As a young child and huge James Bond fan I road-tested my gadget-laden toy Corgi Aston Martin DB5 to destruction.
Now, as a somewhat older child and with just as much glee, I’ve just found myself road-testing the real thing and – unlike 007 or the younger me – managed to return it safely without a mark on it.
Indeed my DB5 was fitted with almost all of the gadgets that generations of children – of all ages – have grown to love and fantasise about since it became the undoubted star of the 007 movie ‘Goldfinger’, alongside Sean Connery as the suave but deadly secret agent in the classic 1964 James Bond movie.
And I am now one of a very small and exclusive group of people in the world to have been given the chance to drive the car created in collaboration with EON Productions, makers of the James Bond films, without actually having to buy one…
"activeClass" : "wocc",
"pageCount" : "3.0",
"pageSize" : 1,
Looking and feeling as smug as any wannabe super-agent, I was at the wheel of the very first Aston Martin DB5 Goldfinger Continuation car, of which just 25 are being built for sale to well-heeled customers who can stretch to the £3.3million price tag.
That’s around 790 times more than the cost of the original DB5 when it was launched at the dawn of the Swinging Sixties, just ahead of its appearance in the 1964 Bond movie.
Dubbed ‘the most famous car in the world’, fewer than 900 of these original DB5s were built between 1963 and 1965 priced from £4,175.
After Goldfinger, the DB5 featured in six subsequent 007 films – Thunderball, GoldenEye, Tomorrow Never Dies, Casino Royale, Skyfall and Spectre, and is set to make another stunning appearance in the forthcoming No Time to Die in November.
In fact, a DB5 built for the 1965 007 movie Thunderball sold for a record £5.2million at auction in August 2019.
Behind the wheel of the incredibly special DB5, I could not help but think back to the hours of childhood joy spent activating the many gadgets on my Corgi 007 version complete with all the trimmings, of which more than 2.5million have been sold.
Mint original versions today really are worth their weight in gold – and probably much more – provided you’ve kept the box and still have the little blue passenger holding a gun to 007.
How many of those have been lost down the back of countless sofas and elsewhere over the decades as tiny hands pressed the toy version’s ejector seat mechanism?
Then in 2018 Lego launched a 1,290-piece DB5 costing £129.99.
Corgi sold more than 2.5 million of the gadget-laden Aston Martin DB5 Goldinger toy cars
Mint original versions like this one are worth their weight in gold – and probably much more – provided you’ve kept the box and still have the little blue passenger holding a gun to 007
Over the years I’ve also been lucky enough to meet many of the actors who have appeared in the 007 movies – including Bond women Maryam d’Abo from The Living Daylights, Michelle Yeoh from Tomorrow Never Dies, Cigar Girl Maria Grazia Cucinotta from The World is Not Enough , former Moneypenny Samantha Bond from Goldeneye and Tomorrow Never Dies, and even 007 producer Barbara Broccoli herself.
I’ve even had my head crushed in a vice-like grip by Dave Bautista who played villain Mr Hinx from Spectre while current Moneypenny Naomie Harris looked on.
I’ve also driven some of the stunt cars made especially for the movies too – including the gun and missile laden Aston Martin Vanquish from ‘Die Another Day.
But nothing compares to this – the real deal…
From 1964 to 2020: Daily Mail’s Ray Massey (right) had the chance to live-out his childhood dream of becoming James Bond for the day, taking to the wheel of one of Aston Martin’s £3.3m Goldfinger continuation cars equipped with the gadgets from the iconic Sean Connery film (left)