Said to be the most expensive stunt scene in history, the chase sequence in Spectre, the 24th James Bond film, involved a plane and Land Rover Defenders. The scene required vehicles that looked aggressive and sinister, but that could also be hit and rolled. The Jaguar Land Rover Special Operations team partnered with Bowler to transform 10 Santorini Black crew-cab 110s into what they called the SVX Specter Defender.
The Defenders were outfitted with 37-inch tyres and a heavy-duty roll cage. The suspensions were also strengthened using rose joints and bilstein rally dampers. A special hydraulic handbrake was installed in a new location. The engines were tuned up to 180 horsepower. Of the ten Defenders, only three were designated as hero vehicles and used for close-up shots. The rest were all destroyed.
RM Sotheby’s is auctioning off one of those three vehicles. The one on the block was hit by the plane that James Bond was flying, which resulted in the chassis being bent (it only had 16 miles on the odometer at the time). The Defender does function, but because of the bent chassis, it is unfit for the road.
Sam Mendes, the Director of Spectre, said, “Viewers expect stunts in a James Bond movie to be real.” The bent chassis of this model is proof of just how real those stunts are.