If a car is featured heavily in an iconic film or television show, it can make that vehicle famous — sometimes about as famous as everything else in the movie or show. Famous cars can hold value for decades and fetch high prices at dealerships or on the auction block. Film producers are in on it at times; there’s something called “product placement,” where a car maker will pay a director or donate brand new cars to get their product featured in the movie.
Cars can be as much of a scene stealer as anything else
Chances are just about anyone can think of a few famous autos from TV or film that have a special place in their hearts. Some people go so far as to buy the car from the movie or show they remember. Here’s a small list of some true classics from movies and TV. It’s by no means comprehensive.
- The Chevy Camaro. Camaros have been in a lot of movies and shows. The recent “Lost” auction had a Camaro among the lots. The “Transformers” films featured a vintage and new Camaro, which certainly helped marketing campaigns and sales.
- Ford Mustang – Steve McQueen in “Bullitt” famously drove a 1968 Ford Mustang GT Fastback. Other famous Mustangs include a 1967 Shelby GT500 and a 1973 Mach 1 from the remake and original, respectively, of “Gone in 60 Seconds.” Ford even offered a “Bullitt” package on the 2001 Mustang.
- DeLorean DMC 12 – The time machine from “Back to the Future” made this car a legend. It certainly looked futuristic, but drivers lamented the car for being woefully inadequate under the hood and for being a complete lemon.
- Dodge Charger – Not only did a 1968 Charger chase Steve McQueen in “Bullitt,” a Charger was “General Lee” from the “Dukes of Hazard” TV series and recent film, and it was featured in Quentin Tarantino’s “Deathproof.”
- The Pontiac Trans Am. The ridiculously fast Firebird package was “KITT” in the “Knight Rider” series and featured heavily in “Smokey and the Bandit” as Burt Reynolds’ car of choice.
Nobody does it better
The ultimate movie car is the Aston Martin DB5. That’s why a DB5 used in “Goldfinger” went for more than $2 million several years ago. The “James Bond” franchise and Aston Martin have a long history. “Goldfinger” made the car famous. The car also made it into “Goldeneye” and “Casino Royale.” A late ’60s DBS was in “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.” The newer generation of Aston Martins, such as the Vanquish, were featured in “Casino Royale,” “Die Another Day” and “Quantum of Solace.”
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