KITT (known also as Knight Industries Two Thousand/Knight Industries Three Thousand) is the short name of a fictional character on the adventure TV series Knight Rider. KITT is an artificial intelligence electronic computer installed in a highly advanced, very mobile, robot in the form of a 1982 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am.
In the television show's history, KITT was said to have been designed by the late Wilton Knight, a brilliant but eccentric billionaire and founder of the Foundation for Law and Government (FLAG), and its parent Knight Industries.
KITT's main cybernetic processor was first installed in a mainframe computer used by the United States government in Washington D.C.. However, Wilton saw better use for "him" in the Foundation's crime-fighting crusade and eventually the system was installed in the vehicle. KITT was in fact the second vehicle built by Knight Industries with artificial intelligence. His predecessor was KARR, the Knight Automated Roving Robot. KARR was programmed for self-preservation, but this proved to be dangerous to the Foundation's humanitarian interests. KARR was later deactivated and placed in storage while KITT was given to his new operator, Michael Knight (the new identity of Michael Long). KARR was later reactivated accidentally by thieves in the original episode "Trust Doesn't Rust", was thought destroyed, then reappeared in the episode "K.I.T.T. vs. K.A.R.R." and was destroyed by Michael and KITT.
KITT (Knight Industries Two Thousand)
Knight Industries Two Thousand
Knight Rider character
Original KITT on display at Universal Studios.
First appearance Knight of the Phoenix (Pt. 1)
Created by Glen A. Larson
Portrayed by Pontiac Firebird Trans Am
Voiced by William Daniels (uncredited)
KITT has special features such as Turbo Boost, which allows quick bursts of speed or jumping over obstacles, the ability to drive himself, a front mounted scan bar that, among other things, allowed KITT to "see," "molecular bonded shell" coated body panel armor coating which resisted conventional weapon fire as well as most artillery and explosive blasts although a strong direct hit could cause severe damage. A refit in the 1985 season included the addition of "Super Pursuit Mode" and a convertible top. The car's voice was supplied by actor William Daniels.
Some of KITT's features included the following:
* Computer AI - KITT is essentially an advanced supercomputer on wheels. The "brain" of KITT is the Knight 2000 microprocessor which is the center of a "self-aware" cybernetic logic module that allowed KITT to think, learn, communicate and interact with humans. He always had an ego that was easy to bruise and displayed a very sensitive personality. He also has an in-dash entertainment system that can play music and video, and run various computer programs including arcade games which Michael sometimes indulged in whenever KITT was driving. According to Episode 55, "Dead of Knight", KITT's reaction time is one nanosecond, and his "memory" capacity is 1,000 megabits. According to Episode 65, "Ten Wheel Trouble", KITT's future capacity is unlimited. KITT's serial number is AD227529, as mentioned in Episode 31, "Soul Survivor".
* Alpha Circuit - KITT's "Alpha Circuit" is mentioned quite a bit throughout the series. It is part of KITT's main control system which allows the CPU to drive the car. The time KARR spent submerged in water damaged his Alpha Circuit, which required KARR to have an operator to control his Turbo Boost function.
* Molecular Bonded Shell - KITT is armored with "Tri-Helical Plasteel 1000 MBS" (Molecular Bonded Shell) plating which protects him from almost all forms of conventional firearms and explosive devices. He could only be harmed by heavy artillery and rockets, and even then, the blast usually left most of his body intact and only damaged internal components. The shell protected every part of the car including the tires. KITT could even act as a shield for explosives by driving over bombs to cover then and suppress the blast. The shell also protected him from fire and electricity; however, it was vulnerable to some potent acids and at least one formula was made (with knowledge of the shell's chemical base) to completely neutralize it. The shell is actually a combination of three secret substances referred together as the "Knight Compound", developed by Wilton Knight who entrusted parts of the formula to three separate people. These individuals each only know two pieces of the formula, ensuring that any two of them could make more of the Knight Compound in an emergency situation and that no one person would be able to make it alone. The shell provided a frame tolerance of 223,000 lb (111.5 tons) and a front and rear axle suspension load of 57,000 lb (28.5 tons). In the pilot "Knight of the Phoenix", the shell is described as the panels of the car itself; in the later episodes, especially from season two onwards, the idea of the shell being applied to a base vehicle chemically is used.
* Pyroclastic Lamination - KITT is protected by a thermal-resistant coating that can withstand sustained temperatures of up to 800 degrees Fahrenheit (426 °C). First used in Episode 32, "Ring of Fire".
* Power System - KITT is powered by the Knight Industries turbojet with modified afterburners and a computer controlled 8-speed turbodrive transmission. Specifications 060 mph in 2 seconds, standing to quarter mile 4.286 seconds. Electromagnetic hyper-vacuum disc brakes: 14 foot braking distance (700 mph - 1120 km/h).
KITT instrumentation (3rd season).
* Turbo Boost - Used in most episodes, a series of rear mounted undercarriage rocket motors allows KITT to accelerate to incredible speeds in excess of 200 mph (322 km/h). When activated in combination with the Trajectory Guidance System and a pair of rocket motors mounted just behind the front tires that lifted the front of the car, KITT could jump 40 feet (12,2 m) into the air and pass over obstacles in the road. The system also allowed KITT added power whenever he had to maneuver heavy objects such as pushing a heavy boulder off a cliff, or pulling a large vehicle out of danger. The boosters could fire forward or backward.
* Voice (Anharmonic) Synthesizer - KITT's Voice Synthesizer allowed his logic module to speak and communicate. With it, KITT could also simulate other sounds. KITT's primary spoken language was English, however by accessing his language module, he could speak fluently in Spanish and French. The module can be adjusted giving KITT different accents such as in Episode 82, "Out of the Woods", where KITT uses a "New York City" accent and called Michael, "Micky". During the first season, KITT's "mouth" ("Voice Modulator") in the interior of the vehicle was a flashing red square. In episode 14 "Heart of Stone", this was changed to three sectioned vertical bars, as this design proved popular with fans as part of KARR. (KARR used a yellow display with an inner bar that expanded outward and two outer bars that expanded from both ends inward, whereas KITT's was red and all three bars expanded outward from the center, but with greater magnitude in the center bar.)
* Anamorphic Equalizer - KITT's most apparent feature was his front scan bar called the Anamorphic Equalizer. The device is a fiber-optic array of electronic eyes. The scanner could see in all visual wavelengths as well as X-Ray and infrared. Occasionally, the bar could pulse in different patterns and sweep rapidly or very slowly. The scanner is also KITT's most vulnerable area.
* Etymotic Equalizer - This system allowed KITT to hear sound. An array of audio sensors were threaded throughout his interior and exterior.
* Olfactory Sensor - KITT could "smell" via an atmospheric sampling device mounted in his front bumper.
* Microscanners - Microscanners are tiny audio and visual sensors embedded into the grooves of KITT's body. They allow for visual tracking and display of anything around the car.
* Cruise Modes - These are KITT's three drive modes:
o Normal Cruise - On "Normal", Michael has control of the car. In an emergency, KITT could still take over and activate Auto Cruise mode.
o Auto Cruise - In "Auto", KITT could drive himself utilizing an advanced Auto Collision Avoidance system.
o Pursuit - "Pursuit" is used during high-speed driving and is a combination of manual and computer assisted operation. KITT could respond to road conditions faster than Michael's reflexes could; however, Michael was technically in control of the vehicle and KITT helped guide certain maneuvers.
* Silent Mode - KITT could run silently. The feature dampened his engine noise and allow him to sneak around. First used in Episode 37, "White-Line Warriors".
* Grappling Hook and Winch - KITT has a hidden winch and grappling hook system, one mounted under his front bumper, and another in a compartment behind his tail light plate. Most often the hook is connected by a strong cable, but a metal arm has also been seen. The grappling hook is first used in Episode 6, "Not a Drop to Drink"; the winch is first used in Episode 13, "Forget Me Not".
* Oil Jets/Smoke Screen - KITT could spray an oil slick and a plume of smoke from under the rear bumper. First used in Episode 1, "Knight of the Phoenix".
* Induction coil - KITT has an induction coil he can produce from under his front bumper and that, being placed on a metal object, can be used by KITT to induce electrical voltage or current in that object. This was used by Michael in "Knight of the Drones (Part I)" to electrify a fence in order to incapacitate and interrogate two thugs without seriously harming them.
* Flame Thrower - KITT has flame throwers mounted under his bumpers. First used in Episode 2, "Deadly Maneuvers".
* Tear Gas Launcher - KITT can dispense a cloud of tear gas along with his smoke screen. First used in Episode 13, "Hearts of Stone".
* Ultramagnesium Charges - KITT can launch magnesium flares, which can also be used to divert heat-seeking missiles fired at him. First used in Episode 26, "Merchants of Death".
* High Traction Drop Downs - When activated, the HTDD system hydraulically raises KITT's chassis for better traction when driving off-road. First used in Episode 39, "Speed Demons".
* Telephone Comlink - Michael could contact home base and communicate with Devon and others using KITT's video display.
* Microwave Jammer - KITT has an electronic jamming system that played havoc on electrical systems. The three main components are the Electromagnetic Field Generator, Electronic Field Disrupter and Microwave Ignition Sensor. The system could take control of electronic machines, allowing things like cheating at slot machines, breaking electronic locks, fouling security cameras, and withdrawing money from ATMs.
* Surveillance Mode - Surveillance Mode did several things:
o KITT could detect people and vehicles and track their movements and discern proximity.
o KITT could gather structural schematics of buildings, vehicles, or other devices and help Michael avoid potential danger when he was snooping.
o KITT could also monitor radio transmissions and telephone communications within a location and trace those calls.
o KITT could tap into computer systems to monitor, or upload and download information as long as he could break the access codes.
* Infrared Tracking Scope - KITT could monitor the position of specific vehicles in the area within 10 miles.
* Laser Powerpack - KITT can fire a high powered ultra-frequency modulated laser capable of burning through steel plating. Like most of KITT's components, the schematics for the laser device are classified. First used in Episode 24, "Goliath (Pt. 2)".
* Bomb Sniffer - KITT is equipped with a bomb sniffer module that can detect explosives within a few yards of the vehicle. First used in Episode 25, "Brother's Keeper".
* Medical scanner - KITT has a medical scanner that includes an electrocardiograph (ECG). The medical scanner can monitor the vital signs of individuals and display them on his monitors. It could indicate such conditions as if they were injured, poisoned, undergoing stress or other emotional behavior. KITT could even monitor Michael's physical activity through sensors inside the driver seat. First used in Episode 1, "Knight of the Phoenix (Pt. 2)".
* Deflatable Tires - KITT could deflate and reinflate his tires. First used in Episode 4, "Slammin' Sammy's Stunt Show Spectacular".
* Fuel Processor - KITT was powered by a turbine engine primarily fueled by hydrogen gas. However, his complex fuel processor allows him to run on any combustible liquid, even regular gasoline. KITT's actual fuel requirements and efficiency ratings were classified, however in one episode, KITT mentioned his fuel economy was at least 65 miles per gallon. However, when operating on fuels other than liquid hydrogen, KITT's fuel efficiency and power output may be lowered.
* Voice Stress Analyzer - KITT can process spoken voices and determine if someone may be lying. First used in Episode 26, "Merchants of Death".
* Seat Ejection System - KITT had two front ejection seats, mostly used when Michael needed a boost to fire escapes or building roof tops. First used in Episode 1, "Knight of the Phoenix (Pt. 1)".
* Passive Laser Restraint System - Added to KITT in later seasons, the restraint system helped protect Michael and any passengers from the shock of sudden impacts and hard stopping, especially after Super-Pursuit Mode. It is speculated that this is a primitive form of an inertial damping device. First used in Episode 47, "Knight of the Drones".
* Video Display Monitors - KITT had two CRT video display monitors on his dash for various readouts. They are controlled by two systems, the Graphic Translator (which sketches likenesses from verbal input) and the Anamorphic Equalizer (which gathered visual information from KITT's front scan bar) and microscanners. KITT only had one when his dash was redesigned for the show's third season.
* Computer Print Out - KITT could print hard copies of data on a dashboard-mounted printer. First used in Episode 15, "The Topaz Connection".
* Ultraphonic Chemical Analyzer - KITT has a retractable tray with an electron scanner that could analyze the chemical properties of various materials. It could even scan fingerprints and read ballistic information off bullets and compare these with a police database. Aside from the scanning tray, the system could also analyze chemical information gathered from KITT's exterior sensors. First used in Episode 17, "Chariot of Gold".
* Interior Oxygenator - KITT could release oxygen into his driver compartment and provide air to passengers if he was ever submerged in water or buried in earth. This is also used to overcome the effects of certain drugs. First used in Episode 4, "Slammin' Sammy's Stunt Show Spectacular".
* Two-Wheel Ski Drive - The Ski Mode setting allowed KITT to "ski" (driving up on two wheels). First used in Episode 1, "Knight of the Phoenix".
* Third Stage Aquatic Synthesizer - With this system, KITT can hydroplane, effectively "driving" on water, using his wheels and turbo system for propulsion. First used in Episode 28, "Return to Cadiz".
* Super-Pursuit Mode - KITT's Super-Pursuit mode was added at the start of the fourth season. It was the result of a redesign of the car to integrate new concepts consisting of improved rocket boosters for enhanced acceleration, retractable spoilers for aerodynamic stability, and movable air inlets for increased cooling. Super-Pursuit Mode provided a 40% boost in speed beyond the car's original top speed of 300 MPH. First used in Episode 70, "Knight of the Juggernaut, Part II".
* Emergency Braking System - The EBS slowed KITT down from Super-Pursuit speeds. It consisted of a forward braking booster and air panels that popped out to create air friction (air brakes). First used in Episode 70, "Knight of the Juggernaut, Part II".
* Convertible Roof - Added fourth season, by pressing the "C" button on KITT's dash, Michael could bring the top down and KITT became a convertible. First used in Episode #70, "Knight of the Juggernaut, Part II".
An unknown number of these systems were designed at Stanford University (Episode 5, "Just My Bill"). KITT's total production cost was estimated at $11,400,000 in 1982. The cost of subsequent equipment improvements and the installation of additional features since his activation have not been factored.
 Other equipment
* Comlink - KITT is in constant contact with Michael via a two-way communication wristwatch (a modified '80s LCD AM radio watch) Michael wore. The watch also had a micro camera and scanner that KITT could access to gather information.
* Homing Device - In dire emergency, Michael can activate a secret homing beacon hidden inside a gold pendant he wears around his neck. The beacon sends a priority signal that can remotely activate KITT and override his programming so that he rushes to Michael's aid. Only used in Episode 42, "A Good Knight's Work".
F.L.A.G. Mobile Unit with Aerodynamic Sleeping Cab
* F.L.A.G. Mobile Unit (The Semi) - KITT has access to a mobile "garage", sometimes referred to as "The Rook", which was a semi-trailer truck owned by the Foundation. In most episodes, it is a GMC General. The trailer has an extendable ramp that dropped down and allows KITT to drive inside even when the truck is in motion. The trailer was loaded with spare parts and equipment for KITT. It also had a computer lab where technicians Bonnie or April would work and conduct repairs and maintenance. In "Wrong Crowd" thieves hijack the truck thinking it to be hauling liquor. In the episode "Ten Wheel Trouble" it is used since one of the independents trucks was damaged on an assassination attempt on Michael, to take a shipment of onions. In the episode "Knight Moves" it is used as bait to catch a gang of truck hijackers. In "KITTnap" KITT is kidnapped and Michael and RC3 use the tractor (which has been disconnected from the trailer) to go and find him.
season 1 look [link]