The Ecto-1a was an updated version of the Ecto-1 that the Ghostbusters used to travel. This vehicle appears in the film Ghostbusters II and many issues of Volume One and Two of the Ongoing IDW Comic Series.
The Ghostbusters had put improvements on Ecto-1 with more technical equipment.One of the most noticeable upgrades was a digital announcement board running down either side of the vehicle's roof broadcasting Ghostbuster advertisements, specials, and their phone number, JL5-2020 or 555-2020. Also, the logo was updated on the doors and back entrance of the ambulance, and was put on the hood.
Secondary Canon History
After the "Infestation" event, the Ghostbusters switched from their Ecto-1 look back to Ecto-1a with a few tweaks, such as keeping the classic No Ghost logo. Ecto-1a was taken along by the Ghostbusters on their summer cross country trip across America. It was rear ended when Peter and Laura Parr were attacked by the Phantom Truck Driver. Luckily, a Super Slammer Muon Trap was attached to the roof for the trip. On Peter's cue, Laura opened the trap and the phantom was captured. Once the Ghostbusters returned to New York, Ray Stantz and Winston Zeddemore began maintenance on Ecto-1a. The next year, the New Ghostbusters used Ecto-1a for a little over three months while the Ghostbusters were imprisoned in the Collectors' Limbo. Kylie Griffin drove Ecto-1a to the Parkview Psychiatric Hospital for a consultation that turned into a confrontation with Idulnas and The Collectors. In November, on the night of the Day of the Dead, Ecto-1a's roof was slashed up by a projection of Santa Muerte. Winston was visibly angered by the attack and shot the projection, causing it to split into two.
Ghostbusters II Trivia
- Ecto-1a was originally scripted as Ecto-2, and one reference to this remains in the movie. When Dr. Venkman is standing outside of his apartment and the car pulls up, the phrase "Ecto-2" is visible on the license plate.
- In Ghostbusters II, Chapter 16: Vigo 101, on the wall in Peter's office in the Firehouse are frames of magazine and newspaper features. In the center of row 3 is a Motor Trend issue with Ecto-1a on the cover. The images are various promo shots.
- In a deleted scene set after Chapter 16: Vigo 101, a Vigo-possessed Ray tried to kill the Ghostbusters while driving Ecto-1a. At the last second, Winston punched Ray and jammed the brake. Instead of a lethal crash, Ecto-1a skidded into a tree.
- In the November 27, 1988 draft, on page 97, the Ghostbusters drive to Gracie Mansion in Ecto-2.
- In a deleted scene that would have introduced Louis Tully's cousin Sherman Tully. It was revealed Sherman helped get the Ghostbusters released from Parkview Psychiatric Hospital. One of the conditions was he would get to ride in Ecto-1a.
- In the 11/27/88 draft, Louis filled up the car's gas tank with Super Unleaded, 20 cents more than Regular, and put it on his own credit card.
- In the deleted scene Peter's Concern, Jack Hardemeyer refers to Ecto-1a as the Ghostbusters' clown car.
- As part of Kenner's The Real Ghostbusters Toy Line, an animated version of Ecto-1a was part of the ninth wave of toys.
- Later, Jocsa reissued the Kenner vehicle and also released a version with working lights and sound based off the previous version.
Ghostbusters: Afterlife Trivia
- The Ecto-1a that Sony had in a storage container was one of the cars used to build Ecto-1 in Ghostbusters: Afterlife.
- An Ecto-1a license plate was in the Farmhouse's barn but it was not seen during the movie.
IDW Comics Trivia
- The design for the Chicago Ghostbusters' Ecto-15 is partly based on Benton Jew's Ectomobile concept art.
- On Subscription Cover A of Ghostbusters 101 #1, Ecto-1a appears in place of the DeLorean in the homage to "Back to the Future".
- The phone number on Ecto-1a sports an extra "0" after "JL"
- On page 383 of Ghostbusters: Interdimensional Cross-Rip, Ecto-1a appears.
- On Cover A of Ghostbusters Crossing Over Issue #1, Garrett Miller is sitting in Ecto-1a.
- Aykroyd, Dan & Ramis, Harold (1988). Ghostbusters II (November 27, 1988 Draft) (Script p. 108). Louis Tully says: "I brought everything you asked for and I gassed up that car with Super Unleaded. It cost twenty cents more than Regular Unleaded but you get much better performance and in an old car like this that'll end up saving you money in the long run. I put it on my credit card, so you can either reimburse me or I can take it out of petty cash--"
- Go Creative Show YouTube "Ghostbusters Afterlife Production Design (with Francois Audouy) GCS291" 30:20-31:10 12/6/2021 Francois Audouy says: "We ended up using the-an Ecto-1 that Sony had in a storage container from the second film and then purchasing a second Ecto-1-a second 1959 Cadillac and then we took every-the picture vehicle company took the whole-both cars apart and catalog every single piece of both cars like like I don't know like forensically so basically imagine walking into a garage and two cars were completely torn-taken apart and then cataloged and then every singe piece, thousands and thousands of pieces were restored but then the cars now the cars, it wasn't just a restoration job because the cars had to do three things."
- Tested YouTube "The Production Design of Ghostbusters: Afterlife!" 4:33-4:27 1/26/2022
- Ghostbusters II
- Ghostbusters II
- IDW Comics
- Ongoing Series
- Volume 1
- Volume 2
- Ongoing Series