Porsche and Pixar Animation Studios have collaborated on a unique vehicle inspired by one of Hollywood’s most popular cars: Sally Carrera, the famous 911 from Disney and Pixar’s 2006 animated film Cars.
The one-off car — called the 911 Sally Special — sold at the RM Sotheby’s Monterey Auction on Saturday evening for a record $3.6 million. The final winning offer came via telephone with a record-setting bid for a new Porsche sold at auction, according to RM Sotheby’s.
“Vehicles need a face and a story,” Dr. Sebastian Rudolph, Vice President of Communications, Sustainability and Politics at Porsche AG said. “And the animated Pixar’s film Cars has impressively done just that: brought cars to life on the big screen. The story conveys values such as friendship, love and mutual support — and in the middle of it all is a Porsche: ‘Sally Carrera.’
Together with Pixar we have brought the spirit of Sally to life in a new way, not on the screen, but off the screen. With this one-off street legal 911, the ‘Sally Special,’ we want to help people who urgently need support, quite in keeping with the spirit of the film character.
All auction proceeds are to be donated to two charities: a portion will benefit young women through a donation to Girls Inc. and a portion will go to USA for UNHCR, an organization that supports refugees from Ukraine.
How it Unfolded
The project began in November 2021 and united members of the original Cars team that brought both the film character and life-size Sally Carrera to life more than 20 years ago. The team included Jay Ward, Creative Director of Franchise at Pixar Animation Studios, and Bob Pauley, the Production Designer who first drew Sally Carrera for the Cars film. They were assisted by members of the Sonderwunsch team at Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur in Stuttgart and designers from Style Porsche in Weissach. The team worked together for ten months to create a unique factory one-off.
“We had great fun creating the 911 Sally Special and it’s the first time we’ve worked on a project of this kind,” Ward added. “We decided early on that we wanted to create a completely drivable 911 — inspired by Sally Carrera, but just not an exact copy. Sally Carrera loves to drive — that was our inspiration. We asked ourselves: if Sally were built today as a road-approved model, what would she look like?”
In the film, Bonnie Hunt voiced Sally, a blue 2002 996-series Porsche 911 Carrera.
“911 Sally Special is based on the fastest and most agile variant of the 911 Carrera model line, the 911 Carrera GTS,” Boris Apenbrink, Director Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur vehicles explained. “The car is equipped with a manual gearbox, tapping into Sally Carrera’s passion for driving. The customization elements are detailed and extensive. 911 Sally Special was one of the most intense, emotional and detailed Sonderwunsch projects our team has worked on.
“One example is that the car is painted in Sallybluemetallic, a custom paint that was hand-applied specifically for this project.” In the film, Sally sports a “trunk tattoo” from her younger, wilder days, a detail not forgotten by the design team. “We also thought of Sally’s tattoo, of course. Implementing that was a very special challenge.”
Sally Carrera’s Turbo-look rims were reinterpreted by Porsche designers in Weissach and manufactured especially for the 911 Sally Special. The ‘five-arm design’ rim was adapted to the 20-/21-inch wheel dimensions of the current 911 generation and creates a visual link to the 911 Type 996 on which Sally Carrera is based.
Porsche interior designer Daniela Milošević led the team that worked with Pixar to design the new blue color as well as the vehicle’s interior.
“We were given complete freedom, which was great!” Milošević added. “In the film, Sally Carrera was a lawyer from California who valued style and elegance. At the same time, she was down-to-earth and fun-loving. The special Sallybluemetallic is used in the interior as well, where it creates both obvious highlights and subtle details that will hopefully bring a smile to the future owner’s face.
“At the same time, it was important to us not to forget everyday usability and practicality,” she explained. “911 Sally Special is meant to be driven often and gladly. We developed a special Pepita houndstooth fabric upholstery in three colors, combined with chalk-colored leather and stitching in Speed Blue. Working out these details makes the project special and brings back a lot of memories of the movie and Sally Carrera.”
In addition to the car itself, the auction also includes other highlights – most notably a unique chronograph by Porsche Design, also created in collaboration with Pixar. Like the car itself, the colored ring is painted in Sallybluemetallic. The chalk-colored leather strap with Speed Blue stitching underscores the sporty design of the unique timepiece. The strap can be quickly and easily swapped out for a second strap in Speed Blue with chalk-colored stitching, without the need for any tools. Like the vehicle, the chronograph has a limited-edition marking on the back of the case.
The one-of-a-kind piece is powered by a COSC-certified Porsche Design WERK 01.100 movement. The 911 Sally Special Chronograph was precision engineered and manufactured at Porsche’s own watchmaking facility in Solothurn, Switzerland. The auction will also feature a special indoor car cover from Porsche Tequipment, a wheel rack with an additional wheel set consisting of Carrera Exclusive Design wheels, a book on the development and production of the one-off model and original drawings by designers Shuichi Yamashita and Bob Pauley.
Girls Inc. and USA for UNHCR
Operating from 76 sites across the United States and in Canada, Girls Inc. equips girls with the knowledge and skills to effect positive changes in their lives and become leaders who will change the world. Girls Inc. inspires all girls to be strong, smart and bold through direct service and advocacy.
“We are grateful to Porsche and to Pixar for their commitment to this project, which will directly benefit our work,” Stephanie J. Hull, Ph.D., Girls Inc. President & CEO said. “The character of Sally, and what she represents, is a great role model for young girls and it is fitting that she should be helping a new generation achieve their dreams.”
The United Nations Refugee Agency supports more than 6.2 million refugees who have been forced to flee their homes due to the war in Ukraine.
“The majority of those forced to flee Ukraine are women and children, among them unaccompanied children and those separated from their parents,” Anne-Marie Grey, Executive Director and CEO of USA for UNHCR said. “But there is reason to hope with the critical support of companies like Porsche and Pixar who have generously stepped up to help ensure their safety and protection in months to come.”Porsche Newsroom