The restoration of a 1970 Mack RS700 and prop tank trailer used in classic 'Convoy' film

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Updated Jun 28, 2021

Updated June 28, 2021, as part of Overdrive's ongoing weekly series of 60th anniversary lookbacks.

The video above showcases my 2017 talk with 20-truck tanker fleet owner Anthony Fox of Rome, Georgia, also proud owner and caretaker of the piece of trucking and film history that Fox and I were discussing -- one of the original 1970 Mack RS700 models used in the classic “Convoy” trucking film, released on today's date 43 years ago in 1978.

[Related: An era's social unrest finds an unlikely anthem in the rebellious 'Convoy']

What’s better, the rig is attached to a likewise original trailer used in the film. It's a 1960s 5,800-gallon Trailmobile tank trailer with the battle scars, and prop-worthy mods, to prove it.

anthony foxHere’s Fox indicating where two explosive charges were set off in the iconic bridge scene in Convoy when troopers shot at the back of the truck, before the final confrontation.

I met Fox upon arrival early at the Southern Classic Truck Show in September of that year, where the rig was set to reprise the “Hollywood Hill” Robb Mariani memorably wrote about here in Overdrive – a piece honoring the American cultural legacy of five famous trucks of the 1970s and '80s that got together at the Southern Classic the prior year, all together for the first time.

overdrive 60 year anniversary logoRead more in Overdrive's weekly 60th-annversary series of lookbacks on trucking history, and that of the magazine itself, via this link.When Fox and I spoke, the rig was just about set to get a wash at the shop on the site of the show of host Brad Wike, who owns and operates the BPW (“Best Possible Way”) Transport small fleet headquartered there. So apologies for the pressure-washer noise in the background through some of the video.

It all still makes for a fine tour through how the trucking company owner and operator came to own the rig. And he runs through its many unique features tied to particular moments from the film. You can catch further pictures of the unit below. 

Mack RS700The Mack and trailer getting prepped for a wash ahead of Brad Wike's Southern Classic Truck Show in 2017. This year's Southern Classic moves to a new site nearby to prior years' location in Lincolnton, North Carolina, Wike reported early this summer.

Anthony Fox behind the wheel of the 1970 'Rubber Duck' Mack used in Convoy.Small fleet owner Fox is shown here behind the wheel of the rig.

Look closely at the underside of the Trailmobile tanker and you'll find it is no hauling-capable tank at all.Look closely at the underside of the Trailmobile tanker and you'll find it is no hauling-capable tank at all.

In this photo provided by Fox, a more-recent view of the 'Convoy' Mack hammer-down on the road.In this photo provided by Fox, a more-recent view of the 'Convoy' Mack hammer-down on the road.

The story about the silver-painted duck hood ornament on the Mack that Fox tells in the video is that it began as a chromed-up duck but that reflections of the sun's rays interfered too intensely with the visuals being caught on film. The duck was then sanded and painted, with a Mohawk 'for an attitude,' Fox said, as filmmakers proceeded.The story about the silver-painted duck hood ornament on the Mack that Fox tells in the video is that it began as a chromed-up duck but that reflections of the sun's rays interfered too intensely with the visuals being caught on film. The duck was then sanded and painted, with a Mohawk "for an attitude," Fox said, as filmmakers proceeded.

All shined up and ready for show. ...Catch many more views of the rig, and plenty perspective on its history, from Fox in the video up top.All shined up and ready for show. ...Catch many more views of the rig, and plenty perspective on its history, from Fox in the video up top.

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