'Born To Run' Chevy for auction

Bruce Springsteen mentioned the 1957 Chevy in his book Songs.
Bruce Springsteen mentioned the 1957 Chevy in his book Songs.PHOTO: REUTERS

The 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air convertible once belonging to Bruce Springsteen is the first of a fan's collection to be put on sale

NEW YORK • Bruce Springsteen's 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air convertible, referenced in his iconic song Born To Run, is up for auction and expected to fetch several hundred thousand dollars.

Springsteen super fan Michael Crane said on Thursday the auction of the car was the first in the planned sale of his entire Springsteen collection because he wanted to move on from his long love affair with The Boss.

"I've been a fan since I was seven years old. I got to meet Springsteen with the car, which was amazing. But I'm ready to move on in my life and I want to pass the torch to somebody who will enjoy the car and get to drive it," he said.

The 46-year-old, who like Springsteen is also from New Jersey, believes the singer was referring to the car in his 1975 hit, Born To Run, in the line, "I looked out across my hood and saw the highway buckle 'neath the wheels of a gold Chevy 6".

The car is being sold on eBay in an auction that ends on Monday. Bidding on Thursday afternoon was US$200,100 (S$288,677) - below the undisclosed reserve price.

Mr Crane bought the yellow soft- top with orange flames on eBay in 2006 and it was once exhibited at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland. It has registration and insurance documents in Springsteen's name and is in running condition.

Springsteen mentioned the car in his 1998 book Songs. "In 1970s New Jersey, the car was still a powerful image. That summer, I bought my first set of wheels for two thousand dollars. It was a 1957 Chevy with dual, four-barrel carbs, a Hurst on the floor and orange flames spread across the hood," the rock musician wrote.

Mr Crane, a real estate developer, started collecting Springsteen memorabilia in 2006. He has amassed a collection of handwritten lyrics, guitars and personal effects that has been appraised at more than US$7 million.

He plans in the coming months, however, to dispose of all of it.

"I am selling the whole collection. My love affair with Bruce has become more real.

"I'm moving on to some bigger projects. I started a non-profit and I am raising money for orphans and widows now and it's kind of where my life has taken me," Mr Crane said.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 17, 2016, with the headline ''Born To Run' Chevy for auction'. Print Edition | Subscribe