|GEN11 on CHITTY CHITTY BANG BANG|
The photo above shows the original road going version of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang together with Chitty Chitty Bang Bang's owner Pierre Picton.
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang was the magical car from Ian Fleming’s 1964 novel, that was brought to life in Ken Hughes 1968 film written by Roald Dahl and produced by Albert R. Broccoli. The film starred Dick Van Dyke, Sally Ann Howes, Heather Ripley & Adrian Hall. Pierre Picton maintained the car during filming in England, France and Bavaria and was at the wheel for some of the driving sequences as a double for Dick Van Dyke.
Several cars were created for the Chitty Chitty Bang Bang film including the fully functional road-going car above. The car was designed by the film's production designer Ken Adam, and cartoonist and sculptor Frederick Rowland Emett. The cars were built by Alan Mann Racing in 1967. The cars were based on a Ford Zephyrs and the road going version was fitted with a Ford 3.0 V6 engine and automatic transmission.
The road-going version was registered with the 1957 cherished Bury registration of GEN 11 which Ian Fleming had managed to acquire and which can be read as GENII or 'GENIE'.
Pierre Picton owned the original Chitty Chitty Bang Bang from the 1970's until 2011 when the car was then sold to a New Zealand owner for £495,415 (us$805,000) with Pierre keeping the GEN 11 registration.
In total, six or seven Chitty Chitty Bang Bang film/prop cars were produced including;
the road going version (above)
a second, smaller road-going version
a transforming car
a flying car
and an engine-less version for trailer work
The genuine film/prop cars are commonly referred to as 'Chitty' cars. Most had engines added after filming was completed, and were used to help promote the film around the world.
Of the 'Chitty' cars;
the second road-going version promoted the film in the USA and ended up on display in a Museum in Miami, Florida, before vanishing for a number of years, only to turn up at the Cars of the Stars Museum in Keswick in 2000. The Museum closed down in 2011.
the transforming car promoted the film in Australasia. It was at the 1970 Motor Show, and toured the country until 1974. In the 1980's it was fitted with a GM Holden engine. In 1991, it was sold to Cars of the Stars Museum in Keswick. In 2000 it went to Barbara Broccoli's EON productions. EON refurbished the car and used it to promote the stage musical. This is the car which was famously banned from the Norwich Parade as it was not in possession of an MOT certificate.
the hover-car was destroyed after filming.
the flying car also promoted the film in the USA and was present at the New York opening. It was later sold to The Cavalcade of Cars exhibit in New York. It was then a feature at a Chicago Restaurant 'The Retreat'. In 2007 it was sold to Ralph Spencer of Florida.
the trailer car was also acquired by Pierre Picton in the early 1970's. In the mid 1970's it was sold to Heathfield Wildlife Park. In 1978 it was sold to The Rotunda in Folkestone. In 1980 it was purchased by Anthony Bamford of JCB fame. Mr.Bamford often loans it to the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu (with GEN 11 plates on display).
The final road version (is this the 2nd road-going version from those listed above, or was this the 7th vehicle? please let us know if you can help to confirm this!?), which started out as the number 3 racing car which crashes at the start of the film, has since been painstakingly reconstructed by Gordon Grant using many of the original components from racing car no.3 and was registered with the 2011 DVLA auction mark 11 GEN. (That registration has since been registered to a more ordinary vehicle.)
Due to the popularity of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, several replicas have been produced over the years, including one by Tony Green, for which Tony acquired the cherished registration number GEN 22.
Contrary to popular belief, well known DJ & TV Presenter Chris Evans has never owned either the original car or registration mark, nor did he own one of the other Chitty cars. The car he purchased (and has since sold) was a replica model (based on a 1936 Ford) that was built by Gordon Grant and wore the road legal 772 YUJ re-registration. (It was registered as WGG 5 when (W.) Gordon Grant owned it.)