From the submersible Lotus Esprit to the endlessly iconic Aston Martin DB5, here are ten classic Bond vehicles that leave Windrush’s classic car storage team shaken and stirred…
We welcome plenty of aspirational vehicles at Windrush. But nothing causes a buzz at our prestige car storage in London and the Cotswolds quite like the arrival of a Bond car. Ever since he revved a Sunbeam Alpine convertible around the film set of 1962’s Dr. No, 007’s automotive choices have always been impeccable, and although you’ll have to live without the Q-designed gadgetry, many are still available to buy today.
Here, we salute ten of the very best Bond vehicles, for you to dream of, aspire to, invest in and safeguard with our long term car storage.
1964 Aston DB5
This icon of icons debuted in 1964’s Goldfinger, where it combined the sleekest of British engineering with an onboard arsenal that included oil slicks, smokescreens, a hubcap-mounted tyre slasher and machine guns hidden behind the indicator lights. Amazingly, at the time, the film company couldn’t afford to buy the DB5 outright, and special effects maestro John Stears had to beg the British builder to borrow it.
1977 Lotus Esprit
Nicknamed ‘Wet Nellie’ on the set of 1977’s The Spy Who Loved Me, the Esprit only reveals its secrets when Roger Moore’s Bond drives into the sea – causing the wheelarches to convert into fins while a periscope sprouts from the roof. Filmed in the Bahamas, the sequence required six different cars – including a full-scale model built by Perry Oceanographics from a bodyshell supplied by Lotus Of England, and a three-foot model that could be fully submerged.
1997 BMW 750iL
Officially the world’s deadliest saloon, Q Branch outdid themselves on the V12 Beemer that stars in the audacious car park chase from 1997’s Tomorrow Never Dies. Pierce Brosnan’s secret agent could fire rockets from the sunroof, summon a chain-cutter from the bonnet and repel car-jackers with electric shocks, while spraying the bad guys with flash grenades, tear gas and metal spikes. All that, and it could even be controlled via his Ericsson mobile phone.
1981 Lotus Esprit Turbo
It’s hard to top the aforementioned subaquatic Esprit, but 1981’s For Your Eyes Only introduced two further Lotus models with tricks up their sleeves. Look out for the sequence in which two thugs are detonated after smashing the ‘Burglar Protected’ glass, and also for Bond’s travels to Cortina in a stunner featuring interior design by Guigiaro of Italy.
1981 Citröen 2CV
Also featured in For Your Eyes Only, the canary yellow 2CV falls into the ‘so uncool it’s cool’ category, livening up the chase scene with Gonzales’ thugs as it rolls around like an upended beetle. With the sequence supervised by Remy Julienne, the car proved so slow that the footage had to be sped up.
1999 BMW Z8
The perils of loaning 007 a high-performance sports car have never been made clearer than in 1999’s The World Is Not Enough. Titanium-bodied, V8-equipped and capable of 0-60 in five seconds, the Z8 even has a remote system than lets Bond start the engine and direct it to him. None of which saved it from being sawn in half by a buzzsaw suspended from a helicopter.
2006 Aston Martin DBS
New Bond, new Aston, and as Daniel Craig took the reins for Casino Royale, the British marque’s latest V12-equipped model made its world debut. Even though 007 is forced to swerve off-road to avoid Eva Green’s love interest Vesper – rolling the dream machine and reducing it to a smouldering soup tin – it’s hard to imagine a better publicity campaign.
1967 Toyota 2000 GT convertible
1967’s You Only Live Twice is an odd one out amongst Bond films – the spy never actually takes the wheel himself. Luckily for autophiles, he’s rescued by secret service agent Aki in a stunning example of Japan’s first supercar, with ice-white finish and 2.0 6-cylinder engine. Two GTs were built for the filming: one is in a private collection, the other in Toyota’s Japanese museum.
2015 Jaguar C-X75
Why should Bond get all the hardware? In 2015, Spectre finally gave a villain the best vehicle, with Dave Bautista’s hulking Mr Hinx tearing a dark orange C-X75 through the streets of Rome. Sadly, the car never left the drawing board as a production model – although a prototype from the film did appear at auction in Abu Dhabi two years ago.
2002 Aston Martin Vanquish
Purists were split over the ‘adaptive camouflage’ gadget that rendered Bond’s Die Another Day Aston invisible. But nobody could deny the Vanquish was a beauty, at once loud and brash, while also British and thorougly classy. The film car boasted a manual gearbox: an option that wasn’t offered to the public (they never got an ejector seat, either).
Choose Windrush classic car storage – for Bond cars and beyond
Whether you drive a Bond car or anything else, at Windrush, we’ve been expecting you. Our long term car storage is simply the best in the business, with two dedicated facilities in London and the Cotswolds that welcome your vehicle with a 12-step induction process, then keep it in peak condition with checkovers and maintenance programmes for the duration of your stay.
We’d love to tell you more about our prestige car storage services. Drop the team a line on email@example.com and discover how Windrush long term car storage gives you the movie star treatment.