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Reagan Library Hosts Petersen Automotive Museum Cars

“Amazing Automobiles” exhibit runs Oct. 28, 2014 to May 1, 2015.



SIMI VALLEY, Calif. — Whether it’s the 1913 Mercer Raceabout, long considered the first race car, the Cadillac Papal Parade Phaeton known in pop-culture as the “Pope-mobile” or the car Danny Zuko races in “Grease,” cars play a memorable role in history. And now these cars are all on display at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum as part of the new “Amazing Automobiles: The Ultimate Car Exhibit.” The exhibit is in partnership with the Petersen Automotive Museum to showcase some of The Petersen’s most stunning and memorable cars at the Reagan Library while The Petersen is closed to the public for renovation. Most of these cars come from The Petersen’s vault and are not seen by regular museum-goers.

“This partnership with The Petersen Museum is a wonderful way to showcase their extraordinary collection in Ventura County while their museum is closed for renovation,” said John Heubusch, executive director of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation. “Whether you’re an enthusiast of the movies, history or just beautiful cars, this exhibit is a must-see.”

“This is a fairly rare collaboration between two world-class museums,” said Terry Karges, executive director of the Petersen Automotive Museum. “The ‘Amazing Automobiles’ exhibit allows Reagan Library visitors to see several significant cars from the Petersen collection, and the Heads of States cars will be appropriately displayed near Air Force One.”


The cars will be separated into themed galleries for Hollywood, History and Heads of State.

In the Hollywood Gallery, cars used in television and movies, as well as ones owned by celebrities, will be displayed Oct. 28, 2014 through May 1, 2015, including:

•1956 XKSS owned by Steve McQueen (one of only sixteen built)
•1971 DeTomaso Pantera owned by Elvis Presley (which still has the three bullet holes from when he shot the car)
•Batmobile driven by Michael Keaton in “Batman” (1989) and “Batman Returns” (1991)
•1946 custom “Grease Lightning” Ford used by John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John in “Grease” (1978)
•1966 Ford Thunderbird driven by Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon in “Thelma and Louise” (1991)
•2001 custom Honda Roadster driven by Devon Aoki in “2 Fast, 2 Furious” (2003)


In the Heads of State Gallery, cars built for Heads of State in multiple countries will be on display from November 17, 2014 through October 2015, including:

•Pope John Paul II’s 1998 Cadillac Papal Parade Phaeton
•1942 Lincoln Limousine (ordered the day after the attack on Pearl Harbor and used by Presidents Roosevelt and Truman)
•1938 Packard Super 8 Parade Phaeton used by Juan and Evita Peron, President and First Lady of Argentina

In the Historic Cars Gallery, rare, iconic and historic cars will be displayed January 31, 2015 through May 1, 2015, including:

•1981 Gold-Plated DeLorean DMC-12
•1952 Ferrari 212/215 Inter Spyder
•1913 Mercer Raceabout
•1939 Bugatti 57C Atalante

The Reagan Library is located at 40 Presidential Drive in Simi Valley, Calif.. Public hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. The Museum is only closed on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Years Day. For Museum Admission fees, please visit


Museum exhibit tickets may be pre-purchased at For more information, call (800) 410.8354 or visit

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