Given that it was in the '70s when 8 cylinders were abundant, there could be many. Has it ever been revealed — an interview, a book, someone with really good ears — what car that is?

Here is a clip

3 Answers 3


Short of a definitive answer, but this quote:

For the car, Bob [Ezrin] walked from the Record Plant studio with microphones recording the sounds of him opening the door, starting the engine of a studio employee's car parked on 44th Street, and playing with the stick shift.1

Also found a reference to the book Shout it Out Loud: The Story of Kiss’s "Destroyer" and the Making of an American Icon (James Campion, Backbeat Books, 2015), of which one reviewer wrote:

At 380 pages, Campion’s book digs in deep, exploring the backstory of an album that many regard as Kiss’s best, with plenty of info about “Detroit Rock City,” the album’s epic lead-off track.2

So, possibly a good place to look for a make/model, if known.

1 https://www.kissmonster.com/song_stories/song_stories_destroyer_01.php

2 https://www.freep.com/story/entertainment/music/2015/10/24/detroit-rock-city-kiss-fan-death-mystery-new-book/74405434/


I've been listening for 45 years to this song. It's either sounds like a Ferrari or a similar 8 or 12 cylinder European supercar engine. I've got a CD with the sounds of 15 or more Ferrari Engines. That engine does not sound like a American V8. The gear shift on the door doesn't sound like a American Muscle Car. Just too light weight of a sound. P.S.R.

  • The previous response provides insight into the door closing and playing with the gears; I do not know how likely it would be for a studio employee to afford a Ferrari. The engine sound of the speeding car in the middle of the song could be from a different car, possibly the one(s) you point out.
    – Vectorizer
    Feb 24, 2021 at 10:59

I think it is either a Porsche or a Triumph. He pumps the gas twice before starting, so it is a carbureted engine with a choke. Smaller than a V8, revs quickly.

  • The car in the beginning is different than the one (accelerating) in the song.
    – Vectorizer
    Feb 12 at 21:51

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