'Fast and Furious' car returning to Volo Museum
Volo Auto Museum officials have bought and sold hundreds of celebrity and film-famous cars in the decades since the museum's 1960 founding.
Never, however, have they so regretted a decision to let one go that they were willing to pay more to bring it back than they made on its sale. Until now. And they're pretty sure Dominic Toretto would approve, as will "Fast and Furious" franchise fans everywhere.
In fact, museum officials are so excited about the imminent return of the 1970 Dodge Charger R/T from 2001's "The Fast and The Furious" -- the hit Vin Diesel/Paul Walker pairing that launched a film franchise dynasty -- that they've undertaken an extensive remodeling project to house it.
"This car is the hero car, one of three Chargers modified for use in the first film, and the only one that wasn't beat up," said Brian Grams, director of the museum.
"We've had close to 100 cars from 'Fast and Furious' over the years, including some other Chargers from the later films. None were as iconic as this car. This particular Charger is as much a cornerstone of that franchise as Vin Diesel (aka Toretto) himself."
The car -- actually a '69 that filmmakers modified to make look like a '70, featuring a false Roots type supercharger blower above the hood -- is on its way back to Volo all the way from a collector's home in Norway. It will be highlighted in a new display on pace to open Dec. 26.
This will be the car's third return to Volo. Museum officials first bought it in 2002, then sold it to a collector in Reno, Nevada, later buying it back from that man and selling it to the Norwegian, who has had it since 2008.
Grams learned the Charger was again on the market this fall when a broker called to inquire about the car's pedigree.
"I told him if the deal he was working on fell through, I would buy it back," Grams said. "I saw it as an opportunity to correct a mistake. This is the ultimate 'Fast and Furious' Charger, and it belongs here where fans can enjoy it."
Renovations are under way to group the museum's three key "Fast and Furious" cars, including Dom's Charger, a Subaru Impreza WRX STI that actor Paul Walker used in his final franchise appearance in "Furious 7," and a 1963 Corvette Grand Sport Roadster featured in "Fast Five."
During construction, half-off admission is available to any visitor who displays at the ticket gate the offer available at the museum's website, volocars.com, or on the museum's Facebook events page. The offer is good through Dec. 23.
The Volo Auto Museum, 27582 Volo Village Road, features roughly 400 classic, muscle and Hollywood cars and more. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Admission is $15 for adults, $9 for children ages 5 to 12 and free for children 4 and younger.
For information, call (815) 385-3644, visit volocars.com or find Volo Auto Museum on Facebook.