An iconic Aston Martin from James Bond movies Goldfinger and Thunderball is to be sold at auction – complete with fully-functioning gadgets.
Described as ‘the world’s most famous car’, the 1965 DB5 includes Browning .30 caliber machine guns, wheel-hub mounted tire-slashers, smoke screen dispensers and revolving license plates.
Auctioneer RM Sotheby’s is expecting the motor to fetch between $4m and $6m (£3.1 – £4.7m) when it goes under the hammer on August 15.
The lots is described as “a highly desirable acquisition for the serious marque collector … or secret agent.”
The gadgets were designed by special effects whizz John Stears after he visited Aston Martin’s Newport-Pagnell plant in late 1963.
Two modified cars were built to be used in the iconic bond flick Goldfinger; one for stunt driving and chase sequences, and the other for interior shots and close-ups.
As Q explained to 007, the DB5 was equipped with front and rear hydraulic over-rider rams on the bumpers, a Browning .30 caliber machine gun in each fender, wheel-hub mounted tire-slashers, a raising rear bullet-proof screen, an in-dash radar tracking scope, oil, caltrop and smoke screen dispensers, revolving license plates, and a passenger-seat ejection system.
It was also equipped with a telephone in the driver’s door to communicate with MI6 headquarters and a hidden compartment under the driver’s seat for weapons.
The success of Goldfinger was also a success for Aston Martin, which saw DB5 sales surge to unprecedented levels.
Bosses at Eon Productions took notice of the potential marketing opportunities and ordered two more DB5 saloons in preparation for Thunderball’s release.
These cars were fitted with all the Goldfinger modifications and shipped to the United States to promote Thunderball. It is one of these which is being sold at auction.
Sean Connery, who originally portrayed James Bond on film in both Goldfinger and Thunderball, said: “These DB5s are amazing.
“I remember the Furka Pass tire shredding as well as the promotional events with these cars – they have become increasingly iconic since Goldfinger and Thunderball.
“In fact I bought a very fine DB5 myself relatively recently.”
After the US promo tour for Thunderball the cars were bought by a collector in 1969 and sold to a museum in Tennessee where they spent 35 years on display.
The car has had just three private owners over 50 years and will be sold after a full restoration of all its gadgets.
It will be the star attraction among 120 other rare Aston Martins at the sale in Monterey, California.
RM Sotheby’s car specialist, Barney Ruprecht said: “No other car in history has played a more important leading role on film and in pop culture than the Aston Martin DB5.
“The DB5 is the iconic cornerstone of a marketing relationship that still exists to this day—with the model’s collectable status rooted largely in its 007 fame—and we look forward to exciting car and film enthusiasts alike in the lead up to the auction.
“This is an unbelievably rare chance to play secret agent in a car that offers incredible performance and style in its own right and we’re honoured to offer the Bond DB5 alongside our partners at Aston Martin.”