25 Greatest Mustangs: Bullitt

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Photo by Neil Jamieson
Neil Jamieson

The most valuable Mustang ever recently sold for $3.74 million. It appeared in the greatest movie car chase ever, featuring Steve McQueen in this exact Highland Green fastback, chasing the bad guys through San Francisco for the 1968 cops-and-mobsters flick, Bullitt.

But Mustang VIN 8R02S125559, a four-speed 390 Mustang GT with the Torq Thrust wheels, had a life after the movies. Frank Marranca, a New Jersey police detective, bought it from a studio employee in 1971 along with a letter certifying its authenticity. Three years later, he sold it to fellow New Jerseyite Bob Kiernan, and it became a daily driver for the Kiernan family. Refusing offers from McQueen to buy back the car, Kiernan eventually parked it in 1980 with 65,000 miles on the clock. Weathered and worn but still appearing more or less as it had on screen, the Bullitt Mustang remained hidden for nearly 40 years.

[Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared as part of the 25 Greatest Mustangs cover story in the July/August issue of Hagerty Drivers Club magazine. You can find the other entries here.]

 

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