The legendary American actor and filmmaker Tom Hanks recently auctioned off one of his personal cars – the 1974 Polski Fiat 126p for sale on the American auction website Bring a Trailer.
The highly acclaimed actor, known for his performances in movies like Forrest Gump, Splash and Cast Away had announced that all the proceeds from the auction of his tiny little automobile will go towards the empowerment, support, and honour of American military caregivers through the Elizabeth Dole Foundation and its Hidden Heroes Campaign. The Fiat 128p was finally auctioned off at a price of $83,500 (approximately Rs 64 lakhs).
Tom in the announcement video for the sale of the car said that in 2016, he travelled extensively over Europe, where he posed with all of the antique automobiles he came across on the streets, claiming to be the owner and about to take the wheel. And some of the vehicles from his posts were Fiats and this drew the attention of Monika Jaskolska, a Polish aficionado. She then urged the citizens of Bielsko-Biala, where the Polski Fiat was manufactured under licence, to gather funds for a bespoke birthday present for the iconic actor.
Following which this 1974 Polski Fiat 126p was tailormade for actor Tom Hanks and handed to him in 2017 on behalf of the city of Bielsko-Biala, Poland. The car was refinished in white by BB Oldtimer Garage of Bielsko-Biała, Poland. Tom’s 126 features a custom green interior and is powered by a rear-mounted 594cc twin paired with a four-speed manual gearbox. It also includes chrome bumpers, rear fender vents, rectangular headlights and taillights, aluminium and wood interior trim, typewriter-key switchgear. It also has some beautiful off-white 12″ steel wheels mounted with 135/80 Debica Passio tires, and a spare is stored in the front trunk compartment.
The vehicle also comes adorned with some custom badging like “Bielsko-Biała for Tom Hanks” and “One of One”. Additionally, the interior was refurbished by Carlex Design of Czechowice-Dziedzice, Poland, and features front bucket seats and a rear bench trimmed in green leather with black trim to go along with matching door cards and dashboard. Appointments include three-point seatbelts and aluminium trim. Satchels with special embroidery are attached to the front seatbacks, the dash and door-lock knobs were handcrafted from vintage typewriter keys, a “Forrest Gump” quote is displayed on the dash top, a toy dog is perched in the rear window, and Tom Hanks signed the driver-side door card. The floor beneath the black carpeting is signed by employees of Carlex Design.
Recently in November of 2021, the brake fluid was flushed and the brakes were bled in addition to the installation of the axle boots and axle dust covers. Service performed in November 2021 also included cleaning and adjusting the carburettor, cleaning the fuel tank and lines, changing the oil, and replacing the fuel filter, the battery, and the ground cable. The transmission fluid was also refreshed and a drain-plug sealer was installed in preparation for the sale along with the repairing of emergency lights and turn-signal lights. As part of the sale, driving gloves, spare spark plugs, and recent service records will accompany the car. Currently, the car has a 300-mile odometer reading however, the actual chassis miles are unknown.