Not long ago we discovered just how intense demand for the vehicular veterans of The Fast and the Furious has become. Six years ago one of the nine Toyota Supras used during filming went for $185,00 at auction, which seemed like a lot at the time, but much more recently, another ex-F&F A80 went under the hammer for a whopping $550,000.
So, it’s anyone’s guess what kind of bonkers figure this latest four-wheeled piece of Fast & Furious memorabilia will go for. It’s Brian O’Connor’s famed Mitsubishi Eclipse, driven by the character until its unceremonious end and eventual replacement by the even more recognisable Supra.
According to Craig Lieberman, who served as a technical advisor for the first film and its ‘2 Fast 2 Furious sequel’, six Eclipses were acquired for the production. Mecum Auctions describe this as ‘Buck Car No.35’, meaning it’s either one used for mounted shots or another used for microphone rigging. In a 2018 video on his YouTube channel, Lieberman said the whereabouts of the former was unknown, while the latter was thought to be owned by Dennis McCarthy, the ‘picture car coordinator’ for F&F films from Tokyo Drift onwards.
The Eclipse was central to many of The Fast and the Furious most infamous technical errors, which came about when Lieberman’s advice was ignored. Who can forget “danger to manifold,” and the escaping floor panel which came just after? In the story, the Eclipse meets its fate when shot up by Johnny ‘Too Soon Junior’ Tran and subsequently destroyed via an unrealistic nitrous explosion. The car used for that was ‘Stunt 1’, which now resides in its burnt, bullet-holed state in a Las Vegas museum.
The ‘buck car’ seen here on the other hand still looks to be in great condition. The auction page is light on details, but judging by the under-bonnet shot it uses the naturally-aspirated 2.0-litre 420A engine rather than the pokier, turbocharged 4G63T. That means you get all of 140bhp, which is gently pushed to the through wheels via a slushy automatic gearbox. A 10-second car this is not. Unless we’re talking about 0-60mph times.
It certainly looks the part, though, thanks to a Robocar body kit and a sizeable APR rear wing. It wears seven-spoke wheels that either match or closely replicate the Axis Model Se7en rims from the Hero 1 car, wrapped in Toyo Proxes tyres.
Included in the sale is a certificate from Cinema Vehicle Services confirming the car’s identity. We’ll be waiting a while to see how much it goes for - it won’t be auctioned until Mecum’s Kissimmee, Florida sale, which takes place from 6-15 January.