More like this:

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

Published: 20 October 2008

Ranking: 17      

Year of release: 1968

The car: Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

Why it’s special: Because it was written by Ian Fleming – whose stories revelled in cool cars – it always looked promising, but the crisp script, catchy score and excellent cast (featuring Goldfinger himself, Benny Hill and the unforgettable Robert Helpmann as the fiendish child-catcher) it turned into a copper-bottomed classic.

Best bit: Being car fans we ought to mention Chitty itself, which was hand-built for the movie and not based on any particular classic racer. Four were built, and the proper ‘driving’ version had a Ford Zodiac 3.0-litre V6 engine. One version did actually fly, but only when hung beneath a helicopter.

Pub fact: Although the movie cars were tailor made, Fleming’s book was influenced by the aero-engined racing cars built by Count Louis Zborowski in the early 1920s.

Plot overview: Based on Ian Fleming’s children’s favourite, this is the tale of inventor Caractacus Potts, who turns a rusted wreck into the titular super car, ready for an adventure into the mysteriously childless barony of Vulgaria.

For: ‘There are cheeldren here somewhere. I can smell them.’

Against: Truly Scrumptious – a cinematic soundtrack low point.

CAR verdict: You gotta love it.

Is this really the best car in film history? Click ‘Add your comment’ and have your say


Back to top

By Greg Fountain

CAR's former managing editor, editor, caption chiseller, noticer of ironies