Why the most famous James Bond car is a submarine ? Answer in drawings !

cars portrait explained

The most famous bond car is a submarine !

lotus esprit s1 wet nellie art print

If you remember this movie sequence of the spy who loved me: when Q landed in Sardinia with the white sports car, he had few words and explains things to James Bond about the vehicle.

The car's most notable feature, which iis remembered by anyone who saw the iconic movie is the ability to transform into a two-man submarine.

Build in the most clandestine workshop of MI6 by Mr gadget-man 'Q', here is what he could have told to 007 before giving the keys of the "Wet Nellie" white Lotus Esprit. Illustrated with intricate drawings and giving the shape of the vehicle when seen in the distance.

Here are the explanations with a video and live drawing.

Print can be found here on drawinside.

Lotus S1 only got a four-cylinder and lightweight body

Lotus reputation is to make incredible British car, not based on a big engine like ferrari but choosing the perfect combination between weight and power.

Power was from the 1,973 cc Lotus 4 cylinder engine (number 907) that could deliver 160 hp. These first spirit lotus became known as "Series 1" (or S1).

lotus esprit s1 lightweight 4 cylinders engine

The wedge-shaped fibreglass body was mounted on a steel backbone chassis. Total weight for a car is around 900kg, wich is super light !

For example, if a motorbike is following you, specially thoses fitted with a sidecar, there is enough power to overtake a lorry on a narrow scenic road and avoid a front collision. Wich is not the case for the late side car.

spy who loved me lorry side car lotus esprit

Road Rage, pursuit and submarine James bond car

For car pursuit and road raging, with the particular case of a shark trying to shoot you, there is a cement spray hidden behind the rear plate and can blind pursuers!

The cement jet sprayer is made of two nozzles, there are two others nozzles for submarine activities.

road rage jaws james bond cement spray lotus esprit

If the car is chased by an helicopter, an escape will be more difficult, especially if the pilot is a charming deadly lady.

helicopter chase spy who loved me lotus esprit

Just find a pier, fasten your seatbelt, ask if your passenger can swim then dive into the sea ! As simple as that.

lotus esprit diving plunging into the sea escape james bond 007


Sub marine conversion : from the white arrow to The Wet Nellie

When the car start to dive into the sea, a Lotus car owner will think straightforward about the leaks and all the water getting inside the car. this is a common Lotus issue with british weather : leaks and water infiltrations in the car.

lotus esprit wet nellie conversion james bond

This car is not a standard Lotus and Q did a great job with massive use of scelant.  So it's time for james bond to turn the car into a submarine : activate the Lever, retract the wheels, and get all the submarine technology available : depth gauge, periscope and offensive weapons...

 car to submersible conversion of the lotus esprit s1

The famous James bond car equipement

The submersible is equipped with a periscope CCTV system, which rises from its housing where the bonnet joins the windscreen. Very usefull to "say goodbye to an uninvited guest." with firing a Surface to Air Missile !

wet nellie firing missile say goodbye helicopter

Two nozzles behind rear [plate are dedicated to cement spray, the two others are for black dye ink : the Esprit is able to dispense a think black dye to blind underwater pursuers, just like an octopus.

james bond submarine dye ink explosive mine

There is also another weapon : the contact mine could be released from beneath the car. Tanya knew it as she steal the blueprints 2 years earlier.

Torpedoes : the car can fire small but highly explosive torpedoes from the front bay located between the car's headlights.  Very effective for submarine pursuers.

wet nellie firing submarine torpedoes james bond car 007

Diving with class like James Bond: the lotus esprit Fish

How did the fish comes inside the car, a true mystery ! But James get it out with class with opening the electric window !

james bond lotus esprit beach eject fish


The Lotus esprit is not for for sale anymore. Ask Elon Musk !

Several cars were used for the movie, but the one used in the underwater scenes, wich is nick-named Wet Nellie, was bought by famous Tesla / Space X owner and businessman Elon Musk in 2013. With the serious project to bring it back to a real submersible and car machine, powered with electric Tesla engines !

Print of the Lotus Esprit S1 for sale !


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