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The Star Cars of Hollywood at VMT

October 20, 2018 @ 9:00 am - January 8, 2019 @ 5:00 pm

We’re rolling out the red carpet for The Star Cars of Hollywood, a new exhibit that spotlights famous automobiles made famous in our favorite movies and TV series.

The exhibit opens on Saturday, October 20, and will run through early January.

The VMT and the Taubman Museum of Art are teaming up to bring a full day of car design and movie nostalgia to downtown Roanoke. The Taubman exhibit DRIVE! Iconic American Cars and Motorcycles is on display through February 3, 2019.

  • On October 20, both the Virginia Museum of Transportation and the Taubman Museum of Art will open at 9 am — one hour earlier — so guests have extra time to enjoy the two exhibits. Both museums will discount admission $1.
  • Rise and shine with Roanoke Valley Cars and Coffee at their car show outside the Taubman Museum of Art from 9 am to noon.
  • A double-decker bus, courtesy of Grand Home Furnishings, will shuttle visitors between the Virginia Museum of Transportation and the Taubman Museum of Art throughout the day.

Appearing at the VMT:

1959 Cadillac Miller-Meteor Ambulance
Ghostbusters (1984)

The 1959 Cadillac Miller-Meteor Ambulance was converted to a ghostbusting machine for the original 1984 blockbuster comedy. Designer Steve Dane outfitted ECTO-1 in two short weeks. The car became known for its exaggerated wind-foiling fins and specter-fighting vibe. Only two cars were designed and built for Ghostbusters, and the VMT will have one of them on display.

Striped Tomato
1974 Ford Gran Torino
Starsky and Hutch TV series (1975)

In the 1970s, America watched detectives David Starsky and Kenneth “Hutch” Hutchinson keep the streets of Bay City, California, safe from crime in the Starsky and Hutch TV series. The red-and-white striped Ford Gran Torino became one of the most recognized cars in America during the show’s run.

General Lee
1969 Dodge Charger
Dukes of Hazzard movie (2005)

General Lee — sometimes known as “The General” — was made famous by Bo and Luke Duke as they outran and outmaneuvered crooked politician Boss Hogg.  Known for its signature Dixie-playing horn and welded-shut doors, a Dodge Charger “General” starred in every television episode and the 2005 movie. Its legendary stunts and long jumps forced the studio to purchase hundreds of Dodge Chargers, most of which didn’t outlast filming. The General scheduled to appear at the VMT was one of the few Chargers that survived the filming of the 2005 movie.

1970 Dodge Charger
Fast and Furious 4 (2009)
Fast Five (2011) 

Dom Toretto’s 1970 Dodge Charger in the Fast and Furious film franchise ignited a new generation of motorhead enthusiasts. It’s the ultimate muscle car — fast, loud, and not forgotten. The featured exhibit car was driven by Fast and Furious stars Vin Diesel and the late Paul Walker.

The Black Beauty
1966 Chrysler Imperial Crown
The Green Hornet (2014)

The Green Hornet’s weapon-equipped Chrysler Imperial Crown sits low to the ground, sports tinted windows and green headline covers and has hot-rod wheels. Of the 26 Chrysler Imperial Crowns built for the movie, only three survived in pristine condition — one of which will be on display at the VMT.

1950 Mercury Monterey
Cobra (1986)

Cobra was released in 1986 to lukewarm reviews and a blockbuster box office. While the movie’s plot is all-but-forgotten, people remember the scene-stealing 1950 Mercury Monterey driven by Sylvester Stallone. The Monterey is considered to be one of Hollywood’s coolest movie cars and an example of how a motorhead could turn a luxury car into a muscle car.

1981 DeLorean DMC-12
Back to the Future (1985, 1989, 1990)
*On loan from Travis Begg

A similar model was used in all three Back to the Future films as a plutonium-powered time machine invented by eccentric scientist Doc Brown.

“Jenny” the Camaro
1967 SS/RS Camaro.

While this car was never in a movie or television series, it should have been. “Jenny” the Camaro was owned by the original Little Old Lady from Pasadena, the go-granny-go made famous by The Beach Boys song. Her real name was Betty.

In 1967, Betty purchased this 1967 Camaro for speed and comfort.  She special-ordered the Super Sport and Rally Sport options, a 295-horse 350 with a Powerglide transmission, and other unusual options. Betty named her new car “Jenny” and drove it 137,000 miles.  In 1992, “Jenny” was parked, set on blocks, and covered.

Adopted at birth, Zach Straits met his birth mother in 2006. The self-described “car nut” learned of his Grandma Betty and her “Jenny,” its history, and lore. In 2012, “Jenny” moved to Zach’s home in Virginia and is known as the most-storied barn find ever. A future restoration is planned.


October 20, 2018 @ 9:00 am
January 8, 2019 @ 5:00 pm


The Virginia Museum of Transportation
303 Norfolk Avenue
Roanoke, VA 24016 United States
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(540) 342-5670