LONDON: The “submarine car” used in James Bond film “The Spy Who Loved Me” was to go up for sale in London Monday evening, 24 years after it was “discovered” in a U.S. storage unit.
The white Lotus Esprit, which transformed into a submarine in the 1977 movie starring Roger Moore as 007, was expected to sell for up to 950,000 pounds ($1.48 million).
Known as “Wet Nellie” on the set of the film, the fully operational submarine car was among the contents of a storage unit in Long Island, New York, which was bought by a couple in a “blind” public auction in 1989.
Although six Esprit body shells were used in filming, only one was converted into a “submarine car,” RM Auctions said.
The car was placed in a prepaid storage unit for 10 years after filming. The contents of storage unit were sold sight unseen in 1989 when rental payments for the unit fell into delinquency.
“We have a great track record in selling incredible and iconic movie cars, and this particular Lotus is certainly up there among the most famous cars of all time,” RM Auctions Managing Director Max Girardo said.
The auction house previously sold the Aston Martin DB5 used by Sean Connery as James Bond in the “Goldfinger” and “Thunderball” movies for 2.9 million pounds in 2010.