Driving fast and defying authority could only have been done in muscle cars like these.
They were some of the most defining and memorable cars ever to have graced the Silver Screen. These classic muscle cars were (and still are) badass in every way and were actually affordable during their time. Today, unfortunately, automakers and movie studios are more interested in marketing new (and usually expensive) cars whether they’re cool or not. But there was a time when product placement hadn't been invented yet and movies featured the coolest cars out there. Here are five of our favorites.
This is what looking cool while driving fast and dangerous is all about. The sight of Steve McQueen in "Bullitt" tearing up the streets of San Francisco in a dark green 1968 Ford Mustang while chasing the bad guy in a black Dodge Charger R/T is nothing short of cinematic perfection. For car nuts, anyway. The result was probably the best car-chase scene of all time, propelling the movie into iconic status in our books. We could literally watch it dozens of times without ever getting bored. It was so iconic, in fact, that Ford would later offer Mustangs in the same color scheme bearing the original movie's name.
Performance took a hit in the mid- to late- 1970s due to growing emissions controls and an oil crisis, but that didn’t stop Burt Reynolds and his mustache from having a good time in a 1977 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am in "Smoky and the Bandit". Nicknamed Trigger in the film, a total of four of these Firebirds were built specifically for the movie and all were damaged during production. After completing the film, Burt Reynolds - then at the height of his career - actually went out and bought his own black Trans Am which hit the auction block back in 2009.
A white 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T driven by a delivery man who lived on a never-ending adrenaline rush to help escape his haunted past turned out to be the biggest star of the 1971 film "Vanishing Point". With Kowalski behind the wheel and high on amphetamines, he attempts to deliver the white muscle car to San Francisco from Denver in a very short time only to be chased by cops through the desert. Both Kowalski and the Challenger become the ideal picture of defying authority. If you haven’t seen the film, go rent it. Like, right now.
The 2000 remake of the 1974 film "Gone in 60 Seconds" didn’t feature the original’s 1973 Ford Mustang Mach 1. Instead, lead car-thief Randall "Memphis" Raines had a 1967 Shelby Mustang in his sights. Although both Mustangs were code named Eleanor, the latter one was by far much, much cooler. Want proof? Ever since the film came out there’s been a seemingly endless amount of Eleanor replicas, and Hot Rod magazine listed it as one of the 100 most influential vehicles in the history of hot rodding.
It was on the small screen from 1979 until 1985 and it went to the big screen in the 2005 feature film. The Dodge Charger that featured in "The Dukes of Hazzard" became most famous for its assortment of stunts and crazy jumps that featured in just about every episode. Known as the General Lee, the classic Dodge was actually a pool of 256 Chargers that were used for filming the show, of which 17 are still supposedly around today. Word has it that one stunt Charger was used per episode because they were forced to permanently retire due to excessive structural damage from all of those airborne stunts.