One of the most recognizable cars of all time will be up for auction when Bonhams features James Bond's Aston Martin DB5 at its Goodwood Festival of Speed Sale on July 13, 2018. The 1965 sports car is the most expensive piece of Bond memorabilia and was driven by actor Pierce Brosnan in the 1995 Bond thriller, GoldenEye. It's expected to sell for between £1.2 million and £1.6 million (US$1.6 million to $2.1 million).
Though it's a Guiness World Record holder, the GoldenEye DB5 isn't so much the Bond DB5 as a Bond DB5. The iconic two-seater hardtop with is gray finish was instantly and permanently associated with Ian Fleming's fictional MI6 superspy when it debuted in 1964's Goldfinger and the luxury grand tourer has, to date, appeared in seven Bond features. But as it is a movie prop from a big-budget production, there are a number of Bond Aston Martins scattered around the world.
Though the original DB5 for Goldfinger was actually the Aston Martin prototype, other cars were used for stunts and for the gadget special effects. In addition, special publicity cars were built with gadgets not seen in the film and were showcased at the 1964 New York World's Fair. When the DB5 was reintroduced in GoldenEye, this was a different car (registration BMT 214A) that was built in 1965 and, in addition to the one driven by Brosnan, two others were used for second unit filming.
In GoldenEye, the DB5 was front and center in the opening scenes as Bond races the villainess Xenia Onatopp in her red Ferrari F355 GTS at high speed on the winding roads in the hills above Monaco. Though the new DB5 did not have the machine guns, revolving number plates, extending rams, or ejector seats of the original, it did have a champagne cooler and a built-in fax machine disguised as an Alpine 7817R CD Tuner.
The GoldenEye DB5 previously sold at auction in 2001 for a then-record £157,750 (US$210,600) was subsequently displayed at the National Motor Museum in Beaulieu, Hants., and at the Bond in Motion exhibition at Covent Garden. It will be unveiled at Bonhams Aston Martin Sale on June 2 at Englefield House, Reading, before being moved to Goodwood for the auction.
"The DB5 is one of the most recognizable and desirable British classic cars in the world – it is also the ultimate Bond car," says Sholto Gilbertson, Bonhams Motor Cars Department Director. "Every fan remembers Pierce Brosnan tearing through the hills in this car, and it must be up there as one of the most thrilling Bond car chases in history. This Aston Martin is something very special indeed."
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