The Batmobile used by actor Adam West in the original TV series of Batman has sold for $4.2m (£2.6m) at a US auction.
The car was bought by Rick Champagne, a logistics company owner from Phoenix, Arizona.
The 56-year-old, who was just 10 when the high-camp TV series began in 1966, said it “was a dream come true”. The Batmobile design was based on a 1955 Lincoln Futura, a concept car built in Italy by the Ford Motor Company. It was the first time that car had come up for public sale since it was bought in 1965 by car-customiser George Barris for a nominal fee of $1.
Barris then spent $15,000 (roughly £5,370 at the time) to transform it into the famous superhero vehicle, over a period of 15 days. It had a V-8 engine, arguably one of the first in-car phones, and parachutes, which were deployed to help Batman turn sharp corners. Mr Barris told reporters at the auction: “The car had to be a star on its own. And it became one.” …
The Batmobile first appeared in Detective Comics #27 (May, 1939), where it was depicted as an ordinary-looking, red car. Its appearance has varied, but since its earliest appearances, the Batmobile has had a prominent bat motif, typically including wing-shaped tailfins. Armored in the early stages of Batman’s career, it has been customized over time and is the most technologically advanced crime-fighting asset in Batman’s arsenal.