What you’re looking at here is the most expensive Ford Mustang in history. It might look a fairly humble brute on first glance, but a closer look at the number plate should help you understand why it just went under the hammer for an astonishing $3.74 million (£2.88m) at Mecum Auction’s Kissimmee sale.
Yep, it’s that Mustang Fastback - the Highland Green one Steve McQueen drove in Bullitt, a film which contains one of the greatest car chases of all time. Two were used during production - 558, which had to do all the arduous jumpy, powerslidey stuff, and 559, the hero car reserved for Mr McQueen.
It was sold to a Warner Bros employee in 1968, who sold it on to a police officer in 1970. It changed hands again in 1974, with Robert Kiernan becoming its custodian. It remained with the Kiernan family ever since and was used as a daily driver for a good chunk of its life. It had been thought lost until it resurfaced in time for the reveal of the latest limited-edition Mustang Bullitt.
559 has had some restoration work, although this was mostly limited to getting it running again. Otherwise, it’s original, right down to the camera mounts and the blanking plates where the reverse lights used to be, which were removed at McQueen’s behest.
On occasions the car sold, it did so for only a few thousand dollars each time. In 2020, clearly, it’s a little more sought after.
The buyer hasn’t been identified, although he or she will no doubt be tucking 559 away in storage, probably never to turn a wheel again. But wouldn’t it be nice if they use it as a daily too? You never know.