James Bond memorabilia up for grabs

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London, Nov 27 : Brit auction house Bonhams is auctioning off James Bond memorabilia at London's Olympia on December 1.

Items that are being auctioned off include the 'swimming' Lotus Esprit from The Spy Who Loved Me, and other collectors' cars, motorcycles and related ephemera.

The 1976 Esprit was recently restored, and according to the director of engineering at Lotus Cars, Roger Becker, this is the only one of the two fully functioning Esprits to be fitted with the missile launch button on the gear lever and the revised housing for the clock/periscope screen.

Becker had driven it during the car chases in The Spy Who Loved Me, starring Roger Moore as agent 007, and it is the same car in which Q instructs Bond about its various functions.

After filming, it went back to Lotus to be returned to standard specification and trim, and eventually found its way to Germany, and its current owner commissioned the original trimmer Nick Fulcher to return the Esprit to its Bond appearance.

The price for the car has not been revealed and Bonhams says, "refer to department", which means that it would cost a lot.

Another Bond-related item is the number plate AU1, the registration borne by arch-villain Auric Goldfinger's Rolls-Royce Phantom III in the Sean Connery-era Bond outing, Goldfinger.

AU1 was issued in Nottingham in 1903 and remained in the original holder's family until the mid-1990s.

Offered with a V778 retention certificate, the registration is estimated at 80,000 pounds to 100,000 pounds, reports the Telegraph. The sale takes place on December 1 at Olympia 2 on Hammersmith Road, London, and for more details, log onto www.bonhams.com/cars.

ANI

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