Calling all treasure hunters! Over the years, there have been a number of classic cars that have seemed to disappear clean off the face of the Earth! Luckily, our friends over at Select Car Leasing have put together a map of the last known locations of these 20 lost classic cars!
How much are these missing classics worth altogether? Oh, I don’t know… just $200 million! So, if you have a pension for adventure and automotive history, listen up! Because these are the stories of the 20 missing classic cars!
Oldsmobile Golden Rocket
The Oldsmobile Golden Rocket looks like something you might see in one of those old sci-fi shows from the 60’s like The Twilight Zone or The Martian Chronicles. It was built in GM’s Motorama period when they were coming out with some ridiculous concept cars.
The 1956 Golden Rocket came with a 275 horsepower Rocket V8 mated to a Hydramatic auto transmission, and the body was made entirely of fibreglass!
As cool as this car was, no one knows if it still exists or not. If you happen to have a Golden Rocket sitting in your garage right now, speak up!
The Plymouth Fury is not only a badass classic muscle car, it was also once the star of a movie. That’s right! A 1958 Plymouth Fury, or actually 20 of them, was used as the villain in the 1983 psychological thriller Christine.
Out of the 20 cars that were in the film, only four survived production. Three of those were sent out for promotional campaigns, and one was bought by a private collector from a junkyard for $900! But out of those three that went on the road for promotions, one went to the Volo Museum, one went to a private collector in Florida, and the third… well, that was sold to someone in the UK, but no one’s been able to locate it in decades! Let’s hope it’s not on a murderous rampage… Christine Part 2!
The particular Amilcar CGSS we’re talking about is one that was owned by Isadora Duncan, who is often known as the Mother of Dance. The famous dancer and her boyfriend took their 1927 CGSS out for a ride one day, and somehow her silk scarf got intertwined in the car’s spokes. The result was an accident that killed them both.
After her death, no one really knows what happened to this deadly driving machine. Maybe it’s better off lost…
BMW Garmisch Bertone
The 1970 BMW Garmisch Bertone was a concept car that BMW developed for Italian carmaker Bertone. After being presented at the Geneva Motor Show in 1970, the car mysteriously went missing.
I guess BMW’s attempt to pay homage to the legendary Italian carmaker didn’t go all that well. Until 2019, that is! That’s right, BMW took another crack at it and built a full reproduction of the lost Garmisch Bertone concept and presented it at the Geneva Motor Show!
Cadillac La Espada
The La Espada was a concept car built by Cadillac back in 1954. This car had some serious style with its jet fins, four headlights, and wraparound windshield. It seems that Cadillac drew heavily from this design for the El Caminos of 1957 and 1958. And I can see why!
Unfortunately, the prototype went missing after being sold to a private party. Whoever the owner was rarely drove it, eventually sent it to a scrapyard, and it was never seen again.
Back in the 1940’s, when custom car culture was just starting to become a thing, the Bettencourt-Zupan Coupe was one of the first custom cars to gain nationwide appreciation, with its rocketship-like style and oversized body. It was even covered in several magazines!
But by the 60’s, the Bettencourt-Zupan had gone out of style. Still, it was bought up by a collector who kept it in his garage, until one day the once-famous coupe was stolen, and has never been seen since.
Duesenberg was the finest in American motors back in its day, and the SJ series featured a supercharged eight-cylinder that was cranking out 320 horsepower. That level of power was unheard of in the 1930’s!
There was only 26 SJs ever made by the company, and while most of them have been located, the chassis number 506 seems to have disappeared from the face of the Earth. Number 506, before it was lost, was presented at the Paris Motor Show and even made it to the Le Mans track.
Some speculate that it was destroyed during a civil war in Algeria, since it was last sold to an Algerian man, but no one really knows.
Cord was an American manufacturer back in the early 1930s. In an effort to promote their Cord L-29, they built a special edition called the L-29 Speedster.
The Speedster was presented at shows in New York and Paris, and then mysteriously disappeared, never to be seen again.
The L-29 Speedster is a one of a kind, and the regular L-29 is a rarity as well, with only about 150 examples left in the world.
Chevrolet Superior Coach
This treasure hunt isn’t just for cars, we got a missing bus on here too! To be exact, the 1957 Chevy Superior Coach covered in multicolored paint that was used in the musical sitcom The Partridge Family in the 70’s.
The bus appeared in pretty much every episode of the show throughout its four seasons, but when the show went off the air, the bus was left to die alone.
It was last spotted in a scrapyard in Los Angeles in 1987, but since then, the bus’s whereabouts are a mystery.
Porsche 550 Spyder
Now, this car is one of the most famous mysteries in car culture, the missing Porsche 550 Spyder that famous actor James Dean died in. In 1955, the 550 Spyder, which Dean lovingly named “Little Bastard”, slammed into a Ford Tudor and went belly up, crushing Dean within it.
The car was later sold to a doctor who ended up running it into a tree and dying in 1956. This Spyder is seriously cursed. Perhaps the strangest part, though, is that in 1960, “Little Bastard” was being transported from Los Angeles to Miami in a locked storage container. At some point, they checked the storage container, and the Porsche 550 Spyder had disappeared into thin air.
To this day, no one knows what happened. However, apparently, a man in Washington reported having seen the car stashed inside a false wall in a building. To verify the story, officials from the Volo Auto Museum in Chicago gave him a polygraph test, and he passed with flying colors. To keep the man and the Little Bastard safe, his identity and the location of the building are being kept secret until attorneys work out some legalities. The car’s probably worth around $5 million today…
The Buick Wildcat was a 1953 concept car that was presented at Motorama, and this car was a masterpiece. Harley Earl, GM’s head of design at the time, created only two of these beautiful concepts, one in white and one in black.
The Wildcats drew a great deal of attention at the 1953 Motorama show. But today, only the whereabouts of the white one are known. There is a story floating around of a GM employee being caught with a black Wildcat in his garage in the 1960’s. But that’s pretty much impossible to confirm.
This particular Shelby GT500 was a 1967 model and was owned by Jim Morrison,the lead singer for the rock band The Doors. Never has there been such a perfect pairing of car and owner.
To match Morrison’s powerful vocals, the GT500 featured a 7-liter V8 powerhouse mated to a manual transmission. The car was gifted to him by Electra Records, and he eventually named it “The Blue Lady”.
It’s rumored that he crashed the car one night and returned to get it the next morning, but it wasn’t there. After Morrison died,the car was impounded, and where it went from there… who knows?
Renault Type CB Coupe De Ville
Now, apparently, and we don’t know for sure, but this car sunk with the Titanic. It was owned by William Carter, who actually survived the sinking of the ship, and somehow convinced his insurance company to pay for the loss of his car.
Now, there is speculation that Carter’s Renault Type CB Coupe De Ville never actually made it onto the Titanic, and that he was just pulling a fast one on his insurance company, but nobody really knows.
James Cameron, the director of the Titanic movie, actually had one of these oldies recreated for the film.
The Chrysler Norseman was a concept unveiled back in the days when the Big Three had a new concept just about every other week. It caught a lot of attention for its lack of B-pillar and aerodynamic roof.
However, it would meet a watery death when it was being transported from Italy to New York for a show. The ship it was on? The famous SS Andrea Doria, which sunk, killing about 50 people, and leaving the Norseman to rest in Davy Jones’s Locker.
Bugatti Type 57 SC
The Bugatti Type 57 SC was nicknamed La Voiture Noire, simply meaning “The Black Car”. In fact, Bugatti actually came out with another car bearing the name La Voiture Noire in 2019, but this time, it’s one-off blacked-out supercar with around 1500 horsepower, and which sold for over $18 million.
The original La Voiture Noire, however, was part of a line of Type 57 SC Atlantic Coupes created in 1934. This particular black coupe was apparently the personal driver of Jean Bugatti. After Jean’s death, it is said that the car was loaded on a train to Bordeaux to save it from destruction by the Nazis. However, when the train arrived, La Voiture Noire was nowhere to be found.
There are three other Atlantic Coupes that have been located, one of which is owned by Ralph Lauren, but the whereabouts of La Voiture Noire are still unknown.
Horch 855 Spezial
Horch was a renowned German automaker created by August Herch, and is often credited as being a direct ancestor of Audi. One of their popular models, the 855 Spezial, was sold between 1937 and 1940 to Ukranian president, Viktor Yanukovych… I’m not going to try to pronounce that…
Anyway, after the revolution in the Ukraine in 2014, the president had to flee the country, and since then, no one knows what happened to the car.
Chevrolet Waldorf Nomad
The Chrevrolet Nomad was also called the Waldorf Nomad, because it debuted at GM’s Motorama which took place at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel. It was pretty much a Corvette station wagon, which is pretty absurd (and awesome) if you ask me.
But after the final Motorama show in 1961, most of the Nomads just sort of disappeared, whether they went to the crusher or are sitting in someone’s garage… we don’t really know!
The Delorean was undoubtedly made famous by the movie Back to the Future, where Doc and Marty get lost in time. However, one of the Delorean DMC-12’s actually used in the movie now seems to be lost as well.
Two of them are sitting at Universal Studios, another was snapped up by a collector from San Jose, one was crunched in a compactor, and two were sold off for parts.
The last one, however, was hanging from the ceiling in a Planet Hollywood restaurant in Hawaii. Unfortunately, that Planet Hollywood shut down, and since then, the final Delorean DMC-12 has been missing.
Aston Martin DB5
Now, there are still Aston Martin DB5s out there, but the particular DB5 that was lost was one that was featured in the James Bond film Goldfinger. And this wasn’t any ordinary DB5, they had this car outfitted with prop gadgets fit for 007 himself, including a functional smokescreen, fake oil slick dispenser, revolving license plate numbers, fake machine guns, and tire-blades.
The car was being stashed at an airplane hangar in Boca Raton, Florida, when it was stolen in 1997 by someone who obviously knew what they were doing. Not a single alarm went off and none of the guards even knew what happened. What we think is that they dragged the car out of the hangar, loaded it onto a cargo plane, and flew away undetected.
Whoever they were, they got a pretty expensive piece of movie memorabilia, because the other identical DB5 that was used for the movie sold at auction for $4.6 million!
Ferrari 357 MM
The Ferrari 357 MM was a built to be a top-of-the-line race car back in its day, and Ferrari only rolled out 26 of these cute little speed demons. The car featured a 4.5-liter V12, and the MM stands for Mille Miglia, a popular open-road endurance race car.
Out of the 26 that were created, 25 have happy homes among Ferrari-loving car collectors. The 26th however, chassis number 0378AM, is nowhere to be found. One of these cars sold at over $9 million back in 2013.
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