“The largest sports car of its generation” up for auction: the 1970 Porsche 917K driven by Steve McQueen in the movie “Le Mans” that will sell at Sotheby’s in August for $ 18.5 million.
- Collectors will bid on the famous car used by Steve McQueen in the 1971 film ‘Le Mans’
- The actor drove the iconic 1970 Porsche 917K through the finish line in the classic film
- Images of the car that participated in the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1970 were used in the film.
- The car has been fully restored to its former glory ahead of next month’s auction.
The 1970 Porsche 917K driven by Steve McQueen in the classic movie “Le Mans” will go up for auction next month and could fetch more than $ 18 million.
It is expected to become the most expensive Porsche of all time, it is one of the most illustrious cars in racing that competed in the grueling race and appeared with McQueen in the film.
McQueen led him as he crossed the finish line.
The 1970 Porsche 917K that crossed the finish line at Steve McQueen’s “Le Mans” will fetch more than $ 18 million at auction next month.
If sold for $ 18.5 million, the car would be the most expensive Porsche ever sold, beating out another ‘Le Mans’ Porsche McQueen that sold for $ 14 million in 2017.
1970 Porsche 917K Specifications:
Top speed: 220 mph
0-60 time: 3 seconds
Output: 600 horsepower
Length: 162.2 inches
Width: 78 inches
Height: 37 inches
Source: Maximum speed
The sports car represents the culmination of Porsche engineering as the company sought its first race victory in 1970, according to the auction site.
The 917 was one of Porsche’s most successful race cars, dominating European racing and the North American Can-Am Series, according to the Motor Authority.
The car was driven by David Hobbs and Mike Hailwood, who were able to secure third place after the first four hours of the race until Hailwood rejected a pit stop when heavy rain hit the field.
Hailwood eventually lost control of the vehicle on lap 49 and slid into another car. The Porsche suffered minor damage, but it was enough to get it out of the race.
However, the sports car took center stage in the film, as it led McQueen to victory and immortalized the vehicle in the eyes of viewers.
A Sotheby’s spokesperson said: “During the golden age of motorsports, the most famous and courageous drivers were sometimes equated with rock stars or Hollywood celebrities. Only for the rarest examples, this same equation turned out to be true for the race cars themselves.
“Permanently preserved on celluloid in perhaps the most accurate depiction of sports car racing ever attempted on screen, this example co-starred in Steve McQueen’s 1971 seminal film Le Mans, using footage taken during the Le Mans race from 1970 »
Steve McQueen was just 50 years old when he died of a heart attack in 1980 while undergoing treatment for cancer.
McQueen died of a heart attack in 1980 in Juárez, Mexico, in the middle of cancer treatment.
After Le Mans, the chassis was factory repaired and restored as a Porsche 917 Spyder with a lightweight open body intended to compete in the 1972 and 1973 InterSerie European Championship, according to RM Sotheby’s.
Olivier Chandon, a famous French racing driver and heir to Moët et Chandon champagne, acquired the Porsche in 1974 and kept it until 1988, when it was sold to American collector Mike Amalfitano, according to RM Sotheby’s.
The current owner, whose identity was not disclosed, bought it for nearly $ 4 million in 2010, and has since restored the car to its original, seminal Le Mans coupe specification in Gulf livery, according to RM Sotheby’s.
The car will be up for auction and on display in Monterey, California, August 13-14.
This is not the only McQueen ‘Le Mans’ car for sale. Another Porsche sold for $ 14 million at a California auction in 2017.
In early 2020, McQueen’s iconic 1968 Bullitt Mustang sold for $ 3.7 million at the 2020 Mecum Kissimmee auction, and it stands as the second most expensive Ford Mustang sold in the world.
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