Alongside £6k Nike trainers and a £32k handbag, auctioneer RM Sotheby’s recently sold a replica of the Series III that features in trailers of the upcoming Bond film, ‘No Time To Die’. Estimated at £20k-25k, the restored Land Rover unexpectedly stormed ahead to a mighty £55,200 plus fees – exceptionally strong money for a Series III.
The ‘Bond Edition’ SIII is a 2.25-litre petrol 88in ragtop in Marine Blue with bonnet-mounted spare wheel and black wheelarches, prepared by Yorkshire-based classic Land Rover specialist John Brown 4x4. ‘Restored to premium condition’ on a galvanised chassis and fitted with overdrive, seatbelt rail, Evander steering wheel by Exmoor Trim, side-facing rear seats and black wheelarches, the Land Rover resembles one which Daniel Craig is seen to drive in behind-the-scenes footage shot on-set in Jamaica (watch it below). The Bond Edition Series III is part of a limited run which are made to order, and around 25 have been built so far.
What makes this Series III so special?
‘We were anxious to pull out all the stops and provide the very best specification to date,’ says John Brown, proprietor of John Brown 4x4. ‘This vehicle was rebuilt recently onto a new galvanised chassis, and we were tasked with providing that vehicle with a full refurbishment and body makeover. We replaced quite a significant amount of the bodywork with new items and even went to the expense of applying new cappings. The underside received many hours of attention, replacing perfectly good shock absorbers with brand new items to give that crisp rebuild finish one would expect from a John Brown 4x4 Sotheby's collaboration.’
‘In light of the pandemic causing the delay of release of No Time to Die, we had the opportunity to fulfil demand and produce a number of vehicles for customers who had already seen them being produced by us.
The customer decides
Despite being replicas, customers have been able to adapt the spec to their taste – after all, we only catch fleeting glimpses of the Series III in the trailers, so some details about it aren’t yet known. ‘All of the vehicles varied a little in spec as they were adapted on a customer-by-customer basis,’ says John, ‘so those who requested an overdrive or a galvanised chassis could do so. We also had orders for more bespoke interiors and uprated steering wheels, sound systems, etc’
John Brown 4x4 doesn’t intend to send any further Bond Edition Series IIIs to auction at Sotheby’s, but is planning another collaboration with the auction house in the next few months.
What else do we know about Land Rovers in No Time To Die?
The upcoming Bond film is going to be a bit of a Land Rover fest, we're pleased to say. Released at the end of this month in the UK (early October if you're in the USA), No Time To Die features dramatic off-road action involving L663 Defender 110s (some of the first to be built, in fact), Range Rover Sport SVRs, this Series III and a Range Rover Classic for good measure.