Fox News reports that one of the most legendary movie cars in Hollywood history may have been found after nearly 50 years. According to the report, the 1968 Steve McQueen cult action classic Bullitt had two Mustangs used during filming (very common practice in automotive filmmaking). In this case, one was kept neat and tidy and a second did most of the stunt work during the film’s groundbreaking chase scene. The pampered star car was preserved and sold three times over the years and is privately owned today, while the stunt car was beaten up so badly by the end of production that it was thought to be sent to a wrecking yard.
At least that’s what most people thought. Apparently a member of the Vintage Mustang Forum claims the car recently surfaced in Mexico. User Fede Garza posted photos of a Mustang that was about to be converted into a replica of the “Eleanor” Mustang from the movie Gone in 60 Seconds at his friend’s restoration shop. But when the owner researched the vehicle identification number (VIN), he learned that he might have something special on his hands.
If authentic, the number is a match with the missing movie car. The vehicle also features other telltale features that it could be the real deal, including reinforced shock towers, a custom 9-inch rear axle, and holes in the trunk that are presumably there to accommodate a generator used to power in-car camera lights. Garza says the Mustang had been rotting away in Baja California Sur for 20 or 30 years.
The report goes on to say that top classic Ford expert Kevin Marti of Marti Auto Works in El Mirage, Arizona, owns the exclusive license to production records of every car the company built from 1967 to 2012. It was a report from his company that tipped off the owner to the possible treasure he had, and Marti tells Fox News that he’s heading to northern Mexico today to validate the car’s provenance in person.
If Marti authenticates the vehicle, Garza’s plan is to display the car at a local Ford dealership and then send it to the U.S. for a proper restoration. The timing couldn’t be better either, because next year is the 50th anniversary of Bullitt, and a recent Ford promotional video staring Dwayne Johnson suggests that the automaker is working on a special edition of the current Mustang to mark the occasion.
I’m a big fan of Mustangs and Billitt, so I’ll be paying very close attention as this story develops and share information here on Film Fetish.
In the meantime, we have some amazing Steve McQueen collectibles in the Film Fetish Flea Market, including a limited edition signed by his last wife Barbara McQueen. You can see the items Here.