With the 23rd James Bond movie 'Skyfall' premiering in the US this Friday, we've come to realize that Mr. 007 has given guys a lot to be jealous of during his 50 years on the big screen. Not only does he get paid to travel the world in first-class luxury, play with all of the coolest gadgets, and seduce the world's most unbelievably beautiful women, he also has access to a bottomless garage of kick-ass cars.
Bond's latest adventure in 'Skyfall' sees both the return of Daniel Craig as the internationally recognized secret agent and the return of the iconic Aston Martin DB5, made famous by Sean Connery's run in 'Goldfinger.' However, we'd be happy to return to our boring 9-to-5 jobs after just touching any one of his high-tech vehicles, whether it be the BMW from 'The World Is Not Enough' or the Lotus Esprit from 'The Spy Who Loved Me.' So, as the debut of 'Skyfall' prompts us to recollect on all our favorite James Bond movies and moments, here are the best 007 cars our asses are dying to sit in for more than five minutes. (Hey, asses have dreams too!)
Aston Martin DB5
'Goldfinger,' 'Goldeneye' and 'Skyfall'
Believe it or not, the Sean Connery James Bond actually scoffed at the idea of using the Aston Martin in the field instead of his beloved posh Bentley in 'Goldfinger,' but it has since become the car that all Bond vehicles are measured by in subsequent sequels. The car even made its grand return to the series in Pierce Bronson's attempt to revive the character. Not only did it retain more high-tech gadgets than a Sharper Image warehouse, but it was a perfect mix of upper-class beauty and stylish car coolness. It's also one of the more sought after movie collectibles since the original was just sold at an auction for more than $4 million. Sure the gadgets may not work the same way they did in the movies, but just the sight of a pair of automatic belt-fed machine guns popping out of the hood could certainly open up a lot of traffic on the highway.
'The World is Not Enough'
The BMW Z8 might be one of the more posh roadsters in James Bond's garage, but don't let that fool you into thinking it's any less menacing. In fact, we'd willingly drive a beat-up Volvo station wagon if the standard options included twin-mounted rocket launchers and covert listening devices. It's also not a bad looking ride as far as BMWs go and it has an engine that sounds like the hounds of hell are barreling down on whatever foes are chasing us through the British coastline. Sadly, it does have a fatal flaw: it's no match for helicopter-mounted buzzsaws.
Ford Mustang Mach 1
'Diamonds Are Forever'
Bond usually gets to drive around in fancy, upper-class cars that are only sold to members of the British aristocracy. It was nice to see him take the wheel of a classic American muscle car for once while he tooled around Las Vegas, trying to escape the clutches of the long arm of local law enforcement. This vehicle doesn't have any special gadgets like hidden weaponry or special listening devices, but Bond's adaptable driving skills make it special in its own right. And besides, history and Steve McQueen have proven that Mustangs don't need fancy extra features to be cool.
Aston Martin V8 Vantage Volante
'The Living Daylights'
Aston Martins and James Bond go together like martinis and... well, James Bond. So it was great to see 007 return to the only partner he trusts in the field with this very cool piece of automotive greatness. Not only does it look slick, and perform with the strength and steadiness of a Preakness trained thoroughbred, but it's packed from the chassis to the convertible roof with a host of gadgets, including heat-seeking missiles, tires with retractable spikes, lasers that can literally cut other cars in half, and even a f---ing rear jet engine. It's the Swiss Army Knife of James Bond's cars. Hell, it probably even comes with a toothpick.
Lotus Esprit S1
'The Spy Who Loved Me'
On the outside, it may be one of the less-impressive-looking rides in Bond's garage, but like all great cars, what truly makes it great is what's underneath the hood. Sure it's not as fast as your average supercar with its average acceleration time of 0-60 mph in 8 seconds, but the Lotus Esprit S1 has a host of other cool features, like the gearbox taken from the Citroen SM and racing standard brakes. Oh, and did we mention that it turns into a freaking submarine?!
'Die Another Day'
This marvel of automotive machinery would be impressive enough on its own without Bond's usual bevy of bawdy spy gadgets. The 5-liter, supercharged V8 engine gives it a kick that can only be reproduced by a star soccer player aiming the ball directly for your crotch and produces a sound that would make God Himself wet His divine pants. Of course, Q's little additions like an impressive invisible camouflage mode make the Jaguar XKR twice as cool as it already is. (We didn't intend to make an ice pun there.)
Aston Martin DBS
'Casino Royale' and 'Quantum of Solace'
Ready for another Aston Martin? The gadgets stuffed into this classic Bond beauty might only get as good as an in-dash defibrillator that gives its driver a chance to utter a clever death quip at a high-stakes poker game, like, “That last hand nearly killed me” (we would have gone with “Sorry, my heart wasn't in that last hand”). However, this Aston Martin DBS doesn't need an overhaul. It's about as close to perfect as any car of its ilk can be and it's just fun to be seen in it as you zoom past rows of drooling drivers. In fact, we had a hard time watching Bond roll this beauty a record-setting seven times to avoid hitting his beloved. At least she went out with a bang. (We mean the car, sickos.)
'Tomorrow Never Dies'
The BMW 750iL may look like it's for a high-class businessman who needs to tell the world that he's important and has to get to his office right away or a million investors are going to have to make other college plans for their kids, but it's got some some nifty extras courtesy of Q and the British Secret Service. Not only does it have all of the standard spy extras like side-to-side smoke screen and front-mounted rocket launchers, but it can also be fully operated and driven by your cellphone. That's assuming you're in an area with good reception and no roaming charges.
Danny Gallagher is a freelance writer, reporter, humorist and Bond girl understudy. He is also a regular contributor to GuySpeed.com. He can be found on the web at www.dannygallagher.net and on Twitter @thisisdannyg.