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In urban legends, haunted vehicles are also called Phantom Vehicles, described as driverless vehicles roaming around on their own or being cursed. Let’s dig into some scary but real haunted vehicles around the world.

#5 Abraham Lincoln’s Ghost Train

The 16th President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln was surrounded by odd occurrences and paranormal experiences all of his life.  His wife, Mary Todd Lincoln dabbled in spiritualism and believed in omens.

Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln portrait by George Peter

Lincoln’s death also held mystery. About two weeks before he was killed, Lincoln had a dream that foretold his death.  In the dream, he heard sobbing and followed it to the East Room where he saw soldiers guarding a body.  When Lincoln asked, “Who is dead in the White House?”, a solider answered, “The President.  He was killed by an assassin.”

Three days after relating his dream to his wife, Mary, and a few close friends, Lincoln was assassinated. 

An order was issued to use of the railroads from Washington to Springfield, Illinois for President’s last journey on a funeral train.

The funeral train would travel 1,654 miles along the same route Lincoln had taken as president-elect in 1861. The funeral train was called The Lincoln Special.

The Lincoln Special reached its destination of Springfield on May 3rd, 1865.  But, it apparently still runs the same route during the end of April each year.

The Engine Nashville that drew The Lincoln Special, President’s portrait can be seen at the front

Hundreds have reported seeing a ghost train traveling through the countryside with Abraham Lincoln’s casket aboard.  It has been rumored that clocks and watches stop running when the train passes by.

The air on the tracks becomes cool and sharp, while just off to the side, the air remains warm but still. Clouds cover the moon, and a ghostly headlight pierces the night.

Suddenly, with a rush of wind, the train passes by, noiselessly, as if running on a carpet. There are reports of skeletons dressed in blue, standing at attention by Lincoln’s flag-draped casket. 

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Flags and streamers attached to the training whip in the wind, but no sound is heard as the train fades from view

#4 JFK’s Limousine code-named SS-100-X

John F. Kennedy, the young and beloved president of America, was assassinated by former U.S. Marine Lee Harvey Oswald firing in ambush from a nearby school building, while the President’s fleet was on a movie.

Whether Oswald alone or a group or the CIA itself was behind the assassination of JFK is another murder mystery.

jfk last ride
JFK in SS100-X with his wife, on the day of his assassination

The vehicle that no one knew will be the last vehicle that JFK will be in, surprisingly serviced for eight more years in President’s fleet after the assassination.

It was painted black by incoming president Lyndon Johnson, who thought the original navy blue paint would be too reminiscent of the assassination. The SS100-X was also upgraded after JFK was killed for added safety measures.

In 1967 the presidential limo was replaced, but the 1961 Lincoln was kept in the fleet for less important duties, until it retired to the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, after which the Limo is rumored to be haunted.

1961 Lincoln SS-100X JFK last car jfk car Phantom Vehicle
1961 Lincoln SS-100X ( Model 74A ) at Henry Ford Museum

The rumors are that An apparition dressed in grey has been seen standing near the car, especially in late November. And interestingly president JFK also wore a grey suit the day he was assassinated.

Not much proof is there for the car to be a phantom vehicle since it possibly won’t leave the museum to create more rumor but JFK was indeed the greatest personality of American history, and his assassination still remains to be a mystery for many.

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#3 The Flying Terror – Pippo

Not just the roads, but the sky seems to be haunted too. One such flying Phantom Vehicle is named Pippo, a mysterious plane loaded with weaponry.

pippo potrait

During the German rule in Northern Italy (1943 – 45 ), The terror of Pippo was recognized by the distinctive “pip-pip” sound of its engines and was mostly heard at night, hence its name.

No one knew its allegiance, where it came from and what aircraft it was. But it would fly solo at night and open fire on anyone that came in between its way. People were so terrified of Pippo that no one dared to keep the lights turned on during the night time.

The elusive and unidentified plane was said to be strafing and bombing the landscape, other times performing reconnaissance.

It was also said that night intruder missions became an integral part of during that period, as an effort to destroy German attempts to reinforce ground troops, and Pippo could have been a part of the mission, but its unknown allegiance and mysterious behavior ruled out it being on night missions.

#2 Om Banna (Bullet Baba) Royal Enfield

Not only cars and planes, but motorcycles became phantom vehicles too. One such motorcycle, from India, can be witnessed which is now a shrine of the owner, Om Singh Rathore also known as Om Banna or Bullet Baba by the locals.

The incident took place On 2 December 1991, when Om Banna riding his motorcycle, a Royal Enfield Bullet G2 model on the state highway from the town of Bangdi to Chotila, in Pali, situated in state Rajasthan.

He lost control of his motorcycle and hit a tree killing the young man Om Banna while his motorcycle fell into a nearby ditch.

royal enfield bullet
A Royal Enfield Bullet 99 similar to Om Rathore’s Enfield Bullet G2

The morning after the accident, local police took the Enfield motorcycle to a nearby police station. The next day it was reported to have disappeared from the station and was found back at the site of the incident.

Police, once again, took the motorcycle, this time making sure that the motorcycle could not be started for a ride, emptying its fuel tank and putting it under lock and chain to prevent it riding to any other place.

Despite their efforts, the next morning it again disappeared and was found at the accident site.

Legend states that the motorcycle kept returning to the same ditch. It thwarted every attempt by police to keep it at the local police station; the motorcycle always returned to the same spot before dawn.

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Moreover, after the incident, people traveling through the highway reported seeing someone on the same motorcycles.

Later on, a few accidents happened on the same highway near the same ditch that Om died. But surprisingly the accident survivors reported being saved by a young man who came to rescue on his Enfield Bullet.

The news spread in the nearby villages and the Enfield Bullet was converted into a shrine that couldn’t be left the ditch, for the owner Om Singh Rathore.

om banna bullet
Original Om Rathore’s Bullet kept in a glass box, converted into a shrine

People say that if you are traveling through the same highway without stopping and worshiping the Bullet Baba, you might not reach your destination with all your body parts intact. The vehicles passing by, refrains from honking, as an offering to the ‘baba’.

#1 James Dean’s Porsche Spyder aka Little B*stard

James Dean, the Heath Ledger of his era, a talented young actor who’s promising career cut short with his tragic death due to a crash with much bigger Ford Tudor that turned left in front of him. He died due to his injuries by the crash.

30 Sep 1955, California, USA – James Dean at a gas station with his silver Porsche 550 Spyder he named Little Bastard, just hours before his fatal crash.

The haunting story begins with James Dean purchasing the Porsche 550 Spyder and a fellow actor, Alec Guinness (Obi-Wan Kenobi in the original Star Wars trilogy), predicting his fatal crash.

According to the legends, when James asked Alec what he thought of the car, Alec responded with: “If you get in that Porsche, you will be dead next week.”

Surprisingly Dean died exactly seven days later in the crash.

Mysterious haunting events started with the car’s possession by George Barris, the famed car builder who designed the Lincoln Futura-based Batmobile used in the 1960s TV show.

He bought the wrecked carcass of “Little Bastard” and soon after it slipped off its trailer and broke a mechanics leg.

Not long after Barris sold the engine and drive-train to Troy McHenry and William Eschrid. While the two were both racings against one another in cars that had parts from the “Little Bastard,” McHenry lost control and hit a tree, killing him instantly and Eschrid was seriously injured when his car suddenly locked up and rolled over while going into a turn.

Barris still had two tires from the 550 which were untouched in Dean’s accident. He sold them and not long after, both blew out simultaneously causing the new owner’s car to run off the road.

With the incidents happening, George decided to hide the car but later lend it to the National Safety Council. It was displayed all over the United States in order to raise motorists’ awareness about highway safety

However, the first exhibit didn’t go well as the garage that housed the car caught fire and burned to the ground. Mysteriously the car suffered virtually no damage from the fire.

The next exhibition at a local high school ended abruptly when the car fell off its display, injuring one of the students non fatally.

The Porsche Spyder mysteriously disappeared in 1960 while it was being transported from Miami, Florida, to Los Angeles, California. It was declared stolen, but the police were unable to tell exactly what happened to it and where it went. It hasn’t been seen out in the open since.

Now that you’ve read about Phantom Vehicles, you might also like Scary stories that will leave you your body shivering and then you might also love to read about the true story behind Amityville Horror House.

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