Sunday, July 15, 2012

Aston Martin V8 Vantage/Volante (from the film 'The Living Daylights') (1987)

At the start of the 1987 James Bond film 'The Living Daylights', we see our hero, played for the first time by Timothy Dalton, driving 'B549 WUU' a V8 Volante with Cumberland Grey coachwork and upholstered in black leather. This car was in fact the personal transport of Victor Gauntlett, the Chairman of AML. (

There was quite a long waiting list for AM V8s, and they ended up having to buy a handful of used cars to repurpose for the movie. Also, as you might have spotted in the film, Bond's car begins as a drop-top Volante and morphs into a tin-top Vantage - the explanation that we're given is that Q 'winterised' it. 

But anyway, the key function of any 007 car is to bristle with gadgets. So what did this Aston have? Well, the most obvious additions are the outriggers - extendable skis to stabilise it on snow - and the afterburner for short bursts of bonkers acceleration. There were also missiles behind the spotlamps, lasers in the wheel centres, retractable tyre spikes for traction, a heads-up display for the missile system, a military radio scanner disguised as a Philips cassette player and - naturally - a self-destruct button. (

(Photos from, &

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