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From the Sunbeam Alpine in “Dr. No” all the way to the Land Rover Defender in “Skyfall,” James Bond has had some pretty sweet rides. Just like the Bond Girls the Bond Cars have become their own sub-strata of movie lore. But how has the Bond Car changed throughout the years? Here’s a look at a few of the most famous Bond cars and the ways in which they have helped shape the trajectory of one of cinema’s greatest heroes.

Sunbeam Alpine in “Dr. No”: Undoubtedly in 1962 when the first James Bond film premiered producers had no inkling of the way this franchise would take off and become a monster all its own. They likely had even less of an idea of how the James Bond cars would go on to curry their own individual favor. Bond drove the Alpine in the first film; however there were no alterations made by Q’s lab in this first vehicle; it was just a means to getting around.

Bentley Mark IV in “From Russia with Love”: The following year in 1963 the follow up James Bond film took a vehicle off the road which remains an amazing brand. Bentley is a grand car then and it remains so today. However they only used the Bentley as more of a prop for the film; Bond never drove the car but it did have a car telephone which at the time was just about the most ridiculous thing you could ever imagine!

Bond Car

Toyota GT 2000 in “You Only Live Twice”: This futuristic car was created for the Bond film in 1967. The Toyota GT 2000 featured in the film was actually one of just two convertibles custom built for the film.

Chevrolet Impala Convertible in “Live and Let Die”: This convertible was not the first soft top in the Bond franchise but the car; big and splashy; was maybe apropos for that period in the series; the eighth film; as well as fitting for the time it was released; 1973.

Lotus Esprit S1 in “The Spy Who Loved Me”: This car was pretty amazing. The Lotus Esprit S1 from the 1977 film had a full submersion kit which took the car and turned it into a submarine. Because you can’t catch what you can’t catch.

MP Lafer in “Moonraker”: This car actually looks very old and dowdy like a moon vehicle. But the way in which Manuela travels in and out of traffic in this car makes it worth noting.

Aston Martin V8 Vantage Volante in “The Living Daylights”: This car was pretty amazing but not nearly the first Aston Martin Bond car. It is notable though because the V8 was rigged with “skiing” deceives for the snowy landscape of the film.

Lincoln Mark VII LSC in “License to Kill”: Before Puff Daddy ever dreamed he could roll in such luxury this 1989 car was doing 0-60 in 8.3 seconds; giving Bond and his people a “Licensee to Kill.”

Aston Martin DBS V 12 in “Casino Royale”: Many of the more modern cars have all kinds of cool functions. Like the medical station, defibrillator and poison analysis kit. Because you don’t have enough to do when deadly henchmen are on your tail; you should be identifying your poison as well.

Bond cars through the years have been bold, daring, sexy, and unimaginable. If you could have driven any of these cars with the skill and speed of Bond actors through the years, maybe you too would have been able to carry out some of these perilous heroics.

Nick writes for West End Autos Two, the car service and auto electrical specialists in Brisbane’s West End. Look them up for your next log book service, safety certificate or other car repair requirements.