Iconic Cars From The Movies

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Dick Van Dyke and Sally Ann Howes with the iconic Chitty Chitty Bang Bang in 1967. PA
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Dick Van Dyke and Sally Ann Howes with the iconic Chitty Chitty Bang Bang in 1967. PA

The history of the silver screen is littered with classic cars. Here we round-up some of the most memorable cars from the movies. 
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Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

Cars don’t get more iconic than Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, star of the 1968 movie of the same name. Several cars were made for the film, but only one of them actually worked.

After filming wrapped, Chitty was to spend 30 years taking part in charity races and meeting fans. A Los Angeles collector then bought the car but found he couldn’t fit it in his garage (Chitty is a whopping 17 feet long). So Radio 2 DJ Chris Evans bought it from him for a reported £500,000.
The James Bond submarine car used in the Spy Who Loved Me. Sean Dempsey/PA
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The James Bond submarine car used in the Spy Who Loved Me. Sean Dempsey/PA

The submarine car from the Spy Who Loved Me

James Bond films are known for their fantasy cars – Bond himself most famously drives an Aston Martin DB5, but he’s also been known to get behind the wheel of a BMW 750iL and a Ford Mustang Mach 1.
 
But possibly the coolest Bond car ever is the submarine car from the Spy Who Loved Me. The car was a Lotus Esprit, which after filming ended wound up in a storage unit in Long Island, New York.

Last year a small-business owner bought the contents of the storage unit blind for $100, hoping to double or perhaps triple his money. He sold the car at auction in London – for $964,000.
The Batmobile arrives at the UK premiere of Batman Begins. PA
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The Batmobile arrives at the UK premiere of Batman Begins. PA

The Batmobile

The Batmobile is one of the most instantly recognisable cars in movie history, and it’s had many incarnations over the years. The original 1966 Batmobile was based on a futuristic concept car, the Ford Lincoln Futura, which was handmade in Turin.

Recreated for the TV series, the car was a huge and instant success. Three fiberglass copies were made and appeared at car shows all over the world, so that fans could get up close to the real thing.
 
Over the years the Batmobile has evolved. In the Dark Knight series, Christian Bale drove a 2.5 tonne customised Lamborghini Tank that was wider than a truck. Meanwhile the latest Batmobile – built for upcoming Ben Affleck flick Batman vs Superman – is even more military-like than previous incarnations.
3 original 1960's Mini Coopers used by Paramount Pictures to promote The Italian Job. Ian West/PA Wire
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3 original 1960's Mini Coopers used by Paramount Pictures to promote The Italian Job. Ian West/PA Wire

The Italian Job Minis

The car-chase scenes in The Italian Job are arguably the best in the history of cinema.

A total of 16 cars were used during filming, but afterwards they were scrapped and left in Italy. Just three boxes of parts, including bonnet straps, lamp bars and number plates, were shipped back to England.

They sat here, doing very little, until 2006, when a 42-year-old car fanatic from Newcastle bought the boxes for £6,000 and set about restoring the cars to their original conditions. He did an impeccable job and they’re now insured for £55,000 each.

What's your favourite car from the movies? Let us know.
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