For a short time, James Bond’s preference in car switched from British to Bavarian, as he swapped his Aston Martin keys for BMW ones. In the film Tomorrow Never Dies, Bond drives an E38-gen BMW 750iL in one of the more memorable scenes from Pierce Brosnan’s tenure as the iconic British spy. The E38 7 Series from this movie is outfitted with some of the most outrageous spy gadgets ever seen in a Bond film and, thankfully, BMW still has the very car used for the movie, replete with working gadgets.
In this new video from Supercar Blondie, we get to see some of those very gadgets and it’s funny to see what James Bond execs thought would be cool back in the late ’90s and early ’00s. For instance, the entire rear bumper slides out, showing off the road tacks that it drops onto the road for baddies to run over. My personal favorite is the blade-wheel BMW Roundel that lifts up out of the hood to cut a steel cable in the movie. It’s just such an incredibly specific gadget; was Q that concerned with steel cables clotheslining the car at that exact height? It’s so wonderfully corny James Bond and I love it.
Possibly the most interesting aspect of this movie car is the fact that it actually has the working rig to allow the car to “drive itself”. In the film, Bond jumps in the back seat of the BMW 750iL and drives it remotely while ducking under the window line. To achieve this effect, the stunt crew and BMW developed a rig for a stunt driver to sit low in the back seat, under the window line and drive the car from there. Obviously, the driver couldn’t see while sitting that low behind the driver’s seat, so a screen was mounted just above the steering wheel for the driver to see.
As a massive James Bond fan, this video was pretty fun to watch. It’s the best of both worlds, BMW and James Bond. Check it out.