Ferris Bueller’s Day Off faux Ferrari just sold for $337,500

One of the replica cars from the 1986 classic John Hughes movie, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off just sold for $337,500 at Dallas-based Heritage Auctions.

The price is a bargain since the real 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spyder is currently the most expensive movie car ever sold at auction, and sold for a whopping $17,160,000 in 2016. 

In the movie Ferris Bueller (Matthew Broderick) decided to fake an illness and take the day off of school, much to his sister’s (Jennifer Grey) dismay. Once he successfully convinced his doting parents that he was sick, he made his way to his depressed best friend Cameron’s (Alan Ruck) house in Highland Park, known locally as the Ben Rose House. After some begging, pleading, and straight up manipulation, Ferris was able to convince Cameron to not only go on a Chicago adventure with him, but to borrow his father’s extremely rare 1961 Ferrari 250 Spyder as their mode of transportation. The car is so rare that only 56 of the real 1961 Ferrari 250 GT California were ever made in that particular body style.

The car played a key role in breaking Ferris’ girlfriend Sloane (Mia Sara) out of the suburban Glenbrook North High School with Ferris impersonating her father. From there, the three truant students headed off to the city to engage in shenanigans only after handing the Ferrari over to two relatively sketchy parking valets, who have since been named Sam and Victor, played by Richard Edson and Larry “Flash” Jenkins

While Ferris, Sloane, and Cameron assumed the Ferrari was safely tucked away in a parking garage on West Madison Street at Wells Street, the three took a whirlwind tour of the city.

Ferris, Sloane and Cameron visited the Sears Tower, now known as the Skydeck of Willis Tower. Ferris impersonated the sausage king of Chicago at the swanky and fictional “Chez Quis.” The teens also took in a baseball game at Wrigley Field and squeezed in a visit to the Art Institute of Chicago.

Somehow, Ferris made his way onto a float in the annual German-American parade on Dearborn Street much to the delight of Cameron and Sloane. While Ferris was lip syncing Danke Schoen and Twist and Shout to thousands of screaming viewers, the sketchy valets, Sam and Victor were off having their own adventure in Cameron’s dad’s Ferrari. The two managed to have the car back, just in the nick of time. 

Cameron noticed that the car had an additional 175 miles on the odometer, which plunged him into a catatonic state in fear of what his father would do when he discovered his son had taken his precious super rare, mint condition car out without his permission and racked up over 100 miles.

Back at Cameron’s house, Ferris desperately tried to fix the situation by putting the car up on blocks and running the car in reverse. When Cameron realized there was no way to change the odometer, he threw a tantrum, kicking and damaging the body and bumper of the car. After he settled down, he casually put his foot up on the car and the weight knocked the car off the blocks and went flying through the floor to ceiling windows and plummeted to the forest floor below them. 

Of course, Hughes would not destroy a car worth tens of millions of dollars, even back then! 

Hughes had originally planned on the vehicle being a Mercedes and the script read, “The door goes up and light streams in to reveal Cameron and Ferris looking at a Mercedes AMG.” Based on the timing of the film, many have speculated that the car could have been a Mercedes-Benz 450SEL 6.9.

Someone from the film’s production, perhaps even Hughes, himself saw a photo of a replica of the ’61 Ferrari GT in a magazine. The replica model was called the GT Spyder California, built by Neil Glassmoyer and Mark Goyette at Modena Design and Development. Paramount liked the car they saw so much that they leased one from Modena Design and bought two more. 

Only one of the replicas actually ran at the time and that was the one the mischievous valets launched in the iconic “jump scene.” That car was returned to Modena Design, repaired from the damage it sustained from the filming of that scene, and has changed hands several times, last selling in 2020 for $396,000.

Cobra Kai creators Jon Hurwitz, Hayden Schlossberg, and Josh Heald recently teamed up with writer Bill Posley and Paramount to create a spin-off of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off titled Sam and Victor’s Day Off which will tell the same day adventure, from the perspective of the two valets who took Cameron’s father’s red Ferrari for a pleasure ride.

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Known as the “crash car,” the car that plummeted out of Cameron’s glass garage never had an engine or drive-train and still to this day does not. According to Heritage Auctions, the car was rebuilt as a display piece following the movie’s production. It consists of a fiberglass body bolted to a rolling chassis with cosmetically finished interior with tan vinyl seats, tan carpeting, matte black fiberglass dashboard with instrumentation and wood-trimmed steering wheel replete with replica “prancing horse” logo at center. Tires are mounted on chrome wire wheels. Being a prop, the hood has no hinges and rests in place. Both door latches are present but need adjustment. The trunk lid lacks a latch. The front right headlight lens is present, but is cracked and remains loose; the rear passenger side taillight lens is missing. The vinyl seats were reupholstered and the red paint was re-sprayed following production.

Following the release of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Ferrari sued Modena Design & Development (as well as other replica builders). The matter was settled out of court when Modena agreed to make some minor changes per the Italian automaker’s specifications. Replica production then resumed for a few more years and the company made 50 faux Ferraris from 1985 to 1989.