The Apple Car Was Real: It Raced at LeMans and Was Sold at Auction for Nearly $5 Million. It Even Had Its Own Toy Replica

The Apple Car Was Real: It Raced at LeMans and Was Sold at Auction for Nearly $5 Million. It Even Had Its Own Toy Replica

Whoever owns the iPorsche can boast of possessing the only car in history with Apple's rainbow apple on its body.

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The Apple Car

People say that Steve Jobs was more of a Mercedes man and that he was crazy about German engines. Although his first love was a red Fiat 850, he showed off his BMW motorcycle for years and then began flirting with luxury cars. In fact, he even hid his Porsche at one time, presumably to ensure he made the right impression.

Jobs' obsession with cars became a status symbol within the company. In 1984, he gave one as a gift to the best Macintosh salesman in the entire company. But the one we're sharing with you today wasn’t a gift. On the contrary, it was sold for $4,840,000, even though someone already wrecked it.

Apple "Competed" in Le Mans, the World’s Most Famous Endurance Race, With an "iPorsche" That Made History

Apple Car racing

According to the official Le Mans website, “On June 14, 1980, the #71 Porsche 935 of Dick Barbour Racing took the start at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the Californian company’s colors.” In 1980, Silicon Valley was the heart of the technology sector. As such, in Cupertino, Jobs and Apple co-founder  Steve Wozniak were two geek deities who boasted of making a career with their young company. So when they got the idea to approach Porsche, it wasn't hard. And that's how Apple's legendary apple of ended up on the two sides of an “iPorsche.”

In the absence of an iCar, this was the big star signed by Apple. A little gem that even became a collector’s toy, in 1/18 scale. On eBay, you can still find it for around $279.99.

But let’s go back to that morning. Three drivers were in the driver’s seat: Allan Moffat, Bobby Rahal, and Bob Garretson. There was one number, the 12th spot on the grid. The Kremer brothers of Dick Barbour Racing had prepared this car to sweep the field once again. Beneath the letters “Apple Computer” was a 6.3-liter, 2-cylinder, flat-six engine with 800 horsepower—750 in the race.

This beast had a well-deserved reputation. In 1979, it won without a hitch, driven by the same team. Unfortunately, they didn’t have the same luck this time, and the Porsche 935 K3 didn’t make history. It had to pull out after 11 hours due to a melted piston.

A Second Life and a Million-Dollar Auction

That didn’t stop it from racing again: That same year, the Garretson team, with Brian Redman at the wheel, won first prize in the 24 Hours of Daytona. Similarly, the trio of drivers featuring Paul Newman—yes, the actor—Dick Barbour, and German Rolf Stommelen won silver at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Before its odyssey in France, the car also participated in other races such as the Sebring, Watkins Glen, and Road America 500, achieving a notable third place. In total, this Porsche 935 participated in seven races.

Apple Car details

That was the end of the iPorsche por a few decades, until 2006. That year, the Hawaiian Tropic team decided to restore the Apple Computer Porsche. The car made a new public appearance appearance 10 years later, in 2016, when its owners sold it at a private auction organized by Gooding & Company on Amelia Island for no less than $4,840,000. It’s, in fact, one of the ten most expensive Porsches ever auctioned in history.

Whoever owns it can boast of possessing the only car in history with the rainbow apple on its body, due to a sponsorship deal that exemplified Jobs’ love of speed.

Images | Digital Tour

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