A list of the 15 most iconic on-screen cars and where they can be found now.
For us enthusiasts, cars that play big roles on the big screen are a bigger deal than the actual Hollywood actors and actors that are cast to play alongside them. A car that has played a large part in a well-known movie often sell anywhere between six to seven figures. One example would be the recent sale of the iconic '68 Mustang fastback driven by Steve McQueen in Bullitt that sold for a staggering $3.74 million at the Mecum auction back in January. Even more, sales normally skyrocket after a car is cast in a blockbuster hit. Because of Smokey & the Bandit, the Trans Am featured in the film had them flying off the showroom floor like hot cakes.
Where are these iconic movie cars now? Where did they end up? Sure, a few had a date with the crusher, some thrown in salvage yards, and some sold for ridiculous amounts of money. Others reside in museums or collections. Check out where 15 the most iconic movie cars can be found today.
15. 1964 Aston Martin DB5 - Goldfinger
Featured in seven James Bond movies, the stunning 1964 Aston Martin DB5 first appeared in the movie Goldfinger. Driven by James Bond played by Sean Connery, the DB5 sold for an insane $4.6 million in October 2010. The buyer was car collector Harry Yeaggy, and he still owns the famous Aston Martin.
14. 1970 Dodge Charger R/T - Fast & Furious
The '70 Dodge Charger R/T driven by Vin Diesel in The Fast and the Furious currently sits at the Volo Auto Museum. However, this movie Mopar is currently back on the market with an asking price of $129,998. Of course, a normal one in mint condition would cost considerably less, and we have plenty of classic Dodge Chargers in our inventory to choose from. On a side note, Paul Walker's entire collection - 21 cars total - sold for $2.3 million at Barrett-Jackson earlier this year. That included the '09 Nissan 370Z from Fast Five and seven BMW M3s.
13. 1966 Ford Thunderbird - Thelma & Louise
In 1991, one of the most epic road movies of all time was introduced to the world - Thelma & Louise. The plot revolves around two best friends who take off on a road trip adventure, but things take an unexpected turn for the worse when they try to escape the police after embarking on a crime spree. This movie had us all wanting a 1966 Ford Thunderbird convertible. In fact, five identical T-birds were used to make the movie including the star car, a camera car, two stunt cars, and another used for back-up. In one of the most memorable scenes of all time, one of those 'Birds was sent off a cliff. One of the remaining cars crossed the auction block at Barrett-Jackson and sold for $71,500. Three times of what a regular T-bird would normally go for, this legendary Ford cemented its name in movie history. Inside, the armrest of the car was signed by Brad Pitt (JD), and the sun visor was signed by Geena Davis (Thelma).
12. DeLorean DMC-12 - Back To The Future
A movie that acquired a cult following was Back To The Future, and the DeLorean DMC-12 that starred in the movie became an instant legend after skyrocketing into popularity. Now, thanks to a permanent loan from Universal Studios, the actual car can be seen on display at the Petersen Automotive Museum where it has resided since April 22, 2016 after a big unveiling during Back to the Future month. While many car movies feature multiple cars for different roles, this was the only DeLorean used in the film.
11. 1974 Dodge Monaco 440 Magnum "Bluesmobile" - The Blues Brothers
Another movie car in the history books is the Bluesmobile from the 1980 film The Blues Brothers. While the identity of the car was never disclosed in the movie, it was actually a 1974 Dodge Monaco 44o Magnum. A total of 60 cars were used in the movie, but most were destroyed. The Bluesmobile rolls up in the opening scene driven by Elwood (Dan Akroyd), and scoops up the newly released Jake (John Belushi) from the Joliet jail. After Jake asks what happened to their old car, a 1968 Cadillac Sixty Special, Elwood explains that he traded it for a microphone. After jumping the decommissioned Mount Prospect police car over Chicago's 95th Street Bridge, Jake approves of their new Bluesmobile.
Originally, the car resided at a blues club in New Orleans. After that, it was driven to Clarksdale, Mississippi, to the Hopson Plantation where it was found by a fan. An interesting but unauthenticated story is that Dan Akroyd was behind the wheel to deliver it to the plantation, but the car broke down forcing him to desert it on the side of the road.
10. 1976 Ford Gran Torino (No. 1) - Starsky & Hutch
While this isn't an actual "movie" car per se, the 1976 Ford Gran Torino was an iconic car from the television show Starsky & Hutch. All vehicles were brought back to Ford's Studio TV Car Lease program after the show's cancellation and A.E. Barber Ford of California purchased them at a Ford auction. Torino #1 was bought by somebody in Ohio in 1988. After that, it was shipped to the United Kingdom after Cars of the Stars Motors Museum purchased the classic. After that, it ended up in Florida among the Dezer Car Collection. The most recent sale was back in January 2015 when a Texas collector picked it up at a private auction. It has since went under the knife for a frame-off full restoration.
9. 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T - Vanishing Point
Here we have yet another 1970 Dodge Charger from the movie Vanishing Point. Sad news is that all of the cars from the original 1971 movie did not survive and were all sold for scrap metal. The good news is that these cars were made again for the film's remake in 1996. All of the cars survived this time. Even better news, all five of the classic Dodge Chargers used all reside in Anderson, Alabama, and belong to Ted Stephens, owner at Stephen's Performance.
8. 1963 Volkswagen Beetle “Herbie" (No. 10) - The Love Bug
The famous car that we all know as Herbie was the 1963 Volkswagen Beetle that stole everyone's hearts in the 1968 movie The Love Bug. As recently as 2018, Herbie became the most valuable VW Beetle when it went to auction and sold for $128,700, more than what it sold for at Barrett-Jackson with hammer-down price of $126k. A total of 11 cars were used for the movie, but only 3 actually remain today. One of the remaining cars sustained serious damage, but was restored Tony Alonzo, the former owner. Now, that VW Beetle is part of a private car collection in the U.S., but it currently sits at the AACA Museum.
7. 1985 Modena Spyder California “Ferrari” (No. 1) - Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
In the 1986 hit Ferris Bueller's Day Off , what was made to appear as the iconic red 1963 Ferrari 250 GTO was actually a 1985 Spyder California built by Modena. In the movie, high school student Ferris Bueller (Matthew Broderick) fakes a sickness to play hooky and takes his father's beloved "Ferrari" for a daytime joyride to Chicago with his friend and girlfriend. A handful of these movie replica cars have crossed the auction block. One of the replica cars went for $400,000, and another one sold at Barrett-Jackson earlier this year for $396,000. It's good to see that the love for '80s nostalgia is on the upward trend as it goes further down into history.
6. 1969 Dodge Charger "The General Lee" - The Dukes of Hazzard
Another television car that deserves a mention is none other than the General Lee from the Dukes of Hazzard - a 1969 Dodge Charger. Multiple '69 Chargers were used for the show. The LEE 1 was equipped with a 383-cubic-inch V8 engine and a full roll cage as a second unit car. Two others, called LEE 2 and LEE 3, were also second unit and used for those close-up shots. The first Charger, LEE 1, went across the auction stage at Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale in 2012 where professional golfer Bubba Watson scooped it up for $110,000, although the buyer's premium fee bumped the price up to $121,000.
5. 1982 Pontiac Trans Am “KITT” - Knight Rider
Another epic television show came from the 1980s was the one and only Knight Rider that starred one of the most recognizable cars to ever come out of Hollywood, a 1982 Pontiac Trans Am named KITT which stood for Knight Industries Two Thousand. The show starred David Hasselhoff, or just "The Hoff" as we like to call him, who fights off evil forces as a solo crime-buster with the help of KITT, a shatterproof car with artificial intelligence. Nowadays, a few of the remaining cars are in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with a man named Joe Huth in Clay Township. You can find an episode of Jay Leno's Garage with Huth and the famous Trans Am.
4. 1958 Plymouth Fury - Christine
One of the most legendary movie cars of all time was a murderous and seductive 1958 Plymouth Fury that created havoc in the 1983 horror flick Christine. Based off a novel written by Stephen King, over 20 Plymouths were used in the movie including the Fury, Belvederes, and Savoys that shared similar characteristics and were all painted red with white interiors. Cincinatti man Bill Gibson owns the original '57 Fury and has since he was 19 years old having spent his entire savings on buying the car and giving it a detailed restoration. Gibson has been strangely quoted saying things such as "the car owns me", and has gone as far as to refer to Christine as his "wife", and even that he is "married" to the classic. According to The Sentinal, Gibson was also quoted saying that "Christine is the new love of his life."
3. 1993 Toyota Supra - Fast & Furious
Driven by the late Paul Walker in The Fast and the Furious was this famous bright orange 1993 Toyota Supra. Many of these Mk IV Supras that were used in the movie were built in California by Eddie Paul from The Shark Shop. This particular car in particular was used in the epic final street race against Vin Diesel's 1970 Dodge Charger R/T mentioned above. The car went to auction in 2015 and sold for $185,000.
2. 1977 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am - Smokey & The Bandit
A car that arguably rivals Burt Reynolds for the star of the 1980 movie Smokey & The Bandit is the incredibly famous 1977 Pontiac Trans Am. This iconic movie about bootleggers trying to transport beer over state lines debuted 40 years ago, and the car is still replicated today with a following that is larger than ever. Unfortunately, there were no surviving cars out of the 12 original Firebirds used for movie production. However, there was one car purchased by Universal Pictures that may not have been involved on the set, but the example was used as a promotional piece for the film. At one point, the car was thrown on eBay, but not one single bid was placed on the car. The vintage Firebird Trans Am then went up for bids at Barrett-Jackson and was purchased for a staggering $550,000 by a car collector in Florida named John Staluppi.
1. 1968 Ford Mustang GT Fastback- Bullitt
The legendary 1968 Ford Mustang GT was driven by the one and only Steve McQueen in Bullitt, arguably the most iconic car movie of all time. Back in the early 1970s, the car was purchased by $6,000 by the Kiernan family who used the car until it was mechanically broken, and then it was stashed in a Kentucky barn on a friend's horse farm. Even McQueen himself tried to purchase the old Bullitt Mustang back from the family, but Bob Kiernan turned him away from the car with a "thanks, but no thanks."
For decades, everybody wondered what happened to the original Bullitt Mustang. It wasn't until the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit when a monumental moment sent a shockwave felt by the entire globe. The original '68 Bullitt was debuted alongside the new 2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt Anniversary Edition during the new model's introduction. NBC calls the original the "holy grail of muscle cars", and it was sold at the Mecum auction earlier this year for a staggering $3.74 million, the most expensive Mustang to ever be sold at auction.
There you have it, folks. That concludes the list of legendary movie cars and where they can be found today. So, which one is your favorite? Let us know by commenting below!