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Help Us Decide: Which James Bond Actor Was The Best Driver?

This isn’t going to be easy

Audrey Davis
October 05 2021

We want to settle this once and for all. 

Dr. No car chase: MGM

Which Bond was the best driver? It’s certainly no easy task to rank the Bonds on the basis of their driving skills, so let’s lay down some criteria first. Clearly, Bond should be driving a cool car, so points for that, but it’s also important to acknowledge that Bond vehicles come in all shapes and sizes. Remember the submarine from For Your Eyes Only (1981)? What about the Tuk Tuk taxi from Octopussy (1983), or the Honda All-Terrain Cycle from Diamonds are Forever (1971)? 

So, we want our Bonds to be sound technically as drivers, we want them to be driving a cool car, and we’re looking for a certain, Je ne sais quoi – that “it” factor behind every iconic moment from the franchise. With that out of the way, let’s go Bond by Bond:

Sean Connery actually loses points for that last one, since he looks objectively ridiculous driving a tiny ATC in a bespoke suit. A great Bond driver needs to be able to maintain his signature debonair style, no matter what kind of vehicle he’s steering. But Connery is still in the running here. After all, he’s the first Bond to get behind the wheel of the legendary Aston Martin DB5 in Goldfinger (1964). Not only is this car the quintessential Bond vehicle, but it’s also gadget-laden without compromising style.

Let’s move on to Roger Moore, who could easily win this competition if we judged based on versatility and adaptability alone. Moore’s campy Bond seemed to do particularly well in the water, piloting a high-speed boat in Live and Let Die (1973) that performed a world-record 110-foot jump. Although a stuntman took care of that part, Moore did learn to drive the boat for real, and it wasn’t even the only landmark stunt he presided over – his Bond also drove the 1974 AMC Hornet that achieved a one-take 360-degree jump in The Man with the Golden Gun (1974).

1974 AMC Hornet: The Man With The Golden Gun 
One last note on Moore – his 007 knew how to have fun behind the wheel of just about anything, and didn’t need to rely on luxury Aston Martins for speed. He was once able to outrun bad guys with only a Citroën 2CV at his disposal, which is pretty impressive in our book, but some viewers might prefer seeing Bond in something more stylish.

Pierce Brosnan’s Bond loved a good gadget, but that didn’t necessarily make him a better driver. For example, while his remote control-operated BMW 750iL could teach Tesla a thing or two about autonomous cars, it doesn’t inspire much confidence in Bond’s actual driving abilities. Which means we have to move on to the current Bond, who has helped to modernize the franchise and re-solidify the sacred relationship between Bond and Aston Martin. In fact, the Aston Martin DBS that Daniel Craig drives in Casino Royale (2006) holds world record for most cannon rolls ever completed in a vehicular stunt (seven)! And don’t get us started on the DB10 he drives in Spectre (2015), which might be the most beautiful Bond car of them all – and gives Craig the distinction of being the only Bond to have a real-life Aston Martin designed specifically for one of his films.

Aston Martin DB10: MotorTrend/Twitter

So, who’s the best Bond driver? We’ll let you be the judge, but allow us to enter a dark horse candidate first. In 1969’s On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, George Lazenby became the first and only Bond to marry, choosing none other than Dame Diana Rigg’s Tracy Draco – or Tracy Bond, to use her married name. Which means Rigg was technically a Bond as well, and she helmed a helluva chase scene in the 1969 Mercury Cougar that the Bonds drive through snowy Switzerland. It’s a left field choice for sure – but with James Bond movies, there’s always going to be a few twists and turns.



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