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The Story Behind The 1973 Chevy Malibu From “Drive”
In the 2011 film “Drive,” Ryan Gosling portrays The Driver, a film stuntman who doubles as a getaway car driver by night, but the other star of the movie is the car owned by The Driver: a 1973 Chevy Malibu Coupe. Although actors rarely, if ever, have a say in which rides their characters will use on-screen, Gosling himself was allowed to pick out his character’s car.
The actor based his decision on vehicles he admired and what he thought would fit The Driver the best, and after some thought, located a down-on-its-luck 1973 Chevy Malibu at a junkyard in Los Angeles. His involvement didn’t end there, as Gosling actually restored the car himself (apart from the transmission) rather than the production hiring an auto mechanic team to do it.
In explaining whether he had to rebuild the junker on his own, Gosling said during an interview with Empire Magazine in 2011, “My character never has to talk about cars or do anything underneath a car, so it doesn't really matter. But it felt important to me. And with every character you play, you have to find a way in. Sometimes it's hard … But it's important to me.”