The Spindle: Car Kebab

The Spindle is a sculpture designed by the artist Dustin Shuler in 1989. It consists of eight different cars impaled on a spike. It was in the car park of a Cermark Plaza shopping center in Berwyn, Illinois, United States. On May 2, 2008, it was demolished.

The Spindle

David Bermant, the owner of the shopping center, commissioned the sculpture for the car park.

In fact, his BMW was the second from the top of the spike. Shuler’s own red Volkswagen Beetle car crowned the sculpture. The spike is 15 meters tall. The Spindle gained its popularity with the movie Wayne’s World, later it was featured on postcards, tourist brochures, and maps. The impaled cars resembled a shish kebab therefore it was nicknamed ”Car Kebab”.

There were 8 cars impaled on the spike. From top to bottom, the cars were:

  • 1967 Volkswagen Beetle
  • 1976 BMW 2002
  • 1981 Ford Escort
  • 1974 or 1973 Mercury Capri
  • 1978 Ford Mustang II
  • 1981 Pontiac Grand Prix
  • 1980 or 1979 Ford LTD
  • 1981 or 1979 Mercury Grand Marquis
The Spindle

The Spindle was an icon for the city but not everyone liked the assemblage. In 1990, the people of Berwyn voted to take it down but Bermant strongly objected to it. When he died in 2000, the Spindle lost one of its major defenders. In 2008, despite the opposition, it was disassembled and the top two cars were removed for later possible usage.

The Spindle