For James Bond a car is not just a tool for Her Majesty’s Secret Service. It’s an expression of personal style. Whatever he drives is as important as his crisply tailored suits and shaken-not-stirred martinis in projecting his sense of sophistication. And for the producers of the 52-year-old film franchise, 007’s automobiles are markers of cool that inspire aspirational fantasies everywhere. To honour their place in movie history, the London Film Museum will open the exhibition Bond in Motion on 21 March, which first ran successfully for two years at the UK's National Motor Museum. It is the largest official collection of original 007 vehicles ever assembled.
Though he has driven many cars in 23 films, Bond’s most famous automobile is undoubtedly the Aston Martin DB5. With a polished silver-birch finish gleaming over a sleek magnesium alloy body, the car was an instant sensation when it debuted in 1964’s Goldfinger, as much for its classic-meets-futuristic design as for its complement of gadgets – including, most famously, an ejector seat. A DB5 has appeared in five subsequent Bond films, though one of the original models that included the gadgets sold for £2.9m ($4.6m) to the car collector Harry Yeaggy. (Alamy)