Knight Rider
Team Knight Rider
Episode 110: Oil & Water
Air Date 1 December, 1997
Written by Matthew Ball
Mark Greenhalgh
Director John Weidner
Episode guide
Episode 109: The Iron Maiden
Episode 111: Et Tu Dante

Exploding cars on the freeway lead the team to a sinister inventor bent on sabotaging the automotive industry.

Guest Cast

Husband........Steven Barr

Security Chief........Christal Chacon Wife........Jeanette Schwaba Guard........Charo Toledo Engineer........David Auram Goodman


Several cars mysteriously explode while driving down the highway. As the Team investigates, witnesses describe a high-pitched screech just before the explosions. During the investigation, Domino tells Jenny she wishes they could have more "girl talk"; Jenny tries, but to no avail. Trek examines fuel samples from the cars, and theorizes that the explosions were caused by additives in the gasoline. Jenny and Duke go to a gasoline distribution center and get a list of names of anyone who would have access to the fuel.

Kyle visits a scientist at a receiving station who analyzed a signal corresponding to the screeching noise heard before the car explosions. He is not very helpful; he had Kyle come up simply because he doesn't get many visitors.

Trek and Erica find the name of a chemist named Gage Weigert with a geat deal of money in his bank account. Kat intercepts some of Gage's email messages and learns that he is going to a club to see Courtney Bain, lead singer of the Mangled Kittens. Erica puts on a leather outfit to seduce Gage. She tells him she's a science groupie, and a big fan of his. She even has a web page dedicated to him and hopes that AOL will schedule an online chat session, because a lot of people want to know about the fortune he's making on the side with the fuel additive. When Gage hears this, he panics and leaves and makes a phone call. Plato traces the call to the residence of Otto Brookheimer in Malibu.

On the way back from Wadsworth Valley, Danté's systems start to fail and more cars begin to explode. Danté's fuel begins to boil. Kyle crashes through a beverage truck to dose Danté's engine and cool him. Trek analyzes the sound recorded by Danté's sensors before his system failure and learns that the frequency acts as a catalyst, causing the fuel additive to explode. Anything that uses gasoline is at risk.

Jenny and Erica crash a small party at Brookheimers estate. Much to Erica's disbelief, he takes an instant liking to Jenny. He begins to show her his artwork, created from car parts. Otto leaves Jenny when he sees Domino and offers to buy the car from Jenny for 1.5 million dollars. Jenny agrees.

Domino spies on Otto and his lab, and fines "Hydro", a water-powered automobile. Otto Brookheimer patented the idea in May 1976 but sold it to the auto industry less than thirty days later. The auto industry buried the idea, considering it a threat. Gage and Otto wait for a communication satellite to align so they can send a triggering signal across the entire country, destroying every gas-consuming device. Otto examines Domino and discovers her camera and suspects the car was sent from Ford, GM or Chrysler to spy on him. Jenny and Duke arrive at the estate, followed by Trek and Erica. They see the entire house is glowing, and conclude that the house itself is acting as a transmitter. Otto escapes in Hydro, while Trek attempts to disarm the transmitter. Erica keeps disturbing him, asking him if he has enough time. He makes her keep quiet by telling her to hold a piece of wire over her head, without giving her the reason. Trek disarms the transmission.

Kyle pursues Otto, trying to stop him from using the back-up mobile transmitter mounted on Hydro. Kyle leaps on to Hydro during a high-speed chase. He dumps a bottle of "Selza-Aid" tablets into Hydro's fuel tank, and the car grinds to a halt. The pressure builds up in the tank, and the car explodes.



In reality, the water car is an impossible invention - water by itself contains no potential energy, and thus can't be harnessed to drive a vehicle without some other source of power. The closest thing to a real-life water car would be a steam engine. However, the idea of the oil industry suppressing alternative fuels is quite real - a similar fate awaited the General Motors EV-1 electric car just a few years after this episode aired. The car was quite successful, but all the vehicles were recalled and crushed, and electric cars didn't return to the market until almost ten years later.