James Bond’s 1969 Mercury Cougar XR-7 Convertible Is Looking for a New Owner
19 November 2020 - autoevolution
The upcoming Bond Street Sale held by Bonhams is the absolute go-to place for the true James Bond fan. If he or she also happens to be loaded, all the better.
One of the items included in the Bond Street Sale is perhaps even more special, given that it's what you would call an anomaly in the Bond universe: the 1969 Mercury Cougar XR-7 Convertible from the On Her Majesty's Secret Service film, an adaptation of the 1963 novel. This would be the sixth entry in the film franchise and the only one to star George Lazenby, at the time a model with no acting credits that was brought in to replace Sean Connery after he retired.
This film also marks one of those rare times when 007 drives a non-British vehicle, a muscle car in particular, and makes an attempt at living a regular life by marrying his love interest. While the film didn't fare excellently at the time, it has come to be regarded, along with the more recent Casino Royale, one of the most faithful adaptations of Ian Fleming's writing.
At the same, the car in question has attained cult status and become a big get with collectors, having been featured as a show car and appeared in museums. That 1969 Mercury Cougar XR-7 Convertible, still in impeccable condition, will be going under the hammer starting December 16 at Bonhams. The auction house estimates it could fetch between £100,000 and £150,000 ($132,000 and $198,000).
Unlike Bond's most famous ride, the Aston Martin DB5, this Cougar has no gadgets for a very simple reason: it's not his actual, government-issued ride, but belongs to Contessa Teresa "Tracy" di Vicenzo (Diana Rigg), who later becomes Mrs. Bond. Still, Bonhams is selling it with the ski rack and two pairs of wooden skis, as shown in the movie in the nail-biting snow and ice car chase.
You can see snippets from that chase in the video below. Under the hood of this gorgeous Cougar is a 335 hp Cobra Jet 428 V8 that takes it from zero to 60 in 5.6 seconds.