Everything or nothing: Bond cars on a budget

JonathanJune 19, 2014

Although many of us would love to get behind the wheel of an Aston Martin and pretend we are James Bond, the reality is that a mission to the cinema to watch 007's latest outing is the closest we'll get to being a secret agent.

Over the past 52 years, cars have been a key component of the James Bond films, with gadget-filled roadsters, classic coupes and even remote-controlled and invisible variants wowing us on the big screen.

However, for those whose budgets do not stretch to an Aston Martin DB5, here are some affordable alternatives that Bond himself was happy to drive – and that don't seem such a pipe dream to us after all.

Ford Mondeo

Yes, James Bond drove a Ford Mondeo. In fact, it is the first vehicle that Daniel Craig drove as 007, appearing in Casino Royale as 007 made his way to the Ocean Club in the Bahamas. Interestingly, the model seen in the 2006 film was actually the 2007 version, shipped by Ford 12 months early under lock and key as a promotional ploy (it worked). As the Mondeo remains one of the top ten most popular cars in the UK, you won't struggle to get your hands on one.

BMW Z3

Back in 1995, Bond driving a BMW was something that never seemed possible, but that is exactly what happened when Pierce Brosnan assumed the mantle of the 00 agent and set to stamping his authority on the role. Though it never quite recreated the connection that Bond had with the Aston Martin, there is no denying that Brosnan looked good behind the wheel of the Z3 – and so could you, as the vehicles are extremely cheap now.

Lotus Esprit

Aside from the 1964 DB5 that was immortalised in Goldfinger and later brought out of retirement (very usefully) in Skyfall, the Lotus Esprit is perhaps the second most famous Bond car. It's defining moment was Roger Moore emerging from the sea in The Spy Who Loved Me following a major car chase, but it's probably advisable to buy one that hasn't been in the ocean. An S3 can now be picked up relatively cheaply – but don't try driving it through your local park pond.

Citroen 2CV

By far the least glamorous Bond car, the yellow 2CV seen in 1981's For Your Eyes Only had already been in production for three decades, but that did not stop it from coming in useful as 007 and Bond girl Melina Havelock evaded enemy clutches by trundling down a hillside. While a pristine version is now a little harder to come by, one similar to the banged-up version that Bond drove will cost next-to nothing.

BMW 750iL

The second BMW on our list made a major impact in 1997, when Brosnan's Bond controlled it via an early variant of a smartphone, in order to wrong-foot his enemies. While not exactly easy to maneuver compared to some of the smaller cars on this list, it makes up for it with a comfortable interior and a 5.4-litre V12 engine – though don't expect to come by a remote-controlled version modified by the boffins in Q Branch.


« « Three ways to make the most of your car this summer | Mazda scoops best car manufacturer award » »
Partners Banner 1
Feefo logo