Bond in Motion is the excellent exhibition of James Bond vehicles currently on show at the London Film Museum. In fact, it is the largest display of its kind ever staged in London. The James Bond franchise first hit the big screen in 1962 with Dr No.
Inspired by the genius writing of Ian Fleming, half a century and six Bonds later, 007 is as strong and as formidable as ever. We decided to take a journey through the legendary Bond Story, one car at a time.
The creative process behind the James Bond vehicles is fascinating. Story boards and illustration are still used in the creation of Bond Cars today just like they were In the sixties.
The vehicles play a pivotal role in all 23 movies. They are just as important as the characters.
The majority of the cars are loaned from the archive of EON productions who produce the movies and the Ian Fleming Foundation who have located and restored many of the vehicles. Not one vehicle in the exhibition was a replica- every vehicle exhibited is an original as seen on screen.
Bullet-holes and all.
From On Her Majesty’s Secret Service this 1969 Mercury Cougar XR7 was driven by Tracy Draco onto a Portuguese beach where she attempted suicide. Later in the film its seen in a winter stock-car race on an ice-covered track to help Bond escape from Blofeld’s henchmen and Irma Bund.
From Die Another Day was this Aston Martin V12 Vanquish. The car is equipped with all the usual modifications, including front-firing rockets between two machine guns, hood-mounted target-seeking shotguns, spike-producing tires, again and a passenger ejector seat in homage to the original Aston Martin DB5, but used here in a clever bit of improvisation by 007 to right the car when it’s been flipped onto its roof.
Its most unique feature though was “adaptive camouflage” – a cloaking device that allowed it to become effectively invisible at the push of a button.
The Spy Who Loved Me Lotus Esprit S1 is one of the most memorable Bond machines. Delivered to Bond by Q in Sardinia, this Lotus was capable of transforming into a submarine. In this mode, it is equipped with anti-aircraft missiles. RM Auctions auctioned the white Lotus Esprit submarine in London on September 9, 2013 for £550,000.
From A View to Kill produced in 1985- Rolls Royce Silver Cloud 2. This car appears with Sir Godfrey Tibbet behind the wheel, masquerading as Bond’s chauffeur as he drives 007 to the French chateau of the villainous Zorin.
The assassin May Day strikes en-route, and Bond only escapes a watery grave by breathing air from the tyres. This car belonged to James Bond producer, Cubby Broccoli who lent it for the production.
From the 1964 classic Goldfinger this 1937 Rolls-Royce Phantom III is the villain Auric Goldfinger’s car.
Chassis no. 3BU168 is in magnificent order and the Barker sedanca de ville body is vey unique.
Aston Martin DB5 used in the 1995 Goldeneye. Bond is reunited with the unmistakable James Bond car for the first time in 30 years when an Aston Martin DB5 serves as his personal vehicle. In a thrilling opening sequence, 007 races the Ferrari F355 Spider belonging to bad-girl Xenia Onatopp down twisting mountain roads in the south of France.
From Die Another Day this Jaguar XKR was driven by Zao Equipped with front grille machine guns, door panel missiles, rear mounted gattling gun and boot mounted mortars.
We saw this vehicle at Beaulieu. See more information about this car here.
The BMW Z8 was an impressive car in The World Is Not Enough. After being introduced at Q’s laboratory, it moved into action at the caviar plant where Bond engaged the remote-driving fob.
He launched a rocket from the side air vent but the car proved no match for one of Elektra King’s helicopters, which slices it in half. The Z8 on display is the only car featuring rockets in the side air vent.
Bond cars usually have a hard life and the Aston Martin DBS from the 2008 Quantum of Solace was no exception. Bond gives chase to bad guy Le Chiffre and swerces to avoid the prone figure of Vesper Lynd, spinning his car before it smashes to a standstill. Stunt driving ace Adan Kirley flipped the car through seven and three quarter turns during filming, a Guiness world Record. Kirley’s record-breaking car is on display- with its battered bodywork.
Carbon-fibre bodywork was literally shredding. Poor car!
From On Her Majesty’s Secret Service Aston Martin DBS. The car was seen in only four scenes, including the pre-credits teaser and as James and Tracy’s wedding car. Nothing is known about what kind of gadgets were installed, except naturally that it had a hiding place for a sniper rifle in the glovebox.
This BMW 750iL from Tomorrow Never Dies was loaned to Bond by Q at an Avis rental station in Germany. This car is equipped with missile launchers, caltrops, self-inflating tires and a near-impenetrable body. The BMW can be remotely controlled via a special Ericsson cell phone. During a chase inside a carpark, Bond exits the car and remotely drives it to the rooftop, sending it flying off the carpark before crash-landing into an Avis station across the street.
We hope you have enjoyed our coverage of the Bond in Motion exhibition.