Three cars of the much missed Burt Reynolds went under the hammer at the Barrett-Jackson auction in Las Vegas, including a 'Smokey and the Bandit' replica
The great Burt Reynolds sadly passed away last month, an actor who played so many iconic parts — frequently alongside similarly iconic automotive costars. Before his death he was in the process of selling cars from his collection with some of the funds raised going to the Burt Reynolds Institute.
The Institute was very close to his heart as it helped acting and film students in achieve their goals. A trio of Reynolds’ cars went under the hammer at Barrett-Jackson's auction in Las Vegas, raising $330,000.
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Unsurprisingly, one of these cars was to be a Pontiac Trans Am of Smokey and the Bandit fame — or at least the closest thing to it. After ‘Bandit’ filming was completed, all of the cars were destroyed at Universal Studios request due to them potentially being unsafe after stunt scenes.
Burt Reynolds and his friend Gene Kennedy made notes on every detail of the Trans Am in order to create an exact replica of the movie cars. Everything from the radio antenna to the iconic livery is identical. Burt couldn’t help but request a few upgrades under the bonnet, though.
Butler Performance parts boost this 400-cubic-inch V8 with a custom automatic transmission in tow to accommodate the extra power. This car’s new owner paid $192,500 to live their Bandit dream.
The next car to hit the auction block was another 1978 Trans Am, but this time a lookalike from the movie Hooper. This bright red V8 muscle car with its ‘screaming chicken’ on the bonnet brought in $88,000. Reynolds has mentioned in interviews of the past that he did much of the stunt driving in Hooper, meaning that he knew how to handle this American beauty.
The final car isn’t actually a car, because it’s a truck. This 1987 Chevrolet R30 pickup is a replica of the one featured in the comic caper The Cannonball Run. In the movie an R30 romped over a moving freight train while attempting to outrun its considerably faster competitors.
This example has had some creature comforts added such as power steering and air conditioning to make life with the 496-cubic-inch V8 Chevy a little easier. It netted $49,500, bringing the total for the three cars to an impressive $330,000.
Interestingly, there was another car at the auction that Reynolds had an affiliation with, another Trans Am used to promote the USFL team Tampa Bay Bandits on the launch of the series. It sold for $49,500 and is the only survivor of a an identical pair used.