Yachts featured in James Bond films

The James Bond films ooze luxury and class, so it’s no wonder they often feature a stunning superyacht of the time. From sailing to motor yachts, these astonishing vessels appear in a range of classic 007 scenes, playing the part in exhilarating action sequences and intimate romantic segments.

Since the first James Bond film was released in 1962, a large number of classic and modern yachts have made an appearance in the series. Yachting Pages lists 10 of the most popular from over the past 60 years.

1. Disco Volante in Thunderball (1965)

Disco Volante

Built in 1957, Disco Volante’s original name is Flying Saucer. Built by the Rodriquez Cantieri Messina shipyard (now part of Intermarine Group), it was one of the first yachts to feature in the 007 series. In the film, this PT 20 hydrofoil yacht is owned by fictional terrorist group SPECTRE. It is used by villain Emilio Largo as part of his disguise and to transport stolen atomic bombs.

The PT 20 hydrofoil is the world’s first ever commercial hydrofoil, and went into regular passenger service in 1956. There has been much effort to track the current location of the Flying Saucer. However, the boat looks to have been scrapped somewhere in the 1980s.

2. Turbocraft in Thunderball (1965)

Turbocraft

Designed by an aeronautical engineer, this boat was the first ever to feature water powered jets. During the 1960s, Buehler Turbocraft became the brand of choice for the rich and famous, with the Kennedy family, the secret service and the Soviet Union’s Nikita Khrushchev among its patrons.

The boat features in many scenes of the film, which was directed by Terence Young, and played host to Sean Connery’s Bond. After the success of the film, the brand aptly renamed this model ‘Thunderball’ as a tribute to the movie and became a huge commercial success.

3. Glastron GT-150 in Live and Let Die (1974)

Glastron GT-150

The Glastron GT-150 features in one of the most iconic 007 scenes in history. In the movie Live and Let Die, directed by Guy Hamilton, James Bond uses a Glastron GT-150 speedboat in a thrilling chase scene through the Louisiana marches. The boat made a record breaking 120-foot jump. 26 models were made by Glastron for filming; two boats were fully kitted out, while the rest of them were used for practice jumps. 17 of the Glastrons were damaged during filming.

4. Glastron Carlson CV23HT in Moonraker (1979)

Glastron Carlson

The Glastron Carlson CV23HT featured in Lewis Gilbert’s Moonraker. This composite boat is the rarest of the rare with only three given the one-off custom silver grain metal flaked paint job. However, what makes this boat so quintessentially James Bond is the level of customisation from Q Branch. They incorporated mines and torpedoes, and even a glider, which Bond uses to escape the boat as it crashes into the Iguazu Falls. There is only one of these boats known to still exist today, which is owned by the Ian Fleming Foundation.

5. Sunseeker Superhawk 34 in The World is Not Enough (1999)

Sunseeker Superhawk

Built in 1998, the Sunseeker Superhawk 34 sped down London’s River Thames at over 60mph in the longest ever Bond pre-title sequence in Michael Apted’s The World is Not Enough. The yacht was driven by assassin Giulietta da Vinci, who is trying to create nuclear mayhem with an automatic gun mounted on the back. 007, who is played by Pierce Brosnan, eventually destroys the boat with two mini torpedoes from his Q-Boat.

6. Sunseeker Predator 108 in Casino Royale (2006)

Sunseeker Predator 108

The Sunseeker Predator 108 represents the classic sporty styling that Sunseeker depicts in its yachts and superyachts. The yacht can reach a top speed of 45 knots courtesy of her two MTU 2000 series engines.

In Martin Campbell’s Casino Royale, the luxury motor yacht is owned by terrorist financier Le Chiffre, who is arguably one of the most spine-chilling villains in all the Bond films. For filming, producer EON Productions created full-scale sets of the yacht’s deck salon, aft cockpit and master stateroom, duplicating every aspect of equipment, luxury and style in the finest detail.

7. Spirit 54 in Casino Royale (2006)

Spirit 54

Spirit Yachts’ sleek Spirit 54 is an all-wood sailing yacht that featured in Casino Royale. The mahogany topsides, teak deck and classy curves are typical characteristics of the Suffolk, UK-based shipyard and ooze 007 elegance. With a spacious living area, complete with mahogany dining table and well-equipped galley, this yacht is perfect for day sailing. When the film Casino Royale was filmed in 2006, this was the first sailing yacht to pass through the Venice Grand Canal in 300 years.

8. Sunseeker Sovereign 17 in Quantum of Solace (2008)

Sunseeker Sovreign 17

As an iconic name in British yachting, Sunseeker’s first yacht, the Sunseeker Sovereign 17, featured in Marc Forster’s Quantum of Solace. Originally built in 1970, the Sunseeker Sovereign 17 was fully restored in 2005 to celebrate the company’s early years. The boat was used in the film to take Bond to a Tuscan villa.

Sunseeker’s managing director Robert Braithwaite appeared in the film as the speedboat’s captain. Braithwaite commented, “You can’t get any higher profile than a James Bond movie. It’s therefore very exciting to […] appear alongside Britain’s most famous secret agent.”

9. Regina in Skyfall (2012)

Regina

Built by Turkish shipyard Arkin Pruva Yachts and launched in 2011, the 56-metre (183-foot) sailing yacht Regina featured in Sam Mendes’ Skyfall. Featuring a sophisticated interior of simple yet elegant furnishings, she provides luxurious accommodation for up to 12 charter guests across six staterooms. Her full-beam aft master suite encompasses a private study, walk-in wardrobe and a spacious en-suite bathroom.

Filmed near Turkey, the yacht features in scenes with Bond and femme fatale Sévérine, which is followed by their famous steamy shower scene. What few people know is that the film crew couldn’t get all their gear below deck for Bond and Sévérine’s shower moment. Therefore, the scene was actually filmed in room 712 of the Four Seasons Hotel at Canary Wharf in London.

10. Spirit 46 in No Time to Die (2021)

Spirit 46

Built by Spirit Yachts, a Spirit 46 features in 2021 release No Time to Die, directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga. The yacht is seen in scenes where Bond has left active service and is enjoying a tranquil life in Jamaica. According to the shipyard, the sailing yacht is characterised by long overhangs and flush decks. She can reach 18 knots underway with the performance of a regatta racing yacht.

Sean McMillan, Spirit Yachts’ CEO and head of design, commented, “The James Bond films are a mainstay of British culture and we are honoured to be continuing our partnership with such an iconic brand.”


Want to find out about other film-star superyachts? Read about 8 of the most sensational superyachts in films.


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