Tales, Truths & Tirades – 8 September 2016


I fell in love with the Aston Martin DB5 the first time I saw it. I was nine years old and I saved every penny from my meagre allowance for six months before I could buy the Dinky Toys version. Oom Kourie Scholtz of Scholtz & Seun in Vrede kept my tiny model in a special drawer until I could pay for it.
Yes, you’ve guessed it. Goldfinger. James Bond, 1964. The DB5 was used again in Thunderball and after that the Astons stole the show in five more Bond films. No other James Bond vehicle would ever replace the Aston Martins of those early days in my mind.
Many cars have been used in the 007-films during the past five decades. But here’s a question: Do you know which vehicle was the very first car to feature in any James Bond movie? Remember the character John Strangways in Dr No? (Admit it, you only remember James and Honey Rider.) Strangways was the head of the Secret Service in Jamaica and he was shot by the Three Blind Mice, Dr No’s henchmen, inside this historic first vehicle to be seen in a Bond film. It was a dirty olive-green Ford Anglia 105E, the same model used forty years later in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets as Arthur Weasley’s car. (Weasley “charmed it to give it the capabilities of flight, invisibility and extra loading capacity”. Thanks, Wikipedia.)
The list of famous cars used in film and television is obviously subjective. Steve McQueen’s 1968 Ford Mustang GT390 from Bullitt should be there. The 1971 Pontiac LeMans driven by Gene Hackman during that car chase in The French Connection is a must. “Doc” Brown’s DeLorean in Back to the Future is a no-brainer. And don’t forget Herbie!
But what about a beat-up 1959 Peugeot convertible, Model 403, which seems to get better with age. My last-born recently dicovered the inimitable homicide detective, Lieutenant Columbo, and along with actor Peter Falk the celebrated Peugeot had re-entered my life. Love is always better the second time around.