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Long-Lost 'Grease' Hot Rod Found... for Sale!

Meriah Doty
Yahoo Movies
January 29, 2014

Want a renegade car from the original "Grease" film?

The Scorpions "Hell Chariot" — that flame emblazoned hot rod that was so deftly defeated by Danny Zuko (John Travolta) in an off-road race — has been fully restored and is up for auction on eBay.

A 1949 Mercury, it is just one of 48 cars that were customized for the famed 1978 movie musical, stuntman and auto body expert Eddie Paul told Yahoo Movies on Tuesday. He would know: He built all of them in two weeks!

"I didn't even know who John Travolta was," Paul remembered of the infamous gig — his first-ever movie project.

When it came to making those "Grease" cars sing, Paul found himself under the gun. "The filmmakers were in a pinch," he said, recalling that he was called in as a last ditch option after the first guy they hired took the job money and ran.

"We had two weeks to do all of it," he said. But he made his ridiculously tight deadline with the help of a crew hired on the fly. "When we delivered the last car, the paint was still wet."

The Mercury that's being auctioned was originally a hardtop that Paul chopped into a convertible. "I actually made two of them," he said, explaining that backup cars come in handy for these sorts of films. "Back then I'd pay $500 to $600 for a [hardtop] car," he said. His reason for choosing hardtops? "I didn't want to ruin a real convertible."

The hot rod suffered neglect over the years and was found last year in extreme disrepair outside of a Paramount Studios lot.

"These cars are used for lots of different movies," Paul, who has worked on cars for "The Dukes of Hazzard," "xXx" and "Gone in 60 Seconds," said. But he was able to positively identify the Hell Chariot by some rushed "bad workmanship" that was unique to the car.

Now, with some extra TLC, the hot rod is back. And Paul fully approves of the revamp: "The new owner got a guy to restore it exactly as it was in the movie."

Hey Travolta, here's another one to add to your classic car collection.

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