1958 Chevy Impala From 'American Graffiti' Going Up For Auction

Sep 24, 2015 01:37 PM EDT | John Nassivera


Fans of the classic comed-drama film "American Graffiti" will be happy to hear that the 1958 Chevrolet Impala that appeared in the movie will soon be up for auction.

The customized vehicle, which was first owned by Ron Howard's character Steve Bolander who loaned it to his friend Terry "The Toad" Fields, played by Charles Martin Smith in the 1973 film, will be available at Hollywood Auction 74 from Sept. 29 to Oct. 1, .

 "American Graffiti" enthusiast Kip Pullman says that director George Lucas's co-producer Gary Kurtz actually bought the car in the Los Angeles area because the movie required a car with a tuck-in-roll interior, which the Impala already featured, .

The car was bought by Mike Famalette of Vallejo, Calif. in 1972 after filming ended. Famalette managed to get the Impala for $285, which was under the $325 asking price. Features at the time included a 4-barrel 348 and a three-speed manual transmission, while the car had a 327 with six Strombergs in the movie.

Pullman said that Famalette used the car as a daily driver and replaced the drivetrain twice, first with a 283 and Powerglide and then with an LT-1 and Powerglide, according to Yahoo! Auto.

The Chevrolet was then placed in storage for almost 25 years until Famalette's daughter Ashley decided to replace its engine with a 348 Tri-Power and a 3-speed turbo-hydro automatic transmission for a school project. Ashley also wrote a paper discussing the significance of a positive influence a father has on his daughter, receiving an "A" for her work.

Pullman added that Famalette has kept the vehicle in the same condition as when he bought it. "His reason for this, he explains, is that he makes a modest living and fixing minor blemishes just cost too much," he said.

The 1958 Chevy Impala, which was the only one used in "American Graffiti," currently has a TH350 automatic transmission, Super Chevy reported. The car is estimated to cost between $800,000 and $1,200,000 when it crosses the block next week.

The Impala is the latest Hollywood vehicle to be put up for sale, following Steve McQueen's 1952 Chevy pikcup truck in August and the original batmobile from the 1960s Batman TV show two weeks ago. 

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