Along with his gun, his dinner jackets and his accomplices, James Bond’s cars hold a special place in the series’ lore. Of course, the first car that comes to mind is the gadgeted-out Aston Martin DB5, but what about the lesser-known bond cars? We’ve assembled nine of our favorites (and our absolute least favorite) that 007 has driven over the last 53 years. Some are exotics, most are customized and a handful are even affordable, but all of them helped make the James Bond franchise what it is today. (For more Bond cars, check out the newly released James Bond Cars ($21) by Frederic Brun.)
Chevrolet Bel Air Convertible, ‘Dr. No’
Why It’s Great: This is the genesis, the first car Bond ever drove. While it may not be the most exciting car that 007 ever helmed, it makes the list just for being first.
Notable Features: Infinite headroom, a cyanide-poisoned enemy in the back seat.
Toyota 2000GT Roadster, ‘You Only Live Twice’
Why It’s Great: Not only is it beautiful and incredibly rare — only two drop-top versions were custom-made for the film — it might be the best locally made car Bond’s ever driven (even though it was owned by Bond girl Aki).
Notable Features: Closed-circuit TV, an early version of FaceTime.
Ford Mustang Mach 1, ‘Diamonds Are Forever’
Why It’s Great: It would be wrong to see Bond flying through Vegas in anything but a high-powered American muscle car, and the Mach 1 was just the trick.
Notable Features: 429 Cobra Jet engine, ability to rotate in very tight spaces.
Lotus Turbo Esprit, ‘For Your Eyes Only’
Why It’s Great: Bond had a more famous, more submersible Esprit in The Spy Who Loved Me, and yet another one in For Your Eyes Only, but to our minds this brown on brown alpine version is the best one.
Notable Features: C4-based theft protection, bitchin’ ski racks.
Citroen 2CV, ‘For Your Eyes Only’
Why It’s Great: Maybe the least expensive car Bond ever drove, it gets absolutely trashed after the above Lotus explodes. This one makes the list for its heart alone.
Notable Features: Seats, steering wheel, no clean body panels.
Why It’s Terrible: Apparently in an attempt to blend into the Florida Keys in the late ’80s, Bond is seen driving the hot-garbage Lincoln Mark VII LSC in License to Kill. This represents the nadir of James Bond’s automotive history (if you need proof that Bond can make a four-door sedan cool, check out the Ford Mondeo in Casino Royale).
Notable Features: None
Range Rover Classic Convertable, ‘Octopussy’
Why It’s Great: Not only is it a convertible Range Rover (which would probably be enough to make it on this list anyway), but it also tows a jet fighter hidden inside a horse trailer.
Notable Features: Jump seats, easy ingress and egress.
Aston Martin V8 Vantage Volante, ‘The Living Daylights’
Why It’s Great: We had to include one Aston on this list and it has to be the drop-top muscle car from Timothy Dalton’s first time as Bond. Not only was it powerful and beautiful, it also happened to be loaded to the gills with gadgets.
Notable Features: Missiles, lasers, skis, tire spikes, rocket boosters, heads-up display, radio scanner and self-destruct button.
T-55M5 Tank, ‘Goldeneye’
Why It’s Great: While maybe not technically be a car, it has the biggest gun of any Bond vehicle.
Notable Features: Convex explosive reactive armor, 100mm cannon.
BMW 750 iL, ‘Tomorrow Never Dies’
Why It’s Great: It was basically a 5,000-pound RC car, and Bond enjoys it as such.
Notable Features: Tear gas, rocket launcher, cable cutter, armor plating.