Original Batmobile Sells for $4.62 Million to a Guy Named Rick Champagne
As if we weren’t already jealous of Rick Champagne for having the smoothest last name of all time, he is now the proud owner of our childhood dream car. Way to go, Rick; you’ve officially got it all. Super happy for you. Really.
An executive at a logistics company in AZ, Rick had a toy model of Adam West’s infamous ride as a child. His winning bid at the Barrett-Jackson classic car auction in Scottsdale, AZ only set him back a cool $4.62 million, which is most likely chump change for a man with a last name that’s a synonym for luxury.
His wife, Caviar reported that she is excited to take family drives in the new “beater,” as she called it: “Our two sons, Solid Gold (age: 8) and Private Jet (age 14) Champagne can’t wait until it’s time for their personal assistants to teach them how to drive.”*
We’re not bitter, honest.
George Barris is the man responsible for customizing the 1955 Lincoln Futura on a $15k budget after purchasing it for $1 from Ford. It took him 15 days of work at Barris Kuston Industries, his auto shop in North Hollywood, and has been on display in the shop since the end of the show in 1968. Times are hard, George, we get it. We just sold our TV to pay our rent.
The Ford Futura was a concept car created and built completely by hand in 1954 by Ford Motor Company’s design team, in the Lincoln styling department. The 19-foot-long touring beast had only two seats and featured a bubble top. It was unveiled in 1955 at the Chicago Auto Show, in a color Batman would never have picked: Frost blue.
One year later, Barris was hired to customize the car for TV, adding highlights such as bullet-proof plexiglass windshields, oil squirters made from sprinkler heads, the Bat Ray; a set of dual 450-watt laser beams), and the Bat-O-Meter, which was kind of like a police scanner, but for crooks.
“I wanted it to be as big a character as the actors,” said Barris, shortly before the auction. Many of the infamous cars of 1960s TV are also the work of George Barris, including the Munster Koach and the jalopy from ‘Beverly Hillbillies.’
*We made this part up, because we’re jealous.