Amphibious Motorhome Created in SC Looks Like Outrageous Fun

As outrageous motorhomes go, it would hard to beat the Terra Wind.

That's because this luxury RV can not only barrel down the interstate at speeds up to 80 miles an hour, but chug through a lake at 7 knots.

Yes, it floats.

Cool Amphibious Manufacturers International of Ridgeland, S.C., created the amphibious RV a decade ago, but is still looking for sales. Owner John Giljam says he has had some interest from potential buyers now that the economy is strong.

At $850,000 for a Terra Wind, buyers haven't exactly lined up.

It some ways, it's a typical RV with comfortable furnishings and a modern kitchen complete with a trash compactor, full-size refrigerator and side-by-side washer and dryer.

But its marine heritage is omnipresent, from the heavy-weight, military-grade aluminum hull below the water line to its high-end fiberglass shell above deck and the polished teak cabinetry in the interior.

The 32,000-pound behemoth, fully loaded, shifts its power from the wheels to a pair of 19-inch bronze propellers when it takes to water. The Terra Wind is meant for fresh water -- quiet lakes and streams -- not the ocean. For extra stability, there's a pair of pontoons on either side.

So how did Giljam come up with the idea of a floating RV?

"Our business is amphibious vehicles," he said. "I wanted to build an RV as well, so I thought, why not make it float?"

"We just wanted to be able to go out on the water any time we wanted. It's been a whole lot of fun!"

You never know what might float your boat.

© Gannett Co., Inc. 2017. All Rights Reserved


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