WHAT WOULD JAMES BOND DRIVE?
Seven cars for 007
This article is from our archives and has not been updated and integrated with our "new" site yet... Even so, it's still awesome - so keep reading!
Published on Sun, Nov 4, 2012
By: The LACar Editorial Staff
Poor James Bond, his Aston Martin is always getting shot at. What would he drive while that’s in the shop? Or should he even be driving an Aston, given it’s so easily identified with the agent from the Secret Intelligence Service? We asked the LA Car editors to give us their choices for what James Bond should drive. With that in mind, we give you seven cars for Agent 007—from the obvious to the outrageous.
Jaguar XKR-S Mr. Bond needs to have spare cars like commoners need spare tires! Another British marque (now owned by foreign interests) is Jaguar. And, in the absence of an Aston Martin, an XKR-S will do in a pinch. The Jag both inside and out is beautiful. The coupe has elegant touches, like a Poltrona Frau® leather headliner that’s striking, and a rear wing on the tail that says this is all business. Flinging it around the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana at triple digit speeds is simply amazing, even in the hands of us rank amateurs. With 550 horsepower, a top speed of 186mph, the XKR-S retains poise and composure even when the tail breaks lose. This is indeed very controllable, and perfect for evading megalomaniacs. If this performs brilliantly under our evaluation, think what it can do with a not-so secret agent behind the wheel. Price of entry is $132K, tax and license extra, and armament is optional - at your discretion. - John Grafman
Morgan The quintessential Bond car should be British, exist continuously from 1953, when he first appeared, to present, and possess tradition and exclusivity suitable for the 007. No cars fit this profile better than Morgan, a British roadster manufacturer founded in 1910, and currently run by the founder’s grandson. The production of hand-assembled Morgans is so limited that the customers wait up to ten years to get one. The 1953 Bond would drive the +4 with the 1991 cc, inline four engine, top speed of 100.3 mph, and 0-60 acceleration in 9.7 seconds. The closely-fitted engine cowling left no room for an air filter. The Commander would stretch cheesecloth over the carburetor in dusty conditions. His 2012 incarnation would pilot Morgan Aero Super Sports, one of the 200 produced worldwide, with 4.8 liter BMW V8, rated at 367 HP, ZF 6 Speed Automatic, a traditional ash-framed interior, aluminum body, with 0-60 in 4 seconds, and top speed of 170 mph. – Zoran Segina
Bentley Continental GT When Ian Fleming wrote the early Bond stories, he fitted James Bond with a Bentley—first a Bentley 4½ Litre sports car, then a Bentley Mark II Continental. Thus, it’s peculiar that none of the movies have shown Bond with a Bentley. It’s about time that the movie makers right this wrong—particularly since there exists a modern equivalent to the “real” Bond car. I am, of course, referring to the Bentley Mark II Continental GT. Optioned with the Speed package, the car generates 616 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque through an 8-speed transmission, and delivers it to all four wheels. With a top speed of 205 miles per hour, it should carry out Mr. Bond’s duties quite nicely. – Roy Nakano
Cadillac CTS-V Coupe My thoughts: Why would a secret agent drive a car that’s so obnoxious and stands out that people would take notice? Basically compromising himself? A high maintenance car? And with economies and governments agencies cutting back, I really don’t see them handing out $300K plus cars to their agents (so, that would mean over 2.1 million dollar for all agents just up to No. 007). Instead, I think Bond would drive a car that would be cool, but able to blend in. So if you saw the car, you might look but then forget about it the next second later. The car of choice is a Cadillac CTS-V Coupe—an ultra cool look, classy, sporty with a 556 horsepower V8. Q would be able to add all the spy gadgets built-in. It’s cool enough to drive for under $75K. It’ll still stand out, but not enough to get you killed. It’s made in America, helping our economy out. And most importantly, GM will sponsor the movie. – Tommy Grafman
McLaren I see two angles: A secret agent should be inconspicuous, so a flashy car does not fit the bill. Unless masquerading as a well-to-do executive, business owner, mogul, entertainer, member of the Saudi Royal family, etc, I envision secret agents driving the likes of a Toyota Camry, Ford Explorer or Chevy Suburban (an SUV for carrying guns, cannons, armor plating). That said, fitting the image of a flashy, movie star James bond, I'd go with a McLaren MP4-12C ... or to be current, a P1. Strikingly good looks. World-beating technology, sophistication and capability. Can blow the doors off any Italian supercar. And IT'S ENGLISH! If you're going to be employed in Her Majesty's Secret Service, and if all of your other tools and toys represent the pinnacle of British innovation, Mr. Bond's car must be consistent with the other movie props. God save the queen! - BT Justice
The Batmobile What would Bond drive? A 1955 Lincoln Futura. Why? Because you know that car, after George Barris had finished with it, as the original Batmobile. Think about it. Driving the Batmobile, Bond would be hiding in plain sight. Who would think of Bond upon seeing the car? No one. They'd be too busy yelling, "Hey, cool! Batmobile!" And who would think that the staid and polite British gentleman Bond is would want something so prototypically, outrageously American? You're right again if you said, "no one," because it just doesn't fit his image, though it is pretty suitable for his super-spy job. In that role, he'd have the chance to try out all the gadgets, like the rear rocket thruster, Bat-Ray Projector Mechanism, the Batscope. And, he'd be able to count on the car, because it was powered by a good old, non-fussy pushrod V8 engine. Yup, given the choice, that's what Bond would do. – Brian Kennedy Brian can be followed on twitter @growinguphockey
Ford RS200 Fast is not always beautiful … The Ford RS200 (Anglo-American, circa 1984-1986) is the poster-car for that not-so-startling statement; it is also the car that I think Bond should have driven in at least one of the 23 films that he made. Easily trumping any of the long (and often onerous) litany of boy-racer whimpmobiles that the secret agent man was contractually-bound to drive after his DB-4 went to movie-museum heaven, Ford’s ugly, bug-eyed, pasty-complected, absolutely brilliant RS200 is the car that these tired eyes see 007 slipping into for the chase scene to end all chase scenes. They built 200* or so of these all-wheel drive jane-plain ducklings, 24 of them at full “evo” strength (580 horsepower from a 130.4-cubic inch motor). (*at least that’s what the Group B homologation papers claimed (so they would be allowed to compete as some sort of “production” cars). But no one ever really believed those figures for any of the car models so enumerated. (Shelby was said to have a clown-car line going out the front door of his “factory” and back in around at the rear coming in to drive back out and be counted again and again by the unwary FIA car-counters!) My suspicion that there may have been fewer than the proscribed 200 identical examples of the RS200 may well be borne out by the news that examples of same (on the rare occasion that one even ever comes on the block) have been fetching prices in the $150K+ range. They are rare, few, and (very) far between indeed.) They were ostensibly rallye cars (Group B as it was known), but they were successfully road raced as well as put to good (very) use in hill climb competitions all over the world. Did I mention that they were butt-ugly? Of course YOUR idea of the term and my might not be totally parallel. (But if you could see what I see in a full-length mirror in the privacy of … well, you get the picture toot sweet.) In actuality, it’s the downright “give a shit” attitude of the coachwork that makes this car’s hyper performance even more interesting to me. Ghia designed this coachwork? Ouch … the only cool car body that Ghia ever drew was the VW Karman Ghia. Nope, this one is not beautiful, it’s really not even close to being sorta cute, but it is the king-hell crazy car of its time. Semi-monocoque, double coil-spring-suspended, with big old AP discs all around, no traction control, no ABS, room for two close friends, a prosaic 5-speed manual gearbox, and double the attitude of a very randy 60-pound bobcat. And of course, most of the production examples were painted this singularily-plain, almost flat white, the vanilla-coated exterior masking the fire that lay within … perfect! The “Q-Ship” lives! I need one and Bond should head for Bonhams the next time that one comes up for bid. – Doug Stokes To see the official movie site for the latest Bond movie, go to skyfall-movie.com