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Manchester City’s Fernandinho and James Bond’s Lotus Esprit ‘Submarine Car’ from RM Auctions

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Published: 25 July 2013

lotus esprit

Don Griffin © 2013 courtesy of RM Auctions.


Fernandinho is Manchester City’s most expensive signing this season – and the club’s second most expensive player in history with a transfer fee of £35.2m. 


He’s been described as one of the most athletic footballers on the planet, ‘defensively diligent’ and working ‘double-time as a deep-lying playmaker’. 


Settling down as a footballer in England brings many pressures, especially the competitive club wars between players’ personal lives. Who has the fastest car? Who has the coolest car? Who looks good in a classic car? Footballers love to impress the ladies with their motoring prowess. That is fair to say. 


fernandinho

Fernandinho. Clube Atlético Mineiro.


But if Manchester City’s new signing wants to make an impact off the pitch, he’ll need a car to match his supreme playmaking talents, a car like no other – one that cannot be reproduced.


If Brazil’s Fernandinho makes a trip to RM Auctions’ sale at the Battersea Evolution this September, he’ll discover 007’s Lotus Esprit ‘Submarine Car’ for sale. The Lotus Esprit Series 1 sports car was driven by Roger Moore in The Spy Who Loved Me and was kept in a Long Island storage unit for a decade after being used in the film. 


A couple bought this shipping container in 1989 – with no idea of its unique and invaluable contents. 


lotus esprit

Don Griffin © 2013 courtesy of RM Auctions.


It is the only version of the car to be built to be fully operational as a submarine, although as the cabin is not pressurised, the car was operated by a former Navy SEAL wearing a scuba mask in the film as a precautionary measure. 


Six other cars were built for filming the special stages of transformation from car to submarine. It was thought to have cost in the equivalent of £300,000 today to build this historic Lotus Esprit. Millions of school boys have models of the car sitting in boxes or on their shelves. It could easily fetch high six figures and with a few enthusiastic bidders, perhaps even sell for over £1m. 


lotus esprit

Don Griffin © 2013 courtesy of RM Auctions.


So if Fernandinho wants to show off his playmaking skills off the pitch too, he’ll surely have to consider an extravagant British purchase to show fans he’s here to stay. The Lotus Esprit Series 1 ‘Submarine Car’ from The Spy Who Loved Me could be the perfect car for Manchester City’s new midfield star.


THE CAR CHASE FROM 'THE SPY WHO LOVED ME'


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