Holy Barrett-Jackson Batman

The Barrett-Jackson car auction in Scottsdale brought 4.6 million for the original and perhaps most famous Batmobile ever. The price tied the highest bid for a movie car ever brought in the auction’s history matching the bid for the Aston Martin driven by Sean Connery in Goldfinger. The Batmobile came with memorabilia from the original owner’s personal collection, including the Batphone.  Phoenix businessman and car collector Rick Champagne, who grew up watching the 60’s TV series, ultimately won the car following an intense bidding war on January 19th.

Famed Hollywood car customizer George Barris designed the Batmobile in 1965 at the request of 20th Century Fox.  He used his own 1955 Lincoln Futura concept car, which he had recently purchased from Ford Motor Company for $1. Barris invested three weeks and $15,000 in the Futura to create the iconic car driven by Adam West in the 1966 debut of the TV series, Batman. Barris retained ownership of the original car for over 4 decades until he decided it was time to auction it at Barrett-Jackson on Friday.

From its debut in Detective Comics #27 in 1939 to the 2012 release of The Dark Knight Rises, the Batmobile has been a crime fighter in and of itself. Unlike most superheroes, the famous caped crusader and boy wonder don no superpowers to stop diabolical villains from destroying the world. “The car had to be a star on its own. And it became one,” Barris said. The Batmobile Documentary traces the history of this most famous superhero.

And, since the original Batmobile is road legal, one never knows… we just might witness a little history as it fights crime on the streets of Phoenix.

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