When "Smokey and the Bandit" earned $127 million at the North American box office, making it the second-highest grossing movie of 1977 ("Star Wars" coming in at No. 1, of course), the 1977 Pontiac Trans Am followed suit and became one of the hottest selling cars of the year.
Four Pontiac Trans Ams were said to be used during the production of "Smokey and the Bandit," but those cars are unobtainable. For example, the car used for the bridge jump didn’t have enough horses to power itself through the scene, so it was also equipped with a booster rocket. That car along with one other was totaled during production, and according to auction house Barrett-Jackson, the damage was so severe on the remaining cars that they were also destroyed.
Interior of the 1977 ‘Smokey and the Bandit’ Pontiac Trans Am.
But have no fear: On Jan. 30, the 1977 Universal Studios Promo Bandit Trans Am that sold at auction last year will be back up for grabs through Barrett-Jackson at Scottsdale. Collectors will have a chance to own a piece of "Smokey and the Bandit" history when the black V-8 Trans Am crosses the block.
The car has been frame-off restored by McLaughlin Museum, and it has matching numbers documented by Pontiac Historic Services. The auction will include a Universal Studios certificate listing the VIN (2W87Z7N139933), a plaque from General Motors showing the car was used to promote the movie, and Universal Studios maps showing scene locations. The title states Universal Studios Promo, and the sale will be promoted and autographed by Burt Reynolds.