shape shift and change color on the fly, and KITT's supercomputer brain can hack into any computer and electrical system.

KITT will have the same artificial intelligence that made it, and the original Knight Rider, an icon of the 1980s. Unfortunately, William Daniels will no longer provide the voice of the vehicle. Instead, KITT will be voiced by comic actor Will Arnett. Not to dog Arnett, who was pretty funny in Arrested Development, he seems somewhat miscast in the role.

In the original Knight Rider, Michael Long is a police officer nearly killed by a gunshot wound ot the head. After being publically announced as killed, Long is given facial reconstructive surgery and renamed "Michael Knight" by reclusive billionaire philanthropist Wilton Knight. Wilton Knight runs an underground crime fighting organization, and brings in Michael as his new agent.

David "The Hoff" Hasselhoff, who played Michael Knight, will return as an elder version of his character. All My Children star Justin Bruening will play an ex-Army Ranger Mike Tracer, responsible for helping track down the feared-dead original KITT creator, Charles. Charles' daughter, Sarah Graiman, will be played by Deanna Russo, and Bruce Davison plays Charles. Sydney Tamiia Poitier, who you may recognize as the star of Quentin Tarantino's half of Grindhouse, plays an FBI agent helping Graiman and Tracer. Poitier is the daughter of legendary actor Sydney Poitier.

The two-hour movie is supposed to serve as a back-door pilot for a new Knight Rider series. If successful, and the Writers' strike ends, episodes of Knight Rider may be ready by the next fall season.

American network NBC will debut the new Knight Rider at 9pm ET on Sunday, February 17.

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