Missing Bullitt Mustang Allegedly Found in Mexico After Hiding for Decades
Steve McQueen tear-assing around the streets of San Francisco in a Highland Green 1968 Mustang GT, hoping desperately to catch the two contract killers in a stealth black Dodge Charger R/T of the same vintage, is the standout moment from the film Bullitt. Three minutes of tension-building tailing followed by seven minutes of the most enjoyable and realistic on-screen tire-smoking mayhem ever set to jazz fusion. It is still one of the best car chases in any film, if not the best.
Sadly, as with most movie cars, the Mustang that did the majority of that incredible driving and took the brunt of the abuse vanished while the one kept pristine for the camera ended up on the East Coast in someone’s private collection. The owner of that car is notoriously secretive about it and has used it off-and-on as a daily driver, which is a shame, as the stunt car was assumed to have been sent to a junkyard and destroyed.
Then it cropped up in Mexico after having languished in anonymity for decades.
After filming wrapped on Bullitt, Steve McQueen purportedly tried to purchase the surviving vehicle to no avail. The Mexican Mustang, which has telltale modifications like a hole in the trunk for an onboard generator used to power lights and reinforced shock towers, was recently happened upon by Vintage Mustang Forum member Fede Garza. An acquaintance had purchased the car from a private party and originally indented to modify it. After a little research, he changed his mind.
While nobody at Warner Brothers has unequivocally said, “Yes, this is the car,” Garza did post a VIN that allegedly matches one of the cars used in the movie. He also had Ford expert and Barrett-Jackson consultant Kevin Marti come down and inspect the vehicle. Garza has since made a Facebook posting calling the car “authentic” and has announced that it will be heading back to America for restoration.
[Images: Warner Brothers]
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- MaintenanceCosts Gorgeous, even if the W124 coupe is even better. Too bad about that paint color, though.
- Fred I don't know about those big screens. Is there a way to minimize the display, so it's not so distracting? Especially at night the glow doesn't make it easy for me.
- Arthur Dailey Toronto Blue Jays' games are only available on AM radio. As I am 'on the road' quite often when the Jays play that is my only option for listening to the game. So an AM radio is something of a 'must have' for me.
- JMII My brother tracked one of these for several years... it will embarrass other sports cars. He sold it to someone who still rips it around on track days. Given my previous VW experience I wouldn't touch it but these are surprising quick and handle well for hatchback credit going to a decent AWD system. $16k seems crazy, but Rs aren't that common and this one appears to be in great condition and seems well sorted.
- Arthur Dailey I meant the grille and the profile along the passenger area. Look closely and it is reminiscent of the Journey.
Good to hear it's been found and will hopefully be saved, I vividly remember seeing Bullit in the theater, I wasn't aware of the chase scene until it occurred . . I seem to recall a thread a while back that had collected links to various ' best ever ' movie chase scenes..... . Some were really obscure, I enjoyed wasting lots of time watching them . . -Nate
I totally dig the 67/68 Mustang! I would agree that the chase in the movie was the coolest ever filmed at that time. Positioned the appropriate distance from the screen, one could get a bit of the actual feel of being in the car. Thanks for the article.