In the moment: Hang time in Bond’s Aston DB10, CAR+ April 2016 | CAR Magazine

In the moment: Hang time in Bond’s Aston DB10, CAR+ April 2016

Published: 14 March 2016 Updated: 18 March 2016

► Mark Higgins on being a 007 double
► Here’s how they performed that jump
► End footage shot in just one take

1) First time lucky

‘The jump was done in one take. We prepared for plenty of attempts, but the first run went very well and they were happy. This car had 10mm more ground clearance than the other DB10s built for the film, a rollcage and rally-spec dampers. Its grille was also reinforced to survive cleaving through the other car’s roof. It landed well…’ 

2) Beautiful balance

‘The DB10’s a perfect stunt car, really well balanced. Front-engined, rear-wheel-drive, it takes you back to the old Escort rally cars. The mid-engined Jaguar C-X75 was less predictable and a bit of a beast. The cars stood up to the punishment amazingly well. We prepared lots of spare cars but we didn’t need them.’

3) Back-slapping

‘One scene involved bouncing down steep stone steps. Although we had heavy-duty suspension it didn’t have anything like the travel of a WRC car… The approach was totally blind too, so the first run was interesting. You can practise all you like but you never know exactly how it’s going to go until you get on set.’ 

4) Driving a bomb

‘We were working very close to the River Tiber, and had diving equipment inside the cars just in case – enough oxygen for 30 minutes. We trained in the pool beforehand, My car was also fitted with a flamethrower for one of the scenes, so I was driving a potential bomb, but everything was made as safe as possible.’

5) 90mph on cobbles

‘We worked with a team of 1000 people, closing off a section of road per night for a month. Of all the things we did out there, sliding through Vatican Square was the most special. I had to come into frame sideways, and the cobbles meant I needed to be in a high gear; exit speed was around 90mph.’

6) The Pope was in

‘High-speed driving within the confines of Vatican City has never been done before. To get the Vatican in the background we had to do the shot the ‘wrong’ way round, sliding from a wide section of road to a narrow one. The Pope was in that evening, actually. We were hoping he might come down to watch…’

Read more from the March 2016 issue of CAR magazine

By James Taylor

Former features editor for CAR, occasional racer