In the world of Grand Theft Auto III, vehicles with speed, durability, and style reign supreme. With various cars, boats, and other modes of transportation at your disposal, the choices can be overwhelming. Whether you’re completing missions or just cruising through Liberty City, the right vehicle can make all the difference. From the fast and agile Banshee to the rugged and versatile Patriot, each vehicle offers its own advantages and drawbacks that can significantly impact how to fare in the game — and more importantly, how much fun you have.
If you’ve ever found yourself hijacking the first car that comes your way, only to wish you’d held out for something better, this article is for you. We’ll delve into the nitty-gritty details of the best vehicles in Grand Theft Auto III (both regular and Definitive Edition), analyzing everything from top speeds to unique features. By the end of this guide, you’ll know exactly which vehicles you’ll want, and where to find them.
The Infernus in GTA III is a high-speed sports car that turns heads as it zooms through Liberty City. Inspired by real-life luxury models like the Jaguar XJR-15 and the Vector M12, this car’s sleek design is matched only by its incredible top speed of 149 mph. Not many cars in the game come even close to the maximum speed of the Infernus. In fact, this rear-wheel drive sports car happens to be the fastest car in the game.
It’s not just a show-off vehicle. It’s also a must-have for the Import/Export side mission in Shoreside Vale. The Infernus comes with a steep price tag of $95,000 in the game. If you aren’t able to spot one on the streets of Staunton Island and Shoreside Vale, head down to the parking lots of Francis International Airport and Liberty City Memorial Stadium. There you might be able to score one for your collection.
The Cheetah in GTA III is another sports car that is excellent for speedy getaways. With a design inspired by the classic Ferrari F512 M Testarossa, the Cheetah packs a punch with a top speed of around 143 mph. Again, thanks to its speed and good handling, it is a great choice for both missions and high-speed chases around Liberty City.
You can usually find this high-performance car parked at the Cartel Mansion in Cedar Grove or at the Francis International Airport parking lot. It has even more value than the Infernus at $105,000.
One of the most iconic of the GTA III cars, the Banshee is a sports car that draws its design inspiration from several real-world cars. It shares some aspects of the Dodge Viper and the Pontiac Firebird. It has a top speed of 124 mph, which while not the fastest, will get you from place A to B faster than most cars.
Spawn locations for the Banshee include areas like Staunton Island and Shoreside Vale, as well as specific locations such as Capital Autos in Hartwood and Kenji’s Casino in Torrington. Notable in-game characters like Catalina and Salvatore Leone have been seen owning this car, and it makes appearances in story missions, too.
The Patriot is a robust SUV, inspired by the real-life Hummer H1. With its top speed of 105.63 mph, it is not as fast as the sports cars we’ve mentioned. However, what it lacks in speed, it has in ruggedness. It can be found spawning next to the Supa Save! in Portland View and the Newport Multistory Car Park. If you are looking for a vehicle that can take it off-road and handle most collisions, you might want the Patriot.
The Patriot is a staple among GTA vehicles with appearances in various GTA games, including the latest Grand Theft Auto V.
This specific version of the Stallion is a gang vehicle associated with the Diablos. Its design takes cues from classic American muscle cars like the Oldsmobile Cutlass. With a top speed of 112 mph, it is not the fastest car, but it is as stylish as it gets. Find it, and you’ll be rolling down the streets of Liberty City in a beefed-up Stallion with a flame paint job.
In terms of monetary value, the Diablo Stallion is priced at $45,000 in the game. You’ll mostly find it cruising around in Hepburn Heights on Diablo Gang turf or spawning in north-eastern Harwood on Portland Island. Not surprisingly, the vehicle is also featured in gang-related story missions.
The Cartel Cruiser is an SUV, and another gang vehicle, in GTA III mostly associated with the Colombian Cartel gang. It is styled after real-life vehicles like the Chevrolet Suburban and the Ford F-150 and has a top speed of 109 mph. In the game, it’s valued at $50,000.
You can find the Cartel Cruiser in various locations throughout Liberty City, including the construction site in Fort Staunton on Staunton Island and the Cartel mansion in Cedar Grove, Shoreside Vale. This vehicle is featured in numerous story missions, making it a staple for anyone interested in the underground business of Liberty City.
Looking for style and not so much practicality? Well, the Stretch is definitely your car. The limousine version of the Sentinel can get up to 111 mph, but realistically you aren’t looking for speed and definitely not handling with this gem. It’s one of the classic cars that appears in various Grand Theft Auto games, and GTA III is no different.
If you are looking to add one to your collection, head down to Staunton Island and Shoreside Vale, and you might spot one on the streets. Gang members, the Mafia family, and important characters like Donald Love and Luigi Goterelli drive it.
The Ambulance in GTA III is one of the emergency vehicles you can encounter, often found near hospitals. Unlike typical cars in the game, the Ambulance serves a specific utility, allowing players to engage in the Paramedic side mission to save injured citizens. The reward for the mission is money and depending on how well they perform, health pickups or adrenaline pickups at all safehouses, or even an infinite sprint for the character.
While it is fairly fast at 118 mph, what makes it stand out are the sirens and flashing lights. One problem with this iconic vehicle is that you cannot sell it for quick cash. However, it is built like a tank. Well, not literally like a tank, but you get the picture. Speaking of tanks…
The Rhino Tank in GTA III is the embodiment of destruction on wheels. It is typically available later in the game or when you’ve amassed a significant number of wanted stars. As the game’s sole military vehicle, it comes with a turret that fires explosive rounds, effectively demolishing cars, helicopters, and pretty much any obstacle in your path. Unlike other vehicles, the Rhino Tank can withstand massive amounts of damage, making it pretty much indestructible.
Though you can’t purchase the Rhino Tank, it can often be found at military bases or summoned using cheat codes. Don’t expect to get away from anyone, though. With a sluggish 50 mph speed, you are likely going to be among the slowest on the roads.
Another emergency vehicle, the Firetruck, has some interesting specialty features. It features lights and sirens to inform the citizens of Liberty City about an incoming emergency vehicle. Additionally, players can engage in the Firefighter side mission. In the mission, players utilize the truck’s water cannon to extinguish burning cars. If the player manages to successfully complete the side mission, they are rewarded a Flamethrower, found at each hideout.
In addition to this, the vehicle is excellent at ramming through vehicles, roadblocks, and everything else, thanks to its heft and durability. After it gains momentum with its max speed of 106 mph, it’s hard to stop.
The Police Car in GTA III is a staple of Liberty City and an ever-present reminder of law enforcement presence. This car is one of the easier ones to find. After all, police patrol the streets everywhere in the city. Accumulate enough wanted stars and you don’t even have to find them, they’ll come to you. However, it’s the actual acquisition of the vehicle that is the hard part.
The Police Car is a well-balanced vehicle with a maximum speed of 124 mph and good durability. The car is based on real cars, like Chevrolet Caprice and Ford Crown Victoria, classics of many police departments.
The Speeder is the go-to choice for water travel. It offers a sleek speed boat design and impressive speed for zipping around Liberty City. You might see the boat traveling on the waters. However, the best way to get it might be to head down to the pier near Asuka Kasen’s Condo or at Francis International Airport. This is also one of the more expensive vehicles in the game, with a value of $90,000.
It is as fast as the police speed boat, Predator, and its more exclusive Ghost variant at 118 mph. If you are looking for ways to avoid congested streets or police roadblocks on the bridges, this is the way to go!
While perhaps not as famous as the extinct birds, the Dodo in GTA III is technically able to fly. Officially the game’s developers never intended for it to be fully operational. The small plane is reminiscent of real-life Cessnas. The Dodo is most commonly found at Francis International Airport in Shoreside Vale. Needless to say, this vehicle is more about the experience than convenience or practicality.
Keeping it in the air for more than 10 seconds might require planning and good control. Find a high enough take-off spot, and maybe you can double that. However, remember that it can be also driven around and has a top speed of 124 mph.
- FBI Car: The all-black FBI Car can be accessed when the player has gained a 5-star wanted level.
- Borgnine Taxi: The modified, red Cabbie with bloody spikes on the bumpers. It is named after Ernest Borgnine, who played the Cabbie in the movie Escape from New York.
- Securicar: A security vehicle that has massive weight and can ram through almost anything.
- Trashmaster: If you are either looking to collect trash in the neighborhood or ramming into things, this might be one of the better choices.
- Linerunner: A truck cab based on the all-American classic Kenworth W900L. Can be found in many GTA games.
- RC Car: A toy car that is accessible in a side mission by entering a TOYZ van. Players use the RC cars to destroy gang vehicles with explosives.