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Cars You Didn’t Know Were in ‘Mafia’

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If you’ve ever wanted to play a video game that channels the energy and atmosphere of “The Godfather” but wraps the narrative in a chapter-based structure replete with flashbacks, it doesn’t get any better than 2002’s Mafia — or its 2020 remake. But, much like Francis Ford Coppola’s 1972 masterpiece, Mafia is a treasure trove of sick vintage rides. The difference here is, this time, you can actually drive most of them.

Many thanks to the eagle-eyed community of the IGCD for spotting these gems.

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1954 Chevrolet Corvette

A bright red 1954 Chevrolet Corvette.
Photo: Chad Horwedel via CC

I’ve long maintained the opinion that the Corvette has had an incredible, iconic design since day one, and the existence of the 1954 model only reinforces that argument. According to Car and Driver, Chevy “struggled to complete 300 largely hand-built ’53 Corvettes” during its first year. But the company rebounded with the ’54 model, reportedly pushing out as many as “50 Corvettes a day.”

The 1954 Corvette was a smash hit and more than lived up to its marketing slogan, “First of the dream cars to come true.” And thus began a legacy that would forever change the consumer-available supercar landscape. And probably offer conveyance to more than a few gangsters — some of whom must have been able to time travel, as Mafia takes place in the 1930s. But, hey, c’est la vie.

1930 GMC Model 6

A 1930 Yellow Coach taxi on display in a museum, sitting in far better condition than the one you drive in Mafia.
Photo: Klaus Nahr via CC

During Mafia’s early chapters, the main character — and bearer of one of the most gangstery names ever, Tommy Angelo — is a taxi driver in the fictional city of Lost Heaven. As such, you get to tool around town in a stunningly rendered facsimile of the 1930 GMC Model 6 as you listen to disgruntled passengers talk about largely frivolous topics, look for new fares, and occasionally need to outrun the cops at the behest of some trilby-wearing mobsters.

As it turns out, developer Hangar 13’s decision to include the GMC Model 6 wasn’t even remotely accidental. During the game’s time period, GMC held a majority of the interest in the Yellow Coach taxi company, which was based in Illinois — the same state in which Lost Heaven resides. So, were you able to visit the nonexistent city, odds are you’d see a lot of GMC-produced cabs.

This barely scratches the surface of the vintage vehicles available in Mafia. Plus, it doesn’t even touch on the fact that there are two more games in the series, the most recent of which is set just after the Vietnam War and almost certainly features some radical rides.

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