Ron Howard’s highly anticipated film RUSH debuts in just a few weeks, and now some of the paraphernalia from the film is starting to hit the open market. This 1979 Renault Estafette appeared in the movie as Niki Lauda’s team van, and it’s being auctioned this weekend by Silverstone Auctions at Laverstoke Park Farm in the UK on Sunday, August 25th. The film chronicles the events of the 1976 German Grand Prix at the Nürburgring, and the 1976 World Championship at Fuji, so naturally, the 1979 Renault is a bit of a continuity error, but in approved Ferrari livery, it definitely looks the part.
Silverstone estimates that the van will sell anywhere between £15,000 and £20,000, which is strong money for a 1970s work van. But there’s a market for both movie cars and for racing workhorses. Here’s a look at prices for a few other vehicles that fit that mold:
1956 Fiat Series 306/2 Grand Prix Transporter
This one covers both the movie car and the authentic racing team vehicle interest groups. It was originally commissioned as a Formula One race team transporter for Maserati. It was briefly used to haul Lance Reventlow’s Scarab racing cars, before it hit the big-time as Carroll Shelby’s race transporter.
Shelby American purchased it in 1962, with the intent of using it to transport Shelby’s team of Cobra Daytona coupes to Le Mans and other stops along the Sports Car World Championship roster in Europe.
In the summer of 1970, it earned its Screen Actors Guild card, playing three roles alongside Steve McQueen in the film Le Mans. It was painted in Ferrari and Renault/Mirage colors before it was finally used as the Porsche transporter, with Gulf liveried Porsche 917s on its ramps.
It sold at the 2012 RM Auction in Monterey for $990,000.
1959 Fiat Tipo 682/RN-2 Transporter
In 1960, this Fiat was the largest member of the Scuderia Ferrari. It was one of two used by the team, converted by Carrozzeria Bartoletti at Ferrari’s behest. The conversions included both a small workshop and sleeping quarters.
After its tour of duty with Ferrari, the van was purchased in 1970 for use in by a Venetian circus promoter, touring all over Italy. Within a few years, it was retired and stored, until it surfaced again 20 years later, largely complete. In 1995, it was purchased by southern California classic car specialists, and sent to a bus specialist in Modena for restoration.
Five years and countless hours of research went into its restoration, and when it was sold at the Gooding Auction at Pebble Beach in 2011, it managed to change hands for $990,000.
1963 BMC Technical Support Vehicle
In the 1960s, BMC’s Competitions Department was on fire, competing in rallies and races all over the world. It needed support vehicles that not only provided space for cars and mechanics, but acted as a rolling advertisement for the program.
The BMC Support Vehicle featured styling by Pininfarina, and had significant styling cues that separated them from run-of-the-mill BMC utility vehicles. Side panels and side windows were unique, as were the long tailfins that appeared on BMC vehicles of the era. The body was constructed of alloy, and had an inner “monococque”-style structure from which the sheetmetal hung.
A Perkins six-cylinder diesel engine provided the power, and a two-speed rear axle allowed it to climb steep grades. The banjo steering wheel had a similar look to those found in MGs and Austin-Healeys from the era. Racing buckets held the driver and passenger in place.
When it was new, this van was part of the MG display stand at the 1964 Chicago Auto Show. RM Auctions sold it in 2010 at its Automobiles of Arizona auction for $55,000.