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Last Updated: Saturday, 28 April 2007, 12:20 GMT 13:20 UK
McQueen's Ferrari up for auction
Steve McQueen with model Peggy Moffit
Steve McQueen, with model Peggy Moffit, was a car collector
Actor Steve McQueen's 1963 Ferrari is expected to fetch $800,000 to $1.2m (600,700) at auction in August.

Christie's auctioneers unveiled the metallic-brown Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta Lusso on Friday.

McQueen bought the car, with beige leather interior, in 1963 and used it as his everyday runaround for 10 years.

"It's probably the best example of a Ferrari Lusso that's out there on the marketplace," said Christie's Christopher Sanger.

The car will be sold at auction on 16 August at Monterey Jet Center in California.

McQueen, nicknamed the "king of cool" for his portrayals of nonchalant, in-control heroes, was a car collector and racing enthusiast.

"Owned by a man who made the automobile and hard driving an essential component of cool in the 60s and 70s, this Lusso offers a truly unique opportunity for the collector," said Mr Sanger.

McQueen traded the Ferrari in 1973 but left his stamp on the "McQueen Ferrari Lusso", which was acquired in 1997 by restorer Michael Regalia.

Iconic performances

Mr Regalia restored the car back to its original condition, exceeding 4,000 hours of work.

McQueen reportedly performed some of his own driving stunts in films. One of his most famous car chase scenes was in the 1968 film Bullitt.

He is probably best-remembered for his role in The Great Escape, in which his character breaks out of a World War II prison camp and attempts escape on a motorcycle.

Contrary to popular belief, the star did not perform the stunt himself. That honour went to his friend and stunt double Bud Ekins, who also drove in Bullitt.

Following The Great Escape, McQueen earned a best actor Oscar nomination for his role in the 1966 war drama The Sand Pebbles.

He died in 1980 following surgery for lung cancer, aged 50.


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