Auction house Barrett-Jackson has sold the Batmobile that was used in the very first Batman TV show for $4.6 million.
Based on the Lincoln Futura concept that bowed at the 1955 Chicago Motor Show, the Batmobile was created in 15 days with a budget of $15,000. The work performed by Barris and his team was widely acclaimed and the car became an instant icon that has inspired every Batmobile since.
Built in late 1965, the Batmobile is powered by a Lincoln-sourced 390-cubic inch V8 engine. It sends power to the rear wheels via a push-button automatic transmission.
The droptop is equipped with a long list of Bat-gadgets that helped it become the most advanced car on television in the 1960s. No longer functional today, these include a Bat Ray Projector, a Detect-o-scope, a Remote Batcomputer and two ten-foot long parachutes that help the driver perform 180-degree turns.
Barris has held on to the Batmobile since the show ended in 1968. Now 87-years old, the customizer walked on stage in Scottsdale, Arizona, to bid his famous creation before passing it on.
"It's difficult to part with,” said Barris in an interview with the Los Angeles Times. “I hope the new owner has as much fun with it as I did.”
The buyer's identity was not disclosed.
Photos courtesy of The George Barris Photo Collection.