‘You expect me to balk?’ ‘No, Mr Customer, I expect you to buy!’
THE BOND FILMS are full of mad schemes. But few can match this: Aston Martin is building 25 DB5s to the specification of James Bond’s gadget-laden spy car from Goldfinger. Yes, really. Aston Martin has worked with Eon Productions and Oscar-winning special effects boffin Chris Corbould to create the new cars, built at the DB5’s original home in Newport Pagnell and painted in the same Silver Birch as the real thing. Like the recent DB4 GTs, they’re ‘continuation’ cars – newly built to old specifications, rather than restored originals.
The Goldfinger DB5s are said to include functioning gadgets, but the only one confirmed is the revolving number plates. Much as we’d love to see the movie car’s oil slick squirter, ejector seat and machine guns, we’re not expecting them. Still, at least it’ll be fun to drive with a 282bhp 4.0-litre straight-six and 7.1sec 0-62mph launch time, right? Except the cars are not road legal, so they’ll be confined to pootling around your private country estate, racetrack or super-villain island hideaway when deliveries of the £2.75m (plus taxes) cars start in 2020.
Meanwhile, back in something more closely resembling the real world, Aston Martin has confirmed that it’s about to float on the London Stock Exchange. The plan is expected to involve the company being valued at around £5bn and a £1 billion stake being offered, allowing investment in new products. Aston has been bankrupt seven times in its 105-year history, but is now – with backing from big Italian and Kuwaiti investors – healthily profitable. Daimler is expected to retain its 4.5 per cent holding. JAKE GROVES