Cue the signature James Bond Music. As the twang of the guitar resonates, picture Sir James slipping behind the wheel of his exotic steed, luscious vixen at his side. In a flash, he's away - the top secret device securely stored in the trunk, his still smoking Walther PPK in his shoulder holster and the vixen, just starting to smolder… You wouldn't want James in just ANY car, would you? Of course not. But, if you are a reader of Ian Flemings's novels, you know that 007 wasn't a kid. He was a mature man of taste and civility. Regardless of what the movies have done to his original image, he wasn't a person given to glitz or flash. He liked his martinis, Rolex watches and automobiles to be classics. Enter the BMW M6 Grand Coupe.
While the world loves (deservedly so) BMW's 3 Series cars, people of means and maturing have been moving upmarket to the 5 and 7 Series automobiles. These offerings maintain that elusive "BMW-ness" - fun to drive, safe as a Swiss bank account but with just enough sportiness to preserve that youthful opinion you have of yourself. But BMW has done research and while the 5 and 7 Series cars sell well enough, there is still a segment of the buying public that needs the qualities of a bigger, more powerful car but also wants to feed the boy (or girl) racer that still lives within. Did I mention that this person may also need a back seat?
Enter the M6 Grand Coupe - my suggestion for James Bond's next car. The M6 coupe is a personal luxury car with gobs of style, power and sex appeal. But since James Bond is really quite mature, four doors just makes more sense. (You have to take Miss Moneypenny, M and Q out for a drink, every once in a while, don't you?) The BMW M6 is the perfect car for fast, safe travel but not so flashy that it would set off the alarm bells at the old KGB.
In addition to having a real back seat, the M6 has all of the proper M goodies - huge brakes (maybe the best of any sedan in the world), spectacular seating, phenomenal power - 560 twin-turbo charged horsepower and, amazing in this price range, a no-charge, optional, manual 6-speed transmission!
On the open road, the M6 commands the asphalt. If 007 was being chased by anything other than a fighter jet, there is little out there that could keep up. Top speed is nearly double the legal limit in the USA and it gets there in a hurry. (Yes, confirmed on the test track!) Stability at any speed is not to be believed. The driver - licensed by Her Majesty's Secret Service or not - owns the road.
Of course, power, performance and panache come at a price. The 4.4 liter engine is a thirsty beast, squeezing only about 20 MPG from a gallon of high-test petrol. It's also quite heavy - 2 ton heavy, governor! And the non-optioned window sticker starts at a $115,000 (without the $1,300 gas guzzler tax). Throw in the nearly $10,000 ceramic brakes (recommended), the $1,300 heads-up display (highly recommended), sales taxes and a remarkable B&O sound system (at $3,700, I recommend you test listen before plunking down the cash) and you're talking about a nearly $150,000 vehicle. Crikey!
Personally, I think James Bond would approve and look to see him behind the wheel of one in his next movie. If you have 007 fantasies, (and who doesn't, really?) the BMW M6 Grand Coupe with the 6-speed manual of course, may be your next car.
Cue the Bond theme...