HomeThe MarketBurning Man rocket car on Sotheby’s charity auction docket

Burning Man rocket car on Sotheby’s charity auction docket

Former 1973 Cadillac now stretches to 40 feet and holds 16 passengers


A 1973 Cadillac Sedan DeVille transformed into the Rocket Car is among the objects up for bidding in Sotheby’s online “Boundless Space: The Possibilities of Burning Man,” a charitable auction that closes October 8.

According to Sotheby’s, the auction features “the remarkable expressions of creativity that emerge from the annual Burning Man event and global culture.

“Dive into an eclectic collection of sculptures, paintings, collectibles, mutant vehicles, NFTs, and one-of-a-kind experiences,” the auction company suggests. “Produced in collaboration with Burning Man Project, funds raised by Boundless Space will support participating artists, help ensure the nonprofit’s long-term survival, and fund their Arts and Civic Engagement programs.”

The pre-auction estimated value of the Rocket Car is $30,000 to $50,000. 

Burning Man, Burning Man rocket car on Sotheby’s charity auction docket, ClassicCars.com Journal
Here’s the design, up for bidding is ownership of the vehicle planned for Burning Man 2023
Burning Man, Burning Man rocket car on Sotheby’s charity auction docket, ClassicCars.com Journal
Mayan mask vehicle

Sotheby’s notes that cars allowed on Nevada’s Black Rock Desert during its annual gathering must be driven onto the playa. The Rocket Car was done in 2003 by David Best, called by Sotheby’s an “art car master” from Petaluma, California. The vehicle is 40 feet in length and has been photographed carrying as many as 16 passengers. 

Also on the docket, and with a pre-sale estimate of $2.2 million to $2.5 million, is a “Metal Mutant Masterpiece,” a custom vehicle built by Henry Chang.

Chang is known for his amazing and large automotive creations. Chang has designed his next project, which the winning bidder will fund and own for display at Burning Man 2023.   

Yet another “vehicle” in the auction is “89,” an 11-foot, 881-pound “contemporary tribute to ancient Mayan culture” by Alex Gray. Pre-sale estimated value is $50,000 to $70,000.

Larry Edsall
Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.


  1. hey Laryy great post on the wonderful art and mutant vehciles we have enjoyed for many years, Kurtis Matt’s Highschool mate, I have ridden in these on the playa and the Rockit Caddy is one of many masterpieces and we can hope the future owner will return it to it’s place in the dust – the comoditizing/commertializing of the an event based on gifting and joy of humanity and art is a challange – that said come join us in 2023 on playa and we can ride in some of these together. many things there can not be expressed and can only be experienced. kurtis


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Recent Posts