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    Ben Field
    No. 1... with a #1968-Bullitt ! / #1968-Ford-Mustang-390GT-Fastback / #1968 / #Ford-Mustang-390GT-Fastback / #Ford-Mustang / #Ford / #Steve-McQueen

    Classic American was approached with an offer we just couldn’t turn down: to be the sole UK publication to feature one of the original (probably the most wellknown one in terms of time on screen) Mustangs used in Bullitt on its return visit to San Francisco. Over the years we’ve featured various Bullitt tributes and replicas, but never one of the original cars and certainly not shot on location in San Francisco.

    I hope you enjoy the feature. The film is always voted one of the best car chase sequences of all time and it’s amazing to hear how the car led such a pedestrian and ordinary life in New Jersey after its brief blaze of glory on the silver screen.

    Another favourite article of mine this month is Jim Maxwell’s feature on retro automotive accessory advertising, which starts on page. Even after all these years being around American cars and Classic American magazine, it’s still a real buzz to find out/discover things I never knew, such as the snippets in Jim’s feature. For instance I was aware Trico manufactured wiper blades, but I never knew Trico stood for Tri-Continental, or that the firm was based in Buffalo, New York. Likewise, while I was aware of 3M as a company, I didn’t know that the ‘3M’ stood for ‘Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing’ or that Delco was actually an abbreviation of Dayton Engineering Laboratories Company…

    As you read this, the finals of this year’s Footman James & Kingstown Shipping Car of the Year competition will have taken place, but this magazine will have already gone to print; however, if you take a look at the Classic American website and/or Facebook page, you’ll be able to find out who won after the competition has finished!

    The original Bullitt Mustang at the launch of the #2019-Ford-Mustang-Bullitt-Special-Edition .
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    When Bullitt came out with Steve McQueen I wanted to know everything about the Ford Mustang. The same with #Knight-Rider – I remember tuning in just to see the car. These days most people don’t notice the cars the stars are driving, but they seem to know the ones in the video games, like Gran Turismo 6, which just came out.

    / #Steve-McQueen / #Bullitt / #1968-Bullit / #Gran-Turismo-6 / #1966-Oldsmobile-Toronado / #Ford-Mustang / #Oldsmobile-Toronado / #Mark-Donohue

    The idea that concept cars make their first appearance in video games makes a lot of sense. A movie opens and it makes $50 million and is a huge success. A video game launches and makes 700, 800, 900 million dollars on the first day because people want to see those vehicles.

    In the movie you tend to think of your self as James Bond or Steve-McQueen , whereas in the video game there is no human element, it’s just the car. So you are the driver, as opposed to that person, and you can make it do whatever you want it to. And the video games are way more accurate than the movies. There’s a whole cottage industry of picking out all the little mistakes in various car films. The only thing missing from games now is the gasoline and rubber smell. When you watch a game like Gran Turismo 6, they’ve gone to great trouble to recreate the sounds exactly. A friend of mine got one of the driving games and it has Mark Donohue’s Camaro in it. And he couldn’t last past a certain time, he just couldn’t get any better. Then he read Mark Donohue’s book about how he set up his Camaro and his tyre pressures and things, and he put all the stats from the book into the video game. He was lapping faster. So you actually are driving the car.

    When I got to drive a Jaguar at the Nürburgring, I practised on the video game. Braking points, the Karussell, all of it was exactly as it was in real life. Not that I had it memorised, but it meant that the track was not foreign to me when I got there.

    The amazing thing to me is the amount of time people dedicate to it. If you’r e going to sit down and play a game it’s the same as watching a two-hour movie. You sit down and pick your team, your tyres, and your car. It’s hours of information and input. You’re racing against some guy in Thailand and he’s racing against some guy in Finland. It’s a huge commitment.

    My #1966 #Oldsmobile Toronado is in Gran Turismo 6. They did a great job with the Toronado. The attention to detail is amazing because you just take for granted that when a car goes by you see a shadow. You don’t realize how many hours went in to making that shadow. When they did the car, they came to my garage with a secret camera and they put the car in the middle of the floor with a big tent over it. It was some kind of 3D camera but I don’t know what it does because I wasn’t allowed to see it. It is not just the look but the feel they have replicated well. The heaviness of the big sedan is matched in the game just great.

    I had the #Mercedes-Benz Gran Turismo concept car in my garage recently. It’s stunning. The front of that car looks like an SLR from the ’50s. The pure design of it I thought was really really good. I thought it was a clean design, it looked masculine, and it looked Mercedes-Benz. It looked futuristic yet it looked like it could also be a real car.

    People ask why Mercedes would go to all that trouble for a video game. When you say it like that it sounds disdainful, but when you use the words they used, ‘Gaming Console’, it suddenly sounds more important. It is a gaming console that is played by millions of people. It’s why games, not movies, are seen as the future.

    If a car is in a movie it might only be in the shot for a second. There was some hype about Lexus in that movie with Tom Cruise, but he got in the car and drove away in a second or two, before you even realised what he was driving. In a video game you know your car is going to be seen by exactly the people you’re trying to reach – young men, aged 12 and up. Guys who will soon be getting their licence. And what car are they going to want to drive? The car they lusted after in the video game. It’s very clever marketing. In the future I think you will see people going to dealerships and taking virtual test drives in a simulator. An actual seat from the car and the dashboard in front of you and you’ll ‘drive’ this ‘car’ instead of taking it out on a real test drive. You’ll go on a virtual test drive to see if you like it. I think that will happen. We will see cars reach reality, having started on video games. We already have. Every major car company will do this.

    ‘WHEN I GOT TO DRIVE AT THE NÜRBURGRING, I PRACTISED ON THE VIDEO GAME SO THE TRACK WAS NOT FOREIGN TO ME’
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    Film star Ford breaks cover / #Ford-Mustang-GT / #Ford-Mustang / #Ford / #1968 / #Bullitt / #1968-Bullitt / #Steve-McQueen / #2019-Ford-Mustang-Bullitt / #2019-Ford-Mustang / #1968-Ford-Mustang-Bullitt / #2019 / #2018

    Following the re-appearance of a genuine ‘Bullitt’ movie Mustang last year, a second car has just come to light / Words John Simister

    Ford revealed a ‘Bullitt’ version of its latest Mustang at Detroit, in Highland Green and suitably sparse in its detailing, to mark the 50th anniversary of the film. The launch was special because the new car (with a hefty 475bhp and an aural output to match) was joined on stage by an original 1968 film car that hasn’t been seen for nearly 40 years.

    Two Ford Mustang GTs were used in Bullitt, one for stunts, the other – known as 559 from the final digits of its chassis number – for everything else. Octane reported last March on the discovery of the battered stunt car in a scrapyard in Mexico. The other, the so-called ‘halo’ car, is the one that finally broke cover at the North American International Motor Show.

    While 559 was never lost in the way that the stunt car was, it led a reclusive existence after Steve McQueen’s film. It passed through two post-movie owners before being bought in 1974 by Bob Kiernan, who resisted all McQueen’s efforts to buy it for himself.

    In 1977 #McQueen made his last bid to buy the car, offering to find Kiernan an alternative Mustang ‘if there is not too much monies involved with it’. But Kiernan didn’t want to deal. His wife used 559 to commute to work until the clutch failed in 1980, and for two decades it sat in the Kiernans’ garage, moving house from time to time with its owners.

    In 2001 Bob and son Sean decided to make the Mustang driveable again and took it to pieces for overhaul. The engine was rebuilt in 2008, but Bob died in 2014. It was only when Sean subsequently contacted Mustang authority Kevin Marti to authenticate the car for a possible film project that it came back on the radar.

    Having reassembled 559 for Marti’s inspection and restarted its engine on 4 July 2016, Sean was then advised to call insurance company boss McKeel Hagerty to get 559 on the US’s National Historic Vehicle Register. Then Ford got involved, culminating in the sensational re-appearance at Detroit.

    The Mustang is still unrestored, and bears all the signs of its film role including camera mounts, a sticky residue on the tacho from a label warning McQueen not to over-rev, and a large amount of filler down one flank following an incident in filming. McQueen’s granddaughter Molly – who was shown 559 last year – drives a new Bullitt in a race with a (new) Dodge Charger for a parking space for the new model’s TV advertisment.

    Like his father, Sean Kiernan has no plans to part with the Mustang: ‘My dad and I always talked about enlisting Ford to bring our car back into public view.’

    Top and above Kiernan’s car didn’t do the stunts so is amazingly original; marks on tacho are from warning label to keep McQueen honest; Shelby snake on horn push.
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    / #Steve-McQueen / #1956 #Jaguar-XKSS - Jay Leno's Garage / #Jaguar
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    Some new screenshots of rare and famous cult movie of #1968 , #Bullitt , where #Dodge-Charger and #Ford-Mustang made a real landmark chase each other, well, #Steve-McQueen as always sample superhero and style in a frame.
    Steve McQueen As ' #Bullitt '
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