January 21, 2006
James Bond car sells for $1.9 million
PHOENIX, Arizona -- A Swiss businessman won the keys to James Bond's silver 1965 Aston Martin DB5 coupe on Friday with a $1.9 million bid at an annual classic car auction in Arizona.
The 45-year-old man, who did not want to be identified, placed his bids over the telephone through friend and car dealer Beat Roos to win the gadget-packed 007 car used in such classics as "Goldfinger" and "Thunderball." Both men live in Bern, Switzerland.
"His instructions were to bring the car back to Switzerland," Roos said.
The winner, who was bidding in his first auction, will add the car to a collection of some dozen vehicles that includes classic Aston Martins and Porsches.
Auction officials had estimated that Bond's vehicle could fetch between $1.5 million and $2.5 million.
Two other classics cars also were sold, with bidders paying $565,000 for gangster Al Capone's 1928 Cadillac sedan and $195,000 for country music singer Hank Williams Jr.'s 1964 Pontiac Bonneville convertible, officials said.
All three vehicles had been at the Smoky Mountain Car Museum in Tennessee.
The sale, presented by Canada's RM Auctions, is one of five held by different companies in the Phoenix area through the end of the month. More than $100 million is expected to be spent on vehicles of all makes and sizes.