When it comes to action movie franchises, it doesn’t get much better than the James Bond Franchise. Ian Fleming came up with the James Bond character in 1953, and since then, we’ve been blessed with 25 amazing 007 films. There’s a lot to love about James Bond films – the famous actors, fast-paced action, fantastic exotic locations, and, of course, the cars.
Anyone who has watched a Bond film knows that it’s going to have a car chase involving one or more ridiculously expensive cars. Some of these cars are left stock, while others receive crazy modifications to meet James Bond’s unique spy needs. Let’s explore ten of the greatest Bond cars of all time.
10 Aston Martin DB5
When it comes to Bond cars, Aston Martin is king. The DB5 was the first Aston to be featured in a Bond film and since then, Astons have been a staple in the franchise. The DB5 first appeared in Goldfinger (1964) and was so good that it returned for several follow-up installments.
Looking at the DB5, it’s easy to see why it was picked for the role. For starters, it’s one of the most beautiful British cars of all time. The DB5 was also a powerhouse, thanks to a 4.0-liter straight six cranking out 325 hp. The DB5 used in the film had several gadgets, including rotating number plates, a passenger ejector seat, water cannons, a smokescreen, and machine guns hidden in the front and rear.
9 Lotus Esprit
Every Bond actor has one car that most fans remember them by, and for Roger Moore, that car was the Lotus Esprit. The Esprit is a fantastic wedge-shaped sports car designed by the renowned Giorgetto Giugiaro.
The Esprit was first featured in The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) where it was involved in one of the most iconic movie scenes. During an epic car chase, the Esprit transformed into a submarine and then later transformed back into a car.
8 Ford Mustang Mach 1
The Bond franchise typically uses British cars. However, in the 1972 film Diamonds Are Forever, the producers decided to go with an American car since the film was based in Las Vegas. The Mustang Mach 1 was the chosen car, which isn’t a surprise since it’s one of the best special edition Mustangs ever.
In the film, the Mustang was involved in a controversial car chase where it drove into an alley on its two right wheels and emerged on the other side while balanced on the left.
7 Toyota 2000GT
The Toyota 2000GT needs no introduction, as it’s among the most iconic Japanese sports cars. The 2000GT debuted in 1967 and impressed everyone with its gorgeous looks.
The same year, the 2000GT was chosen to be Bond’s car for the 1967 Japan-based film You Only Live Twice. The 2000GT used in the film was originally a hardtop, but was modified as a roadster to accommodate Sean Connery’s height.
6 Sunbeam Alpine
Not many gearheads know about Sunbeam today, but back in the ’50s, it was one of the top British automakers. One of Sunbeam’s best cars was the Alpine – a two-seater roadster with great looks and the power to match.
The Alpine was so good that it was chosen to be Bond’s first-ever car in the franchise’s 1962 debut film, Dr. No. Although the Alpine isn’t as iconic as the DB5 or most other 007 cars, it’s a vital part of the franchise’s history.
5 Citroen 2CV
The Citroen 2CV played a key role in the auto industry. Conceived by Pierre Boulanger in the late ’40s, the 2CV is a front-engine front-wheel-drive economy car built to help motorized the large number of French families using horses at the time.
The 2CV had a straightforward, utilitarian bodywork and was powered by a 29-hp engine. This doesn’t sound like the kind of car that James Bond drives, but it was still chosen for the 1981 film For Your Eyes Only, where it was chased by Peugeot 504s.
4 Mercury Cougar XR7
After the huge success of the Mustang in the ’60s, Ford’s luxury division, Mercury, decided to build its own version of the fabled pony car, resulting in the Cougar. The Cougar was basically a re-bodied Mustang equipped with a performance package that included a ram air hood scoop, bucket seats, and rally wheels.
The Cougar appeared in 1969’s On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. The car was not driven by Bond, but by his wife Tracy di Vincenzo.
3 BMW Z3
There’s always a first time for everything, and BMW’s first appearance in the James Bond franchise came in the 1995 film Goldeneye. The model chosen was the Z3 roadster, and like previous Bond cars, it came equipped with all sorts of gadgets, including stinger missiles, an all-points radar, and an ejector seat.
Unfortunately, the Z3 didn’t get much on-screen time, as it only appeared for just two minutes before it was traded for a plane. BMW did benefit, though, as it received multiple deposits for the Z3 after the film’s release.
2 Aston Martin V8 Vantage
The original V8 Vantage debuted in 1977 and immediately impressed gearheads. For one, the V8 Vantage had a fantastic design that made it look like the British version of an American muscle car. The V8 Vantage’s 170-mph top speed also earned it the title of ‘Britain’s first supercar.’
In 1987, the V8 Vantage was featured in The Living Daylights where it was driven by Timothy Dalton in his first Bond film. The car started as a convertible but was later ‘winterized’ and fitted with gadgets like a head-up targeting system, pop-out spiked tires, wheel lasers, and a rocket booster.
1 Triumph Stag
The Triumph Stag is yet another awesome British roadster produced in the ’70s. Triumph built the Stag to compete with the Mercedes-Benz SL-class models and was quite popular thanks to its design and massive V8 engine under the hood.
The Stag has appeared in multiple films over the years, but its most memorable appearance was in the 1971 Bond film Diamonds Are Forever. In the film, Bond drives a Saffron Yellow 1970 Stag as he’s getting away from the bad guys.
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About The Author
Martin Peter (279 Articles Published)
Martin is a seasoned content creator who has been writing about cars for over a decade, and has been in love with them for even longer. Growing up, Martin was surrounded by gearheads who instilled a deep love and understanding for cars in him at a young age. He loves to learn and write about all the developments happening in the auto industry – especially in the EV space. When he’s not writing about cars, he likes to spend quality time with his wife, kids, and fur baby.