The Department of Mutant Vehicle operations were a success in 2009, and both DMV volunteers and mutant vehicle owners reported having an easier and more fun-filled time at the DMV.

Though every year the number of Mutant Vehicle applications goes up, 2009 gave the DMV a larger than usual increase in the number of applicants. Thankfully, the DMV had all their systems in place to be able to handle the increased volume. And unfortunately, given that there is a limit to how many vehicles can drive at Burning Man, this did mean that more people had to be turned away. Interestingly, there was also had a record number of no shows – vehicles that were invited to the playa but never showed up at the DMV. This may be becoming a trend, and makes it difficult to assess how many vehicles to invite out in order to keep an optimal number driving at the event.

Following more than a year of work with some of those that first brought art cars to the playa, the DMV created the Historical Vehicle category of license. This was created to enable continued licensure of some of the first and most influential art cars that – though still great works of art – do not always meet the ever-increasing level of mutation needed to get a license. This level increases each year as more and more artists create ever more complex vehicles, yet the number of vehicles the DMV can license does not increase at the same rate. Thought few vehicles fit in this category, the DMV is happy to be able to license these vehicles that in many ways started the art car movement at Burning Man.

Again, the Mutant Vehicle creators really brought it out in full force, and wowed the crowd with many amazing and spectacular vehicles. These artists leave the trace of an imaginative and animated world in our memories.

Submitted by,
Wally Bomgaars