Classifieds Hero: 1996 007 Edition BMW Z3

After a 1996 007-edition BMW Z3 with only 37,000 miles on the clock? You don’t need to turn to Q branch, as we’ve got you covered

If you can't afford a James Bond Aston Martin, how about a special 007 edition BMW Z3? We have one for sale in our classified ads, right here.

For all the publicity surrounding BMW’s new Z3 in 007 adventure Goldeneye, the car appeared on screen for only a few moments. More criminal still was the lack of on-screen gadgets; no rockets were used, it didn’t employ the ejector seat nor did it dispatch ruthless villains at the press of a button. But it did have cup holders, long before the Z8 of The World is Not Enough.

This lack of action isn’t without reason, however. The deal was struck with BMW so late into the film’s production that there was little space in the script for the Z3 nor much time to shoot footage.

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In fact, BMW were so adamant that no person outside Goldeneye's film crew should see the vehicle, the Bavarian firm whisked it away the very second cameras stopped rolling at the end of each day. They went as far as to employ 24-hour security, keeping the Z3 firmly under lock and key.

The producers weren’t allowed to disturb the shape, either. BMW were adamant about ensuring the cinema-going public saw the styling for all that it was. Thus, gadgets are only talked about and never utilised. Except for the cup holders.

‘British industry had fallen on tough times really, and we had to go with a German manufacturer’, explained Goldeneye producer Michael G Wilson. ‘What happens when you do these stunts it’s necessary to get a lot of co-operation from the manufacturer’.

‘This was the cream of product placement. There was a huge appreciation for Bond within the BMW organization,’ Graham Biggs of BMW GB once clarified. ‘I think the chairman was a particular fan, which always helps!’

Nevertheless, BMW mounted an intense publicity campaign to great success, turning the car into something of a celebrity. Besides establishing the Z3 as a genuine ‘Bond car’, the association with new boy Pierce Brosnan’s incarnation of 007 helped shift over 300,000 models. The entire first year’s allocation sold out before the first one arrived in showrooms.

However, not all of these were the sacred ‘007 Edition’. Only 100 movie-specials were manufactured. Offered as a special promotion through Nieman Marcus’ famed Christmas catalog, these highly lucrative Z3s came in the same Atlantic Blue and Taupe leather livery as 007's Goldeneye Z3.

They were equipped with either automatic or manual transmission, air conditioning, power seats, electric windows wood grain interior trim, trunk-mounted CD changer, custom 007 Edition floor mats, unique exterior chrome accents, a rear deck luggage rack with luggage shell containing fitted cases and discrete model identification. Even at a cost back in 1995 of $35,000, they sold out within 24 hours.

Naturally, besides being coveted by collectors, these vehicles never appear for sale in the mainstream market; rather, exchanging hands privately for serious amounts of cash. That’s why, upon clocking this in our classifieds, we had to share the news.

You can buy this 007-edition Z3!

The previous owner of this particular vehicle had searched for a 007 edition Z3 over the best part of four years before taking custody of this one. Over the past five years, the owner has only ever found a further 5 examples appear for re-homing. Wearing chassis number LE00733, this is car 34 of the 100-vehicle production run.

Although half of the 100 cars were equipped with automatic transmission, arguably killing all sporting potential, this one features a five-speed manual. It also comes with an incredible number of original extras, including every single piece of it's original documentation.

  • 1995 Neiman Marcus Christmas catalog that it was featured in
  • Original sales invoice
  • Original window sticker
  • Congratulatory letter from the President of Neiman Marcus
  • Multiple congratulatory and build progress letters from BMW NA Head of Marketing Jim McDowell
  • Invites to Goldeneye's film premiere (part of the package you received when buying the car)
  • Complete BMW dealer service records and;
  • The 'Licensed To Sell' kit that as supplied to BMW dealers.

Amazingly, the sale also includes one of the original 007/BMW gold front plates that was on the vehicles when they were displayed in showrooms to coincide with the film's release.

The current owner, AutoClassics contributor and US market expert Andy Reid, said: ‘I have driven the car on the Hagerty Rally to Amelia Island and driven to BMW Zentrum in South Carolina, where it was built. It has also been shown at Amelia island during the car club celebration and at the Lime Rock Historic Weekend also to celebrate 100 years of BMW in 2016.’

‘The car is completely original except for tires and a new correct top. The original Atlanta Blue paint is in amazing condition and the Nevada beige leather interior is also in wonderful shape and original. The car also has the original 007 floor mats!’

So, a Bond fan in search of some genuine 007 memorabilia? Forget the Corgi DB5, this is a real Bond car in the exact specification enjoyed by Pierce Brosnan. Get yourself this 007 Z3 before someone else does, you’ll be hard pressed to find another! Get a closer look with the AutoClassics classifieds.

However – if it really is an Aston Martin DB5 you are after, the Goldeneye DB5 is also for sale. Find out more here.

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