A brief history of 007’s cars

Copyright © Evans Halshaw

1963 page from Bond: Licence to Drive

The Evans Halshaw company is a leading car and van retailer in the United Kingdom, with over 130 locations across England, Scotland, and Wales. Of much more interest to us 007 fans is that they’ve created, for their Web site, a very cool history of the cars of the screen James Bond.

Combining interesting factoids with a very slick vector graphics look, the presentation takes us all the way from the Sunbeam Alpine Sean Connery piloted in Dr. No, through Skyfall‘s Land Rover Defender (and – Spoiler Alert! – a certain Aston Martin DB 5).

James Bond fans – and motoring enthusiasts (a.k.a. car nuts) – can point their web browsers to Bond: Licence to Drive and feast their eyes.

Tell ’em that HMSS sent ya!

(Big thanks to Laura Bailey at Online Ventures Group for tipping us to this neat little show!)

“Uncle Jed, buy me a spy car.”

Beverly Hillbilly Jethro Bodine longed to be “a double-naught secret agent,” and implored his millionaire uncle to get him the proper set of wheels.

©  Exclusive Motor Cars

© Exclusive Motor Cars

If you’re like Jethro, or you’re a James Bond fan, or a car buff, or a James Bond car buff, or a hard-core Bond collector, and if you can spare $126,000, the good people at Exclusive Motor Cars have a deal for you.

Using an early 2000s V8 Ford Mustang as a base, this Canadian “Q branch” can put together for you a replica of James Bond’s Die Another Day Aston Martin Vanquish, complete with a, in their words, “spy package.”

Said package includes:

  • Front Grill Rockets;
  • Machine Gun Cannons;
  • Revolving License Plate;
  • Center Console Champagne Case;
  • and, in a perhaps un-Bondian nod to safety considerations,
    Back Seat Compartment for fire extinguisher and helmet

The actual body of the car is a combination of vacuum infused and hand laid up fibreglass composite. You can get it in any color you want, but, let’s face it, you’re going to be ordering it in a proper shade of silver. Interior colors are Aston Martin standards.

So, for your money, you’re getting a luxury sports car tricked out with way-cool 007 gadgetry. The company stresses that they’re not in the business of building Aston Martin replicas:

We are trying to reproduce the ultimate James Bond spy car, not an Aston Martin (That is Aston Martin’s job).

This is from their FAQ, and gives us a frisson of covetous glee:
Q: How close is your car to the original James Bond car?
A: Very close.

Specifications, pricing, pictures, and all the other requisite business can be found at their website; we recommend jumping straight to THE SPY CAR page.

Ask your Uncle Jed to break out his checkbook, Jethro!

For sale: one of 007’s most famous rides

swlm_film_04A Lotus sports car used in the 1977 James Bond movie The Spy Who Loved Me is about to go up for sale.

The Lotus could fetch 120,000 pounds, or about $185,000, Bloomberg’s Scott Reyburn writes. From the story: “The white 1976 Lotus Esprit comes complete with a surface-to- air-missile button on the gearstick, although the auction house Bonhams tells prospective purchasers and vengeful drivers that the device is for show and does not work.”

To view the entire story, click RIGHT HERE.

(Publisher’s note: HMSS friend and contributor Doug Redenius has a fascinating story about recovering one of the Lotus Esprit cars used in TSWLM.  In TO FIND A SPY(car), you can read all about the deplorable condition he found it in, and how he restored it to the show car that it now is.)