Porsche 917 from "Le Mans" film heading to auctionEnlarge Photo
Porsche's 917 is an iconic racer that planted the automaker as a force to be reckoned with in endurance racing decades ago. With that said, it's easy to understand why the cars are so sought after, and when they do surface for sale, it's a big deal—that makes this 917 extra special.
This Porsche 917 was the star car of Steve McQueen's "Le Mans," a film in which the actor portrayed a factory Porsche driver racing in the 1971 24 Hours of Le Mans. The story behind this 917 is pretty special since the filming process required the crew to enter a vehicle into the race in order to secure footage of the car at the track. Factory driver Jo Siffert offered up his 1970 917 for film duties—chassis number 917-024—and his example was used as a test vehicle during the actual 1970 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The car remained in Siffert's private collection until his passing. Following his death, the car disappeared and was rediscovered 25 years later in 2001 outside of Paris. It still wore its Gulf livery and the original tires were still present at all four corners. It was dusty, but an icon sat under the grit, nonetheless.
Let us recap: the car is highly sought after, is attached to McQueen, and has actually seen track time at Le Mans. What does all of this mean for a price estimate? It's high, really high.
The 917 is scheduled to arrive at Gooding and Company’s auction taking place during the 2017 Monterey Car Week in mid-August. The current estimate is range of $13 million to $16 million. Too much? Good thing a company is working on a much more affordable 917 replica.