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Friday, March 22, 2013

National Motor Museum’s Ian Fleming Connection

Apart from the Bond in Motion exhibit currently running at Beaulieu, the National Motor Museum has at least two vehicles in its own collection with a connection to Ian Fleming.

1930 Bentley Blower
by Kate Tompkins
First up we have this 1930 Bentley Blower with a 4 1/2 litre supercharged engine. According to its plaque, the supercharger was designed by Amherst Villiers, a friend of Ian Fleming’s. Probably not coincidentally, Bond drove a similar car in the original versions of Fleming’s novels Moonraker, Casino Royale, and Live and Let Die. Well, it was fast and sporty, if a trifle old-fashioned. Then again, Casino Royale was published in 1953.

Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang
by Kate Tompkins
The second car has nothing to do with Bond at all, but is the subject of children’s book and movie Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang. Yes, the same Ian Fleming. According to Wikipedia, he wrote the story for his son, and had the first volume published in 1964. The first Q-modified car doesn’t show up until 1964’s Goldfinger. Hmm.

By the way, there’s an interesting slide show by Evans Halshaw on the evolution of the Bond cars here. They’re all downloadable as wallpaper.

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