Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Paul McCartney's Bond car sells for £1.3m

Paul McCartney's Aston Martin DB, the same model driven by James Bond in "Goldfinger," but without an ejector seat, sold for £1.3 million ($1,8 million) at auction this week.

Paul's car, originally in Sierra Blue, is now a 007-shade of silver and has been fully restored, right down to the Phillips turntable he had custom-installed back in 1964.

Here are some details on the car's history, and some pics, from Bonhams auction house.

Though Paul McCartney later owned an Aston Martin DB6, which has been the subject of extensive media coverage, this lesser known DB5 is believed to be the first Aston owned by the musician. He ordered it at a particularly important career juncture: just weeks after the Beatles' famous appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show and the completion of filming 'A Hard Day's Night', their first film. In a September 1967 profile of Paul McCartney, Time magazine wrote: 'Bachelor Paul, 25 (his favorite "bird" is 21-year old actress Jane Asher) is a movie addict, loves "the look of London" and tools around town in a spiffy blue Aston Martin DB5'.
This DB5 also made an impression on Roger McGuinn, guitarist with the Californian rock band, The Byrds. McGuinn once recalled a concert that his band performed during their 1965 UK tour. Apparently the Beatles were in attendance and, following the show, the two bands spent some time socialising. 'The next night,' recalled Guinn, 'I went to Paul McCartney's club in St James's and he took me out for a drive around London in his Aston Martin DB5. It was a really amazing time.'

Service records indicate that in 1970, when '1653/R' was fitted with a new clutch and received some other minor service work, the odometer reading was 40,513 miles. It is believed that the car first changed hands at around this time when it was sold to Truebell Stationers in Wandsworth, Southwest London. Subsequently, on 12th March 1983, the DB5 was acquired by John Richard Rogers of Ilford. Mr Rogers retained the Aston for 13 years before selling to John Hardy Shannon on 16th July 1996.

In 2002, '1653/R' was sold to a British collector who recognised the Aston's importance and decided that it was deserving of refurbishment. He commissioned Walter Baroni of Corsica, Milan, to carry out an extensive cosmetic restoration that included a bare-metal strip-down and repaint in the car's original colour of Sierra Blue, as well as the installation of a new interior. Upon returning to the UK, the Aston's brakes and the cylinder head were overhauled, courtesy of specialists Headshop Ltd in Wallington, Surrey.

Subsequently, '1635/R' was acquired by broadcaster and motoring enthusiast, Chris Evans, who purchased the car's most appropriate '64 MAC' registration for it. The Aston's next owner purchased the car at auction in 2012 and proceeded to commission a full restoration to concours standard. Accordingly, '1653/R' was despatched to Aston Martin specialists Alan Smith Motors of New Romney, Kent where it arrived still painted Sierra Blue and with a black leather interior.

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