The dark blue Volvo wagon driven by character Gus Fring – played by Giancarlo Esposito – in the hit TV shows Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, is going under the hammer in the US next week.
The award-winning TV series Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul had a great line-up of cars to help shape their lead characters – and now there is a chance to own one of the stars of the show.
The dark blue 1998 Volvo V70 wagon driven by character Gus Fring – played by Giancarlo Esposito, a drug lord who used his mundane job as a chicken shop owner as cover – across the two TV series is going under the hammer in the US next week.
Auction house Mecum has listed the Volvo V70 as part of its catalogue for the 27-30 July 2022 event in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
It is unclear how much the car will sell for at this early stage, but it is likely to be bought by a diehard fan of the TV series – or a Volvo collector who is after a piece of TV history.
The unassuming Volvo – which is in honest rather than immaculate condition – was used by the show creators to help Gus Fring blend in with the community as an upstanding citizen, rather than drive an exotic car that showed his truly lavish wealth.
The Mecum Auctions listing says the 1998 Volvo V70 was driven by Giancarlo Esposito who played Gus Fring in the second, third and fourth seasons of Breaking Bad as well as the third, fourth, fifth and sixth seasons of the prequel Better Call Saul.
“Fring’s character was (a) terrifying narcotics distributor whose public image as a successful entrepreneur and philanthropist made him a well-respected figure in Albuquerque,” says the Mecum Auctions listing.
“The vehicle choice of the Volvo V70 wagon lent to Fring’s positive and unassuming public persona.”
After production wrapped on Breaking Bad, the Volvo was gifted to Giancarlo Esposito and, presumably, later used to film the Better Call Saul prequel.
It is unclear whether the actor has put the car up for auction, or if he sold it to someone else before it ended up on the auction block.
For the Volvo fanatics, the dark blue car with a tan leather interior is listed as having a 2.3-litre five-cylinder engine, automatic transmission, power steering, disc brakes, power windows and a power-operated driver’s seat, as well as air conditioning, a CD player, tinted windows and six-spoke alloy wheels.
While the automotive centrepiece of the original Breaking Bad series, the 1986 Fleetwood Bounder motorhome that was depicted as a mobile meth lab, was crushed as part of the storyline in season three, one of the run-down Pontiac Aztecs driven by Walter White (Bryan Cranston) sold in 2013 for $US7800.
According to a Breaking Bad fan website, three Pontiac Azteks were used in the filming of the original TV series.
“The main vehicle driven by (Walter White), a crash double also used as a parts car, and a second crash double” formed the Pontiac Aztec fleet, according to a report by Breaking Bad Fandom.
“The main car will remain on display at Sony Studios,” says the fan website. “The second crash double was used in the crash scene with Hank, and had severe rear damage. It sold at auction on 8 October 2013 for $US7800.”
Joshua Dowling has been a motoring journalist for more than 20 years, spending most of that time working for The Sydney Morning Herald (as motoring editor and one of the early members of the Drive team) and News Corp Australia. He joined CarAdvice / Drive in 2018, and has been a World Car of the Year judge for more than 10 years.