Lotus Esprit
Chantel Brink
Chantel Brink
May 28, 2024 ·  3 min read

Elon Musk Paid Almost $1M For An Abandoned Car Found By Couple for $100 In Storage Unit

Elon Musk, the visionary behind companies like Tesla and SpaceX, is known for his bold ideas and extravagant tastes. While his ventures in space exploration and electric vehicles often make headlines, one of his more peculiar purchases has a fascinating history of its own. In 2013, Musk splurged nearly a million dollars on a car with a cinematic legacy that few could resist.

A Hidden Treasure in an Ordinary Storage Unit

In 1989, a young couple from Long Island, New York, stumbled upon an extraordinary find in the most unassuming of places—a storage unit.
Image Credit: Unsplash

In 1989, a young couple from Long Island, New York, stumbled upon an extraordinary find in the most unassuming of places—a storage unit. Having paid just $100 for the unclaimed unit, they had no inkling of the treasure that lay hidden inside. Underneath a pile of dusty blankets was a 1976 Lotus Esprit sports car, famous for its role in the 1977 James Bond movie, The Spy Who Loved Me.

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The Iconic Bond Car

The couple who found the Lotus had never seen a James Bond movie.
Image Credit: Jacob SUTTON/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

The Lotus Esprit in question wasn’t just any sports car. In the film, it transformed into a submarine and fired missiles underwater, becoming one of the most memorable gadgets in Bond history. This car, with its unique modifications and cinematic history, was an iconic piece of movie memorabilia.

An Unexpected Discovery

According to Doug Redenius, the man who authenticated the car, they were initially unaware of its significance.
Image Credit: Inhabitat

The couple who found the Lotus had never seen a James Bond movie. According to Doug Redenius, the man who authenticated the car, they were initially unaware of its significance. Their plan was simply to fix its dented roof and make some general improvements. However, upon transporting the car, truckers recognized it and informed the couple of its true value.

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From Exhibit to Auction

Eventually, the couple decided to auction it off, seeking a new home for their serendipitous find.
Image Credit: ebay.com

Over the next two decades, the car was displayed at various exhibits, attracting attention from car enthusiasts and Bond fans alike. Eventually, the couple decided to auction it off, seeking a new home for their serendipitous find. The auction was held by RM Sotheby, where the car was sold to a secret buyer for a staggering $997,000.

Elon Musk’s Connection to the Bond Car

The anonymous buyer was later revealed to be none other than Elon Musk.
Image Credit: Eon Productions

The anonymous buyer was later revealed to be none other than Elon Musk. The tech mogul, known for his ambitious goals and love for innovative technology, saw something special in the Bond car. Musk’s acquisition of the Lotus Esprit fits perfectly with his larger-than-life persona and his penchant for high-profile, quirky purchases.

A Perfect Fit for Musk’s Vision

Musk’s purchase of the Bond car is more than just a whimsy of wealth.
Image Credit: Eon Productions

Elon Musk’s purchase of the Bond car is more than just a whimsy of wealth. It reflects his broader vision and fascination with futuristic technology. Musk has often spoken about the influence of science fiction on his work, and owning a piece of Bond history is a testament to this influence. The car, with its filmic transformation into a submarine, resonates with Musk’s innovative spirit and his ventures that blur the lines between reality and fantasy.

The Legacy of the Lotus Esprit

Today, the Lotus Esprit remains a symbol of cinematic history and technological wonder.
Image Credit: James Bond Fandom

Today, the Lotus Esprit remains a symbol of cinematic history and technological wonder. Its journey from a forgotten storage unit to Elon Musk’s collection is a story of unexpected discovery and the enduring allure of James Bond. For Musk, it is another step in his journey of blending the extraordinary with the everyday. Continually pushing the boundaries of what is possible. In a world where technology and imagination often intersect, Musk’s purchase of the Bond car is a fitting chapter in his storied career. Thus highlighting his unyielding drive to turn dreams into reality.

H/t: Unilad

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