The spy who blew me... up. - The Q-Branch DB5

Words: Scott Blackburn

Composed to: Crass - Christ-The Album

large DB5.jpg

When in 1964 the Q-Branch of MI6 got hold of an Aston Martin DB5, they made something magical, as yet unrivalled in creative gadgetry. Not only was this mobile arsenal a fantastic experiment in how much you can cram into a DB5, it was also timelessly pretty. Since the '60s the famous DB5 has been updated, destroyed and rebuilt as MI6's best agent has put it through its paces, saving his life several times in the process.


The base car, the Aston Martin DB5 Superleggera, comes with a 4L straight six producing 282hp capable of pushing the little British roadster up to 143mph. With an impressive (for the '60s) 0-60 time of 8.1 seconds the DB5 was the perfect car of choice for an MI6 project build. When the Secret Intelligence Service first got hold of the car the only thing they fitted was the smoke screen. Thankfully they quickly decided this was boring and went mental with it.


By the time Q-Branch had finished, the DB5 was a compact mobile arsenal. It was fitted with revolving license plates, ejector seats, caltrop-dropper, oil dispenser, two Browning .30 calibre machine guns, tyre shredding blades, water jets, bullet-proof windscreen, a pop-up rear bullet shield, and a radar scanner and tracking screen. Just in case all that wasn't enough in 1995 (the days when fax machines were still a thing) it was fitted with some gadgets that haven't aged as well. Namely an Alpine 7817R car radio which doubled as a printer and communications device, you know, for all those times you've seen 007 print something.  


All of these modifications for attack, defence and speed ticket dodging in the case of the revolving plates make the Q-Branch DB5 an effective weapon against Britain's enemies, the DVLA included. As a testament to its usefulness the DB5 was in use as recently as 2012, transporting Bond and M to Skyfall Lodge in style and helping them stage a defence...shortly before being blown to bits. In 2015 however we did learn that the DB5 was being faithfully restored to its former glory.