Elon Musk bought a James Bond car for $1 million

Elon Musk spent nearly $1 million on a movie prop car. This is the Lotus Esprit S1, used in the 1977 film titled The Spy Who Loved Me.

The Lotus Esprit S1 is both a sophisticated road car and a submarine. It is also the hybrid design of the Lotus Esprit S1 that conquered Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla. He bought it for almost a million dollars. It’s during the filming of the movie The Spy Who Loved Me that the machine has earned its permanent name, the Wet Nellie. This nickname is a nod to an autogyro, so a semi-car, mid-helicopter called Little Nellie. The latter made an appearance in another Bond film, You Only Live Twice.

A story of chance

First, let’s go back to the history of the sale of this vehicle. In 1989, a Long Island couple purchased storage space for the low price of $100. After some tidying up, they discovered the Wet Nellie there, buried under a pile of blankets, AutoBlog recounts. Only, the couple not being big fans of James Bond films, they simply thought they had discovered a bizarre “mad scientist” car. It wasn’t until they hitched her to a trailer on the way home that a trucker informed them of the treasure they had in their hands.

An auction

In 2014, the couple then set about preparing the vehicle to sell it at auction. A buyer picked it up at RM Sotheby’s in 2013 for $997,000. Note that the car was not driving and had only been used as a movie prop. At the time, the production of the film had modified the vehicle by removing its wheels, changing the underbody, and making it so that it could really go underwater. The machine had four turbines powered by a battery.

As CNBC reports, Elon Musk later revealed that he had been the buyer of the stock and is the new owner. He planned to fit the underwater car with a “Tesla electric powertrain” so it could transform in real life. Another anecdote, the hybrid vehicle would have even inspired the Tesla Cybertruck.

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