With it getting steadily more difficult to for me to find something that’s a true instant must-have, I was very pleasantly surprised to find this: the 1963 Aston Martin DB5, replete with Skyfall packaging and Bond-accurate plates and decoration. It’s a prototype car. It’s a film car. It’s a classic car. It’s iconic in a dozen different ways; how many more boxes can you tick?
It’s not quite an exaggeration to say that James Bond’s Aston Martin DB5 in Goldfinger is THE Aston Martin DB5, namely because the one he drove for much of the film was the original prototype. The original novel of Goldfinger was released in 1959 and predated the DB5's introduction, having Bond behind the wheel of a DB Mark III; of course, good ol’ marketing nudged the studio towards the latest and greatest model when making the film in 1964. I can’t say that was at all a bad decision, considering it’s still revered today.
You’ll find more foot-to-the-floor raw power in the DB5 Vantage. But in this, you’ll find machine guns, a lever-activated rear-windshield bullet shield, retractable blades in the rims, state-of-the-art radar with a range of 150 miles, a smoke screen, a bulletproof front windshield (which really begs the question of why the back windshield isn’t just also bulletproof), a smoke screen, whatever you call a thing that fires oil slicks, revolving number plates, and an all-important passenger ejector seat. No, these modifications are not factory standard.
As for the diecast, you’ll find a healthy amount of chrome on the underside to give it those nicely shiny front and back battering-ram bumpers (no, they don’t spring out like they did on the tie-in toys back in ‘64, but to be fair, they didn’t do that in the movie either), a pleasantly accurate interior, and tampos for all lights, both front and back, as well as the Aston Martin and DB5 badges and classic BMT 216A number plate on the back. (Skyfall had a “GB” bumper sticker to the left of the plate which is absent here; thus, technically, it’s not a recreation of it from Skyfall, but another film. Still, that’s its most iconic recent appearance, so...)
The chrome tarnishes a bit quick with dings and scrapes... but considering the condition of 007's cars usually, it’s definitely survived a lot worse. It looks like it’s been through a chase already! And instead of a usual Hot Wheels tampo stamped somewhere semi-subtle on the car to remind you it’s a Hot Wheels vehicle, which not even tie-in cars have been safe from lately, the logo is instead embossed on the underside.
In Goldfinger, the DB5 represented cutting-edge technology, the latest and greatest in luxury dream cars, kitted out with everything the staff could come up with. This really is what brought the idea of gadgets to the Bond franchise, as the staff threw on every single thing they thought would be cool in the moment (and wouldn’t be easy to replicate at home), leading to one brilliant, bizarre vehicle kitted out to the nines. But in Skyfall, it represents something different after all that time; it’s a car explicitly lacking in technology that 007 can’t trust, it’s a tie back to earlier days and simpler times. By standing the test of time, the DB5 has become essentially its own opposite. Sometimes the old ways are the best.
But no matter what, it absolutely hasn’t lost its cool factor.