The “Hound Dog”, a Lockheed Jetstar business jet that belonged to singer Elvis Presley, has been put up for sale by auction house Mecum Auctions. The auction, which is scheduled to start on January 4, has not yet had the minimum bid announced.
This is the third opportunity that Elvis’ former Jetstar is offered for sale. The jet has been parked in an airplane graveyard in the Roswell desert, in the state of New Mexico, since 1990, where it has been suffering from the effects of time.
The aircraft’s eye-catching paint job, in a red tone, is quite worn out and the four engines were removed, as well as the cockpit avionics.
The plane’s extravagant interior, customized according to the taste of the “King of Rock”, remains intact and unaltered. The cabin has six wide armchairs covered in red suede and a state-of-the-art entertainment system from the 1970s, with cassette player, television and VCR.
According to the auction house, Presley’s former plane is an “opportunity for a new owner to acquire an extravagant piece of his aviation past is a momentous occasion with untold room for flights of rock ‘n’ roll fancy”. Those who take the jet will also acquire the original Jetstar documents signed by the artist, who bought the model new in 1976 for $840,000.
The Jetstar was one of the first executive jets launched. The aircraft, with capacity for up to 10 passengers, was manufactured by Lockheed between 1957 and 1978 and production reached 204 jets.
Elvis Presley’s planes
The Jetstar parked in Roswell wasn’t the King of Rock’s only plane. In 1975, Elvis acquired a collection of aircraft. The original plan was to buy a used Boeing 707, but the owner of the chosen aircraft was involved in alleged crimes. With the purchase of the Boeing cancelled, the musician leased a Fokker F-27 turboprop.
The following month, he returned the F-27 and bought two business jets, a Gulfstream G1 turboprop and a Dassault Falcon jet.
As Elvis wanted a bigger plane, the solution was to buy a four-engine Convair 880 that belonged to Delta Airlines. The passenger plane was customized with special painting and the interior was configured with a cabin with a double bed and a room with a large table in the center. This plane was the first in Elvis’ fleet to be named Lisa Marie. Next came the Hound Dog.
Other members of the Presley family and people close to the musician also took a ride on these planes, with or without Elvis on board. With so many “passengers”, the king of rock bought another Lockheed Jetstar, the Hound Dog II.
The Lisa Marie and the Hound Dog II were the only Elvis planes that were preserved. The duo is on display at the museum in honor of the musician, in Graceland, USA.