Hollywood Car Exhibit Set to Launch at Petersen Automotive Museum

The Petersen Automotive Museum is set to present a brand-new collection of some of the most famous vehicles ever to appear in film and television, the museum announced. Opening to the public on March 12, the exhibit will include a diverse selection of cars, motorcycles and custom creations that have starred in popular movies and television series throughout the decades.

A continuation of the museum’s “Hollywood Dream Machines: Vehicles of Science Fiction and Fantasy” exhibit, the new display will incorporate a broader range of vehicles, movies and television series. Included in the space will be vehicles from the blockbuster Black Panther, the trilogies Men in Black and Back to the Future, and the Ghostbusters and Batman series of movies.

Stars of the new exhibit include the 1959 Cadillac Miller-Meteor dubbed “Ecto-1,” originally made famous as the rapid response vehicle for the cast of Ghostbusters. The converted ambulance made multiple appearances in the sequels to the original 1984 hit, including the more recent reboot Ghostbusters: Afterlife. While “Ecto-1” received updates to its appearance over the years, it will display in its original 1984 condition, museum representatives said.

Another Hollywood vehicle making its return is the 1981 DeLorean “Time Machine” from the Back to the Future trilogy of movies. The producers originally chose the DMC-12 as the foundation for the famous time-traveling DeLorean due to its stainless-steel construction and gullwing doors. Multiple versions of the DeLorean “Time Machine” were made throughout the years for the two sequels, but this is the only example appearing in all three films.

“Some vehicles used in television and movies have become just as popular as the stars themselves,” said Petersen Automotive Museum Executive Director Terry L. Karges. “We are excited to display what are genuinely some of the most iconic vehicles from Hollywood’s long and storied history of film and television series production. The unique collection is sure to appeal to fans of movies and television along with any automotive enthusiasts.”

Other notable unique additions to the new exhibit include the Batmobile from Batman and Batman Returns, the intricate Moto-Terminator motorcycle that appeared in Terminator Salvation and the classic 1976 Ford Gran Torino from the Starsky and Hutch television series.

A.J. Hecht

A.J. Hecht is the managing editor of THE SHOP and host of the In Gear with THE SHOP podcast. Have an idea, a tip, or a question you’d like to see answered? Contact A.J. at

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