On Film When the camouflage on Bond’s Aston Martin Vanquish V12 is compromised, Graves’ henchman, Zao, gives chase in his lethal Jaguar XKR. Ejecting the roof to reveal a Gatling gun and engaging the car’s thermal imaging system, Zao tracks Bond across a frozen lake. Their duel unfolds as an explosive ice ballet, Zao employing his car’s two missile systems before engaging a rear-mounted mortar. The sequence climaxes in the ice palace, where the Jaguar again uses its front-mounted missile system and attacks the Aston with a hydraulic battering ram before crashing through the floor and into the icy waters beneath.
The Vehicle The XKR started its life as the Jaguar XK8 (project code X100), which was launched in 1996 as the first generation of a new XK series. The XK8 was available in coupé or convertible body styles and with the new 4.0 litre Jaguar AJ-V8 engine. In 1998 the XKR was introduced with a supercharged version of the engine. From 2003 the engines were replaced by the 4.2-litre AJ34 engines in both the normally aspirated and supercharged versions.The filmmakers opted for the Jaguar XKR and its supercharged 400bhp AJ26 V8 engine for Zao’s character. The XKR’s 5.0-litre engine tops out at 155mph, covering 0-60mph in 5.2 seconds.
The Production With the script calling for a car chase between Bond and Zao on a frozen lake, the filmmakers chose to shoot in Jökulsárlón, a glacial lagoon bordering Vatnajökull National Park in south-eastern Iceland. This is a unique location where the still blue waters freeze with icebergs from the surrounding Breiðamerkurjökull Glacier embedded in the ice. Nine Jaguars were acquired for the film and special effects supervisor Chris Corbould modified four Jaguars for the driving sequence. These four cars, like the Astons used in the sequence, took three months to build. The second unit, under the supervision of Vic Armstrong, arrived in Iceland during late February and filmed for three weeks.
Modifications • Thermal imaging system
• Rear-mounted mini-gun – with 360-degree firing arc
• Nine-tube mortar system – in car’s boot
• 18 front-mounted heat-seeking missiles – firing from behind the retractable radiator grille
• Side-mounted missile system
• Hydraulic battering ram – with two prongs
• Modified wheels – with snow-chain tyre grips and ice spikes to boost traction
Sign up for 007 news from the world of James Bond. Receive exclusive updates and content – from behind-the-scenes stories, to the latest product launches – plus film clips and trivia from the Bond archive.