She passed it on as an 18th birthday gift to John Strasberg, the son of director and acting coach Lee Strasberg and his wife, Paula. The legal transfer of the vehicle took place months before Monroe’s death on August 5, 1962.
“Once in a while something comes along that has a powerful magic about it, a charisma, because of everything and everyone associated with it,” Darren Julien, the president and CEO of Julien’s Auctions, told World Entertainment News Network.
“This wonderful black Ford Thunderbird is not only part of automotive history but comes with an aura of glamour, romance and tragedy of a true Hollywood legend. It will make the centrepiece of any classic car collection and be an object of fascination to millions,” he added.
The unnamed current owner said: “I found the vehicle in lovely show condition. Nevertheless, the car has received a frame-off restoration to its exact original appearance by Prestige Thunderbird, Inc., of Santa Fe Springs, California.
“Finding this car, a classic two-seater model, after 56 plus years of its unknown whereabouts, was a singular event. No other car has been located and documented as owned by the incomparable Marilyn Monroe.”
The car features “a raven black exterior with an elegant black and white interior.”
It has a 312 cubic-inch V-8 engine and a carburettor generating 225 horsepower, Ford-O-Matic automatic transmission, power steering, power brakes, power windows, and power seats. It comes equipped with a black canvas convertible top and a ‘porthole’ windowed hardtop, rear fender shields and American Classic 670R15 radial tires, reports Mid-Day.