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If a vehicle is special enough to arguably be a main character of an award winning film, it’s no surprise that the Gran Torino car is so widely celebrated.

For the uninitiated, the Ford Torino was produced between 1968 to 1976, with the first being the 1968-1971 Torino GT. While this model was initially developed from the highly successful Fairlane, the name change was introduced by Ford’s ‘bigwigs’, who wanted a more aggressive option for drivers who had outgrown the smaller pony car in the showroom. Although the Fairlane remained in production for a number of years and was marketed as the economic option, the two-door Torino GT would initially slide in to replace the top two trim levels of the Fairlane.

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On its first release, the Torino featured a powerful Cobra V8 engine that was accompanied by flashy finishes with the trim, molding, and newly designed wheels, and mirrored the Ranchero with the front end design – and it was sexy. Although style went on to receive numerous upgrades and tweaks throughout the years, the original design largely stuck around until 1970. However, these days the arguably most famous version of this model is the 1972 Gran Torino used in its namesake film. 

How The Car Became The Main Character In “Gran Torino”

With its chunky good looks, the completely redesigned 1972 Gran Torino was a no-brainer to portray an old-school muscle car in a modern day Hollywood blockbuster. When the new Gran Torino car replaced the old Torino GT as the new top-of-the-line model of the badge series, it’s revamped body was purposefully designed to involve the very essence of speed. 

It’s this symbolism that arguably made it the perfect choice to share the silver screen with none other than Clint Eastwood. Portraying a bitter war veteran well past his prime in the 2008 film “Gran Torino”, the car of choice all but resembles a physical metaphor of Eastwood’s former self – handsome, slick, powerful and a force to be reckoned with. 

One of the key themes behind “Gran Torino” is making sacrifices for the ones we love, with the film focusing on the reality of an old man of strong character who lives in an atmosphere of racial conflict and gangs. However, as the film progresses, how we define masculinity in today’s world is also a topic that comes to light, with the Gran Torino playing a key role in conveying both of these messages, particularly given it’s attempted theft. 

However, the Gran Torino car is a vehicle that needs no introduction, which is perhaps why this particular model was chosen. In the film, Eastwood’s character treats the car with care and even an affection that not even his children receive, as he had actually helped to build Gran Torinos during his own time as an employee at Ford. This is arguably a nod to the same passion of the classic car community, and presents a visual representation that many of us can relate to – that an old car can in fact represent an era or an entire lifetime. 

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Despite its relatively short lived production tenure, the legend of the Gran Torino car has remained. With prices in Australia often commanding over $50,000 for fully restored models, it’s safe to say that this vintage muscle car’s popularity doesn’t look to be declining any time soon. 

Your Guide To Everything Classic Cars 

Finding a fellow vintage auto enthusiast can feel a bit like finding a needle in a haystack, but rest assured that Wayne’s Garage understands the thrill more than most. Having spent forty years collecting anything and everything from matchbox cars to hub caps, he’s successfully followed his passion to source, collect and stock beautiful and low mileage classic automobiles from around the world. With extensive experience in the automotive industry, it was only a matter of time before Wayne expanded on his love of vintage, iconic vehicles to share his knowledge and passion with the public.

Although his passion is for automobiles built before 1978, with a particular love for Buicks, Cadillacs, Lincolns, Oldsmobiles and even Fords, Wayne is just as passionate about the stories of the owners. Just like the cars, he has found that his fellow classic car enthusiasts all have wildly different attractions and logic behind their passion or hobby, and this often translates into how the car is presented. If it’s even remotely different, rare or just plain unusual, Wayne will overcome the relevant logistical and geographical challenges of bringing the cars to his showroom in Australia. 

Wayne’s Garage is a showroom conveniently located at Seventeen Mile Rocks, that specialises in the restoration and sales of vintage automobiles. If you’re on the hunt for Brisbane classic cars – quite simply, Wayne is your man. If you would like to arrange a viewing or inspect any other of our classic vehicles, please get in touch with us today.