'$505,600' classic GM Futurliner bus is still looking for a new home
A rare piece of vintage transport failed to meet its minimum bid at a recent online auction.

US coach company Peter Pan Bus Lines had hoped to make $2.5m for its 1939 Futurliner, but only attracted a top bid of $505,600 with eBay when the sale closed on Monday.

Just 12 Futurliners were made by General Motors and only nine are thought to remain.

Designed by Harley Earl, they made their first appearance at the 1939 New York World's Fair and continued to offer a glimpse into the future to people throughout Central and North America up until 1956, as part of the Parade of Progress programme.

William V Sinico, the general manager of Peter Pan CoachBuilders, the company's restoration branch, told US news source the Republican: "Each had a theme. One might teach about jet engines or the kitchen of the future.

"We want to try and get it into the hands of a museum or someone who is going to use it more," he added, prior to the auction.

Rather than seats, the buses featured a stage, and light tower that emerged from the roof.

Peter Pan Bus Lines acquired this particular Futurliner, numbered 7, in 1998 and spent two years restoring its stage and replacing the engine, brakes and drivetrain.


This Futurliner attracted bids of up to $505,600 but failed to sell

But why didn't this Futurliner meet its asking price? After all, another of the nine sold for $4.1m at a Barrett-Jackson auction in 2006.

We expect that the current economic climate may have had something to do with it, and one must also factor in that many of the vehicle's original parts had been replaced, which significantly devalues a classic vehicle.

And, of course, perhaps bidders were put off by the impersonal nature of an online sale. After all, you can't beat that personal touch.

 

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