Steve McQueen Indian Chief, Car And Truck To Be Auctioned

McQueen40IndianMcQueenseatedIndianItems previously owned by legendary Hollywood actor Steve McQueen have been consigned to Bonhams’ Annual Classic California auction at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles next month. This is not the first time items from the McQueen family have been entrusted to Bonhams and once again this leading auction house has been selected to represent possessions previously owned by the King of Cool.

Steve McQueen’s personal Chevy pick-up truck and Indian motorcycle are being added to the roster as well as the special edition Mustang owned by son Chad McQueen. 1940 Indian Chief. This iconic American motorcycle was used by Steve as his personal “Hollywood bike” and was originally sold as part of the McQueen estate in Las Vegas in 1984. 1949 Chevrolet 3100. Presented by McQueen’s widow, Barbara Minty McQueen, and never before offered for sale, this original unrestored pick-up has been left untouched and in the same state as when last driven by the silver screen idol in 1980. 2001 Ford Mustang Bullitt Edition Number 1 in the series and dubbed “McQueen 1”, this special edition Mustang – built in commemoration of the world’s greatest chase movie, Bullitt – was presented by Ford to Steve’s professional race car driver son Chad. It is in factory original and unmodified condition and has covered only 2012 miles since new.

The Bonhams’ auction at the Petersen Auto Museum on Wilshire Boulevard in L.A. will take place on Saturday, November 14th. Buyers interested in participating in this renowned sale, either remotely or in person, may register to bid by contacting usacars@bonhams.com. Additional sale information and illustrated catalogs are available through Bonhams (Picture Indian 40 copyright “Bonhams & Butterfields”. Picture McQueen astride Indian 40 copyright “Barbara Minty McQueen”)

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17 Responses to “Steve McQueen Indian Chief, Car And Truck To Be Auctioned”


  1. 1 Eric Hundin Oct 31st, 2009 at 6:33 pm

    I found your blog on MSN Search. Nice writing. I will check back to read more. Eric Hundin

  2. 2 Mike Kiwi Tomas, Kiwi Indian M/C Co Nov 1st, 2009 at 8:42 am

    The full size picture of the 1940 Chief shows it with 1947-53 Indian script tank emblems. The picture with McQueen sitting upon the bike shows it with 1942-46 tank emblems. The emblems have 2 totally different mounting methods requiring a changeout in tanks. Shame to change something if it were authentically a McQueen bike.
    I recall getting McQueens Indian chopper going which currently resides in J&P’s museum. Nothing was changed or cleaned on the bike as we preserved it in its natural history.

  3. 3 Bigalyts Nov 1st, 2009 at 11:42 am

    I Love a Sharp Guy, and one that know’s his stuff ! When those 2 traits are the same Person, that’s what we call a Expert, or at least a go to guy. Go Mike!

  4. 4 J Nov 1st, 2009 at 7:19 pm

    Nice call Mike! Just busted that auction…. His stuff should have been sold off already long ago- they’re just picking at scraps now…..

  5. 5 Mike Kiwi Tomas, Kiwi Indian Motorcycles Nov 1st, 2009 at 10:49 pm

    McQueen had a ton of bikes but only a few he actively rode. Naturally when it comes to selling a bike many want to claim it’s a McQueen bike because of its increased value. The one bike that was McQueens favorite and has been documented as such as his Indian chopper that is in J and Ps museum in IA. I’m not saying that this 1940 is not but the change in tank years and emblems sends out a big red flag for me.

  6. 6 Pat Simmons Nov 2nd, 2009 at 4:27 am

    That was the first thing I noticed when I saw the picture. I remember the Indian chopper that was at the auction. I had seen it prior to the auction, on another occasion, as well. The one with Steve in the picture doesn’t appear to be that bike, as I remember it. It seems to be a different bike. Maybe the new owner was trying to return this bike to it’s proper original tank emblem. I understand that temptation. But, if it was good enough for Steve… I don;t think I’d want to change it. I would hope there would be some credible documentation, naturally, if this is being advertised as “previously owned by the King Of Cool, himself”.

  7. 7 Gina Woods Nov 2nd, 2009 at 5:51 am

    Too bad this auction is not televised like some of the others, I’d like to see if these move….esp the chevy…I wonder what they will start it out at? Isn’t this the annual big one? I’ve heard they get a few bikes?

  8. 8 rainbowwarrior24 Nov 2nd, 2009 at 7:53 am

    I agree that this would be a good auction to watch on television. I wish I had the funds to go to the auction. With this economy one can consider themselves lucky to buy a cup of coffee!!!

  9. 9 Troy Nov 2nd, 2009 at 9:32 am

    Is it possible that Mr. McQueen had more than one white Indian?

  10. 10 Mike Corbin Nov 2nd, 2009 at 12:59 pm

    Thanks Kiwi, we need to be sharp !!

  11. 11 J Nov 2nd, 2009 at 3:30 pm

    From what I’ve heard, the tank was rusted out and needed to be replaced, ergo the change and ergo the difference Kiwi Mike noticed. Best to confirm with the auction house though.

  12. 12 Eric Nov 2nd, 2009 at 5:13 pm

    The machine in question was sold at the 1984 Steve McQueen estate auction as lot no. 651. J is correct regarding the tank being replaced, probably prior to the recent stellar results for McQueen property at auction. The original title, in the name of Steven T. McQueen, confirms both the frame and engine number match the bike. The title is signed off ‘Ziffrin’-Kiwi Mike at least will know who Ziffrin is. The original certificate from the 1984 sale is with the machine. Contacting the auction house is a useful way to get information on these things.

  13. 13 Mike Kiwi Tomas, Kiwi Indian Motorcycles Nov 3rd, 2009 at 9:37 am

    Good research to confirm its authenticity. It would have been nice to change the tanks out with exactly the same year/style tanks in order to preserve its McQueen authenticity. Its a very cool bike. Great contribution by everybody.

  14. 14 Charlie Nov 5th, 2009 at 12:13 pm

    Besides the fact that the 1984 auction certificate comes with the bike, so does Steve McQueen’s Calif. ownership certificate, registration card, license plate, and other documentation. And the frame and engine numbers match the title. There are also numerous pictures of the bike on the cover and in Barbara McQueen’s “The Last Mile” and in Matt Stone’s “McQueen’s Machines”. I am the current owner of the bike, having bought it in 2001. As far as the gas tank question, when I bought the bike, the gas tank had already been replaced due to rust, and while it might have been tempting to replace the tank again to have the same emblem shown in the McQueen pictures, that decision will be left up to the future owner.

  15. 15 Lyle Nov 5th, 2009 at 4:03 pm

    Good running, cosmetically fair Chiefs should fetch about 15 to 18K.

  16. 16 steve cascio Feb 12th, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    i think minty just wants his money …..she looks like a golddigger….

  17. 17 steve cascio Feb 12th, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    GEORGE CARSO WAS HIS ATTORNEY……..HE HAD A FEW BIKES LIKE STEVE s

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