Koopa Clown Car

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This article is about the helicopter-like vehicle often piloted by Bowser. For the kart from the Mario Kart series, see Koopa Clown. For Bowser Jr.'s personal airship, see Junior Clown Car.
Koopa Clown Car
Artwork of Bowser riding his Koopa Clown Car in Mario Party Superstars
Artwork of Bowser riding the Koopa Clown Car from Mario Party Superstars
First appearance Super Mario World (1990)
Latest appearance The Super Mario Bros. Movie
“Can you believe that Lord Bowser banned me from piloting the clown car again?”
Shy Guy, Paper Mario: The Origami King

The Koopa Clown Car, also called Bowser's Heli,[1] the Clown Ship,[1] the Koopa Clown 'Copter,[2] or Bowser's Clown Copter,[3] is Bowser's usual mode of fast aerial transportation. It is a helicopter-like vehicle with a large clown face on the front, which has the ability to change its expression. A smaller version of the Koopa Clown Car named the Junior Clown Car is often piloted by Bowser Jr.


Super Mario series[edit]

Super Mario World[edit]

Bowser fighting Mario in his Koopa Clown Car in Super Mario World
Bowser in the Koopa Clown Car

The first appearance of the Koopa Clown Car was in Super Mario World; in the Valley of Bowser, Bowser can be seen flying around his castle in it. After making his way through Bowser's Castle and onto the rooftop of it, Mario proceeds to battle Bowser, who rides around in the Koopa Clown Car. Attacking Mario by dropping Big Steelies and Mechakoopas on him, Bowser can be injured only by having a jumped-on Mechakoopa thrown at him when he sticks his head out of the Koopa Clown Car. After being hit by Mechakoopas several times, Bowser tries to use the Koopa Clown Car, whose face grows more sinister and manic, to crush Mario. Bowser also begins dropping Flames from the Koopa Clown Car. Princess Toadstool tosses Mario a Super Mushroom. After being hit six times by flung Mechakoopas, Bowser and the Koopa Clown Car are beaten; he then relinquishes Princess Toadstool from it and retreats. The Koopa Clown Car here is able to blink and show other facial expressions with its eyes.

Early sprites found in the source code of prototypes of the game seem to indicate it was initially intended to have a wind-up key on the bottom instead of a propeller.[4]

New Super Mario Bros. Wii[edit]

Bowser Jr. riding the Junior Clown Car in New Super Mario Bros. Wii

In New Super Mario Bros. Wii, Bowser Jr. gets his own version of the Koopa Clown Car (later named the Junior Clown Car). It is encountered in World 4-The Icon of a Airship from New Super Mario Bros. Wii.Airship and World 6-The Icon of a Airship from New Super Mario Bros. Wii.Airship, but in World 8-The Icon of a Airship from New Super Mario Bros. Wii.Airship, Bowser Jr. kicks it out of the boss room in favor of the original Koopa Clown Car. He attacks Mario and friends with fireballs and spiked bombs, which can be used to defeat him with a well-timed Ground Pound.

New Super Mario Bros. 2[edit]

The Koopalings riding the Koopa Clown Car in New Super Mario Bros. 2
The Koopalings kidnapping Princess Peach while riding the Koopa Clown Car.

The Clown Car re-appears in the 3DS game New Super Mario Bros. 2. The Koopalings can be seen riding in it together. In the corridors of the final castle in World 6 (and World Star), the Koopalings are seen "flashing" with the Koopa Clown Car's eyes. Mario can evade said "flash" by passing between the castle's pillars. If the flash touches Mario, he will be turned into stone. After Mario defeats Bowser for the first time, the Koopalings use their magic to enlarge Bowser, but in doing so they and the Clown Car get knocked into the lava. The Koopa Clown Car was used one final time in the ending, where the Koopalings attempted to carry Bowser with it. However, because Bowser's size exceeded its capacity, the Koopalings and Bowser were scattered throughout the trees and floor. The Koopa Clown Car was also revealed to have an autopilot function, as demonstrated when the Koopa Clown Car delivered a caged Princess Peach to Bowser's castle shortly after Ludwig von Koopa's defeat at the hands of Mario in the game.

Super Mario 3D World[edit]

While the Koopa Clown Car does not appear at all in Super Mario 3D World, its face can be seen on a ferris wheel in World Bowser and also in the final level.

Super Mario Maker / Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS[edit]

Official artwork, from Super Mario Maker.
Mario in the Koopa Clown Car in the Super Mario Bros. style.
Official artwork, from Super Mario Maker.
A Chain Chomp using the car in the New Super Mario Bros. U style.

The Koopa Clown Car makes an appearance in Super Mario Maker and Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS, where it can be placed multiple times in levels. It can be used Super Mario Bros., Super Mario Bros. 3, Super Mario World and New Super Mario Bros. U styles, where it will simply bob up and down in place when not in use. Additionally, it has been given new sprites for the Super Mario Bros. and Super Mario Bros. 3 styles. Mario or any enemy can ride the Koopa Clown Car, including Bowser and Bowser Jr. themselves. When the player rides it, it functions similar to Lakitu's Cloud, though it is slower and can be used indefinitely. If Mario is riding it, he can attack most enemies by hitting them with the car's propeller, which will have the same effect as a jump; however, an enemy cannot hurt Mario through the car, and only pushes him back. Fire Mario can throw fireballs from inside the car. When the car hits something, including another car, it will bounce against it. If it hits Spike Traps, the Clown Car will become dizzy and uncontrollable for a limited period of time. The Clown Car is defeated if it is crushed by more than one Bill Blaster or Muncher. When a Boo is in a Clown Car, the Clown Car will close its eyes when looked at. The Clown Car takes the form of the Junior Clown Car in the New Super Mario Bros. U style. Shaking it transforms it into the Fire Koopa Clown Car.

Super Mario Run[edit]

Koopa Clown Car model from Super Mario Run

Bowser uses the Koopa Clown Car in the introduction cutscene and artwork for Super Mario Run. He also uses it in the "Bowser's Bob-ombing Run" stage.

Super Mario Odyssey[edit]

In Super Mario Odyssey, the Koopa Clown Car can be seen when Mario captures Bowser, using its appearance from Super Mario World.

Super Mario Maker 2[edit]

A Koopa Clown Car in Super Mario Maker 2

Koopa Clown Cars, as well as Fire Koopa Clown Cars, reappear in Super Mario Maker 2, functioning the same as they do in the original Super Mario Maker. They are located in the Enemies category.

In the version 2.0 update, they make a sinister expression when Link drops a bomb when riding one.

Super Mario World television series[edit]

"Send in the Clown"[edit]

King Koopa using the Clown Car in the Super Mario World cartoon.

The Koopa Clown Car appeared in the Super Mario World cartoon episode "Send in the Clown." King Koopa uses the Koopa Clown Car to announce to the cave-people of Dome City that they could go to the "Koopaling Bros. Circus" free of charge.

Near the end of the episode, after Mario has destroyed the fake circus, an enraged King Koopa, having taken Princess Toadstool hostage, begins to attack Mario in the Koopa Clown Car in a manner similar to the final boss battle from the game. He does so by dropping Big Steelies and Mechkoopas on Mario, as well as attempting to crush him. Eventually, King Koopa and his Koopa Clown Car were defeated when Mario hurled a Mechkoopa at the vehicle, damaging its controls and causing it to fly off upside-down, dropping Princess Toadstool in the process.

In the DVD Koopa's Stone Age Quests, it is referred to as the "Floating Clown Head".

"Rock TV"[edit]

In "Rock TV", a later episode of Super Mario World, a flower pot resembling the Koopa Clown Car can be seen in King Koopa's throne room.

Super Mario Adventures[edit]

Bowser riding in his Koopa Clown Car in the Super Mario Adventures comic.

In the Super Mario Adventures comic, Bowser appears riding in his Koopa Clown Car (called a Koopa Copter by Luigi) after Mario and Luigi defeat all the monsters he sent to rampage through Princess Toadstool's Castle. After proceeding to tell Princess Toadstool his plans of marrying her and turning dozens of bystanders to stone, Bowser flees the scene in the Koopa Clown Car, with Princess Toadstool and several dozen Toads after him.

Much later in the comic, after Bowser's wedding to Princess Toadstool is crashed by Mario, Luigi, Yoshi and several hundred Yoshis, Bowser tries to flee in the Koopa Clown Car. Using a rope, Mario manages to lasso the Koopa Clown Car and cause it to crash into Bowser's giant wedding cake, apparently destroying it.

Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars[edit]

Sprite of a Shy Guy piloting the Koopa Clown Car from Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars

Bowser briefly uses the Koopa Clown Car in the Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars. In this game, Bowser uses the Koopa Clown Car to abduct Princess Toadstool from Mario's yard. Bowser then uses the Koopa Clown Car to transport himself and Princess Toadstool to Bowser's Keep.

The Koopa Clown Car is seen again during the ending of the game, with a Shy Guy riding inside while Bowser and his troops are repairing the damage done to the castle by the Smithy Gang. The Koopa Clown Car makes a final appearance during the credits, emerging from a float made in the likeness of Bowser's Keep when Croco and his flunkies are attempting to loot it. Bowser, from within the Koopa Clown Car, gives chase to Croco until Booster hijacks the Koopa Clown Car from him.

Paper Mario series[edit]

Paper Mario[edit]

Bowser in his Koopa Clown Car in Paper Mario.

At the start of Paper Mario, Bowser uses a gigantic, stone version of the Koopa Clown Car to raise Peach's Castle into the atmosphere. This version of the Koopa Clown Car also had several spiked balls hanging off it; it also makes a cameo appearance in Mario Kart: Super Circuit, where it can be seen in the background of the Rainbow Road track.

Also in the beginning of Paper Mario, Bowser uses the regular Koopa Clown Car to invade Star Haven and burst through a window in Princess Peach's Castle. Bowser also uses the Koopa Clown Car to temporarily escape after being beaten in Princess Peach's Castle.

Also of note, the platform used by Bowser to power himself up during his final battle against Mario resembles a long, flat version of the Koopa Clown Car, while several smaller, 3-dimensional versions of the Koopa Clown Car can be found in the hangar of Bowser's Castle. All iterations of the Koopa Clown Car use the "angry" face by default in this game and the next.

Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door[edit]

PMTTYD Koopa Clown Car First Appearance.png
The Koopa Clown Car from Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door.

After learning from Kammy Koopa that the X-Nauts have kidnapped Princess Peach, Bowser sets off after the Princess in his Koopa Clown Car.

Later on in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, Bowser, after failing to get a ride on the Cheep Blimp, uses his Koopa Clown Car to get to Glitzville. Unfortunately, the Koopa Clown Car breaks-down in mid-flight and crashes into the ocean, where Bowser apparently left it.

Paper Mario: Color Splash[edit]

Right after its absence in Super Paper Mario and Paper Mario: Sticker Star (Junior Clown Car notwithstanding regarding the latter game), the Koopa Clown Car makes a cameo appearance in Paper Mario: Color Splash during the end credits where Bowser rides it, attached to the airship float. The Junior Clown Car also can be seen in the storage room behind the Emerald Circus tent, but concept art shows that it was originally going to be the Koopa Clown Car.

Paper Mario: The Origami King[edit]

A Shy Guy coming to assist Bowser

In Paper Mario: The Origami King, Mario, Bowser, and Olivia escape on the Koopa Clown Car, which is piloted by a Shy Guy, when King Olly takes over Peach's Castle. The Koopa Clown Car can later be seen in the hangar area of Bowser's Castle, where the Shy Guy tells Mario that he is not allowed to pilot it anymore. It has the same design from Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam.

Super Smash Bros. series[edit]

Super Smash Bros. Melee[edit]

A trophy of the Koopa Clown Car appears in Super Smash Bros. Melee.

Super Smash Bros. Brawl[edit]

The Koopa Clown Car in Super Smash Bros. Brawl.

In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, in the Subspace Emissary, Bowser uses this car twice. The first time it is used, Bowser uses it to escape from Mario, Pit, Yoshi, Link, and Kirby while taking the princess (Peach or Zelda). It is later used to escape from Falco, Diddy Kong, and Fox. After that, it is not seen again.

Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS / Wii U[edit]

In Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, the Koopa Clown Car can occasionally be seen in the background of the Super Mario Maker stage.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate[edit]

The Koopa Clown Car in the Super Mario Maker stage reappears in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

Mario Golf series[edit]

Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour[edit]

In the introduction clip of Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour, Bowser uses the Koopa Clown Car, which is equipped with two Bullet Bill Blasters, to chase down Wario and Waluigi in retribution for unwittingly giving him a black eye during their golfing session. Hole 11 of Bowser Badlands takes place on a giant Clown Car.

Mario Golf: World Tour[edit]

The Koopa Clown Car appears as the green for Hole 7 in Bowser's Castle in Mario Golf: World Tour, noticeably larger than any other Koopa Clown Car seen before.

Mario Party series[edit]

The Koopa Clown Car in Mario Party 8.

The Koopa Clown Car has appeared in several installments of the Mario Party series, most notably in Mario Party 5, Mario Party 6, Mario Party 7, and Mario Party 8. In Mario Party 8, it is depicted as having thicker lips and a green extension attached to its propeller; in addition to summoning cannons, it also has the ability to open its mouth, revealing a laser gun. However, these weapons are not all revealed in the beginning of the battle. The battle starts out with just laser gun blasts, and for approximately every four times Bowser is hit with blasts from the Star Rod, he becomes angrier and summons additional weapons, eventually progressing to a full-scale assault, with laser gun blasts and Bullet Bill cannons being fired simultaneously. In Mario Party 9, Bowser appears in the Koopa Clown Car at the end of a stage. Bowser and Bowser Jr. also ride their vehicles together in the ending. In Mario Party: Island Tour, Bowser uses the Koopa Clown Car for transportation and during Bowser's Ballistic Blowout. The Koopa Clown Car is used by Bowser for all three of the Bowser's Gauntlet minigames in Mario Party: Star Rush. The Clown Car makes a minor appearance in Mario Party: The Top 100 where it replaces Bowser's unnamed hovercraft in The Final Battle!. In the remake of Yoshi's Tropical Island in Mario Party Superstars, the Koopa Clown Car replaces the Bowser's Shell Bowser uses to swap places with Toadette (who herself replaces Toad as the one who gives Stars to the players).

In its early appearances, the Koopa Clown Car has a similar appearance to its Paper Mario depiction. Starting from Mario Party 9, it has since used its usual appearance.

Mario & Luigi series[edit]

Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga / Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser's Minions[edit]

Koopa Clown Car M&LSS sprite.png

In Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga and Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser's Minions, after gaining the cure for Mario's Bean Fever, Luigi returns to Little Fungitown, only to encounter Bowletta, who has captured Princess Peach and is rapidly escaping with her in the Koopa Clown Car.

Later in Joke's End, Bowletta uses the Koopa Clown Car to capture Luigi, whom Bowletta believed to be Princess Peach, as Luigi was disguised as the Princess.

Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time[edit]

Baby Bowser escaping in the Koopa Clown Car in Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time.

At the end of Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time, Baby Bowser can be seen returning to his castle with Kamek in the Koopa Clown Car. He also uses it after swiping the two Cobalt Star shards after the Mario Bros. and babies destroy Swiggler and he and Kamek get away. Incidentally, the Koopa Clown Car Baby Bowser uses is exactly the same as the one Bowser uses later in life, which may be the reason it has a clown face.

Mario & Luigi: Dream Team[edit]

KoopaClown DreamTeam.png

Machines similar to the Koopa Clown Car make an appearance in Neo Bowser Castle as Dreampoints, and the actual machine appears in the ending, where Bowser and his minions use it to escape Pi'illo Island, only for it to start losing altitude due to Private Goomp and Sergeant Guy shaking it in an attempt to catch the raining coins. In this game, the Clown Car is not bowl-shaped as it has been in previous games, but has a flat surface level with the rim on which the rider stands. The Dreampoint replicas also have this trait.

Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam[edit]

Sprite of the Koopa Clown Car from Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam.

Both the normal and the paper versions of the Koopa Clown Car make a reappearance in Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam. They are used by the Bowsers as they kidnap the two versions of Princess Peach and later to escape from Mario, Luigi, and Paper Mario. The normal Koopa Clown Car is later used in Neo Bowser Castle where Bowser attacks the bros to prevent them from taking one of the two Fire Ores. Additionally, faceless variants are used by Roy, Iggy, Wendy and Morton during various quests. The paper Koopa Clown Car has had a slight redesign, resembling the normal Koopa Clown Car and both versions of the Junior Clown Car.

Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story + Bowser Jr.'s Journey[edit]

Although the Koopa Clown Car does not appear in the main game in Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story + Bowser Jr.'s Journey, it does make a brief cameo in the alternate story mode Bowser Jr.'s Journey, where Bowser is seen using it when preparing to leave for Peach's Castle after he was not invited to the blorbs conference.

Mario Kart series[edit]

Mario Kart DS[edit]

In Mario Kart DS, Bowser's third choice kart is the Hurricane, a kart that resembles his Clown Car but with a plane motif.

Mario Kart 7[edit]

In Mario Kart 7, an unlockable kart part called the Koopa Clown is modeled after the Koopa Clown Car. The kart part features a handling boost, but it hinders acceleration and off-road during the process. Actual Koopa Clown Cars appear in the retro battle stage, N64 Big Donut, and in the tracks Wuhu Loop and Neo Bowser City, blowing wind for drivers flying above with gliders; the ones in N64 Big Donut and Neo Bowser City have a green rim and feature Bowser's emblem instead of a face, while the one in Wuhu Loop is featureless and has a teal rim.

Mario Kart 8 / Mario Kart 8 Deluxe[edit]

The Koopa Clown in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

In Mario Kart 8 DLC, jack-in-the-boxes shaped like Koopa Clown Cars with ? Blocks for the boxes are hazards on the glider portion of GBA Ribbon Road. The Koopa Clown Car on 3DS Neo Bowser City returns, but has been slightly redesigned.

In the Nintendo Switch port, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, the Koopa Clown returns from Mario Kart 7 as an additional kart body. The Koopa Clown Car appearances from the Mario Kart 8 DLC are also present in the base game.

Mario Kart Tour[edit]

A Koopa Clown Car dropping rings on the track in Mario Kart Tour

In Mario Kart Tour, air-blowing Koopa Clown Cars from Mario Kart 7 appear in 3DS Neo Bowser City and GBA Bowser's Castle 2T. Regular Koopa Clown Cars are found in Paris Promenade 3's Ring Race and Los Angeles Laps 3's Break Item Boxes bonus challenges, producing rings or Item Boxes for the characters to drive through. The Koopa Clown returns in this game alongside a new darker variant known as the Dark Clown and a Christmas-themed variant known as the Candy Clown.

Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle[edit]

In Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle, Luigi's Bozo Blaster and Peach's Big Top are modeled after the Koopa Clown Car. Additionally, stained glass windows showing the Koopa Clown Car can be seen behind Bowser's throne during the final battle.[5]

Skylanders SuperChargers[edit]

In Skylanders: SuperChargers and Skylanders: SuperChargers Racing, Hammer Slam Bowser can ride a vehicle called "Clown Cruiser". Essentially, it is a mix between a Koopa Clown Car and a plane. There is also a dark version, known as the "Dark Clown Cruiser".

The Super Mario Bros. Movie[edit]

In The Super Mario Bros. Movie, miniature versions of the Koopa Clown Car can seen piloted by Koopa Troopas, some with cannons in their mouths. In an ad for the film, one Koopa Clown Car can be seen carrying a Bob-omb with arms similar to the Junior Clown Car's boxer form but with metallic claws instead of boxing gloves.[6]


Super Smash Bros. Melee trophy[edit]

Name Image Game Description
Koopa Clown Car Koopa Clown Car Super Mario World
Bowser's single-seat, personal airship doesn't exactly handle like a dream, but it wasn't designed to be sporty. The Koopa Clown Car was made to carry Bowser's huge weight, not to mention a logic-defying arsenal of massive bowling balls. In Super Mario World, Mario busted the Koopa Clown Car by pelting it with Mecha Koopas.

Super Mario Maker[edit]

  • Play Nintendo:
    Hitch a ride in a Koopa Clown Car

    Swipe a Koopa Clown Car for the ultimate mode of travel. Plus, they don’t evaporate like clouds, so you can zoom all the way to the finish if you’re lucky.


For this subject's image gallery, see Gallery:Koopa Clown Car.

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese クッパクラウン
Kuppa Kuraun
Bowser Clown
Chinese (Simplified) 酷霸王小丑车 (McDonald's China, Winter 2016 Happy Meal promotionMedia:Mario Happy Meal 2016 CN Promotional Image.jpg)
Kùbàwáng Xiǎochǒu Chē
Kùbàwáng Xiǎochǒu Fēichuán
Bowser Clown Car

Bowser Clown Airship

Chinese (Traditional) 庫巴小丑飛船
Kùbā Xiǎochǒu Fēichuán
Bowser Clown Airship
Dutch Koopa Clown-capsule[8] Koopa clown
Koopa Clown Capsule
French Koopa-Mobile
Koopa Coptère (Super Mario Adventures)
From Koopa and automobile
Koopa Copter
German Clown-Kutsche Clown Coach
Italian Auto Clown Koopa Koopa Clown Car
Korean 쿠파피에로
Kupa Piero
Bowser Pierrot
Portuguese (NOA) Cápsula Koopalhaço Cápsula ("capsule") + a portmanteau of Koopa and palhaço ("clown")
Portuguese (NOE) Carro Palhaço Koopa[9] Koopa Clown Car
Russian Клоуномобиль купа
Klounomobil' kupa
Koopa Clownmobile
Spanish (NOA) Cápsula Koopayaso From Koopa, payaso ("clown") and cápsula ("capsule")
Spanish (NOE) Helikoopa From hélice ("propeller") and Koopa


  • In Super Mario Maker, there are unused sprites for a Big Steely and a tear. These were likely intended for a further replication of Bowser's behavior in Super Mario World, while in the final game, he simply chases the player and throws Bob-ombs.


  1. ^ a b M. Arakawa. Mario Mania Player's Guide. Page 52.
  2. ^ Stratton, Bryan. Super Mario World: Super Mario Advance 2 Prima's Official Strategy Guide. Page 91.
  3. ^ Nintendo of America. MAR10DAY post. Twitter. Retrieved March 10, 2023.
  4. ^ GamingAlexandri (July 24, 2020). People are digging up all sorts of unused art assets from the latest Nintendo leak. Here's some screenshots of some examples. Bowser from SMW apparently had legs at one time? Twitter. Retrieved July 25, 2020.
  5. ^ BeardBear (August 27, 2017). Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle - FINAL BOSS & Ending. YouTube. Retrieved August 27, 2017.
  6. ^ Universal Pictures (March 10, 2023). Super Mario Bros. Il Film | Fan screening Facebook. Retrieved March 24, 2023.
  7. ^ Super Mario Maker Platforming Tips. Play Nintendo. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  8. ^ Nintendo Nederland (December 17, 2015). Super Mario Maker - Nieuwe functies! (Wii U). YouTube. Retrieved May 19, 2019.
  9. ^ Nintendo Portugal (December 17, 2015). Super Mario Maker - Novas funcionalidades! (Wii U). YouTube. Retrieved January 11, 2021.