From September 1975 through August 1979, one of television's most popular police action shows was ABC's Starsky and Hutch. Produced at 20th Century Fox, it starred Paul Michael Glaser as Dave Starsky and David Soul as Ken Hutchinson, undercover officers fighting crime in Southern California.
However, their undercover roles were always a little difficult to believe as they sped about the streets of Los Angeles in a highly visible '75 Ford Gran Torino. The car was bright red with a distinctive white spear extending from the front to the rear fenders, and then over the rear of the roof.
The paint scheme was an easy one to duplicate, and soon, there were plenty of Starsky and Hutch replicas on the streets.
But what about the original? Or, rather, the originals - plural - for the show actually used seven of them. (That's common practice with cars on television shows. There are also several duplicates of the Dukes of Hazzard's "General Lee" Dodge Charger and Knight Rider's "K.I.T.T." Pontiac Trans-Am, and of Rockford's and The Fall Guy's GMC pickups.)
We don't know what happened to all seven of Starsky and Hutch's Gran Torinos after the show went off the air, but we can account for one of them. In 1979, it was purchased from 20th Century Fox by Michael Terzano, a 25-year-old barber of Newton, Pennsylvania.
According to Terzano, the car was prepared for Fox by Ford Showcase Productions, a firm specializing in placing Ford products in motion pictures and television shows. Except for the paint, it's a box stock Gran Torino with a 351 powerplant, and Terzano has kept it that way.
After all, as far as he's concerned, it's exciting enough that the car was once a television star! Or at least one seventh of one!