How do you keep pace with a globe-trotting super-spy in a crashed airplane chasing baddies in SUV's down a ski slope in the Alps? You turn a Toyota truck into a tank and watch Ken Block for driving lessons.
The twenty-fourth official James Bond film, SPECTRE, is currently filming a major action sequence in the Austrian Alps featuring a heavily used private jet, some snow-modified Land Rover Defenders, and a bunch of production people running around trying to keep up.
Luckily for everyone involved, and especially us, Performance Filmworks Inc. has the tools necessary to film the epic snowy scenes in a truck Bond-villain dreams are made of. According to the company's website, the heart of the beast is a supercharged 508 hp V8, and it pulls the truck to a top speed of 120mph. The Tundra has been heavily modified for the weight of a large adjustable camera crane, sporting a vicious looking snow plow, a custom rollbar, and all while maintaining a cargo capacity of 5 in an interior outfitted with all the necessary screens and other audio and visual systems necessary for production.
The company is based out of California and has worked on other large film productions including Quantum Of Solace, Fast Five, Drive, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and dozens of other major titles. According to IMDB, SPECTRE is the first major film production to use the "Off-road Trax Edge system." Their fleet of vehicles also include a railroad-based Chevy Suburban, Mercedes ML63 and ML55, and an Audi A6.
Unfortunately there is very little footage of the Trax Tundra in action, apart from two short clips on the company's Facebook page. I've spotted it filming in the background of a video at last year's Huckfest truck jumping contest, but can't find the footage it was shooting on the company's ass0ciated sites. I look forward to the vehicle hopefully featuring in the Special Features for the upcoming film.
The Bond franchise's actions sequences always seem to get crazier and crazier with each release, thus requiring more outlandish equipment.. like a Toyota Tank. The Bond team always seems capable of pushing far beyond the obligatory "Don't try this at home," with each film seemingly outdoing the ridiculous action of previous installments. You can check out more information on the other vehicles used in the sequences being filmed here, including some really cool Land Rover Defenders and a brand new Discovery Sport.
SPECTREis set to release in October of this year, and goes something like "A cryptic message from Bond's past sends him on a trail to uncover a sinister organization. While M battles political forces to keep the secret service alive, Bond peels back the layers of deceit to reveal the terrible truth behind SPECTRE." Along with the aforementioned sequence in the Alps, a car chase in Rome between the C-X75 and DB10 is planned, as well as a lot more to look forward to including over a dozen supercars hanging out in Italy.
Photos courtesy of Philipp Brunner, Brunner Images. Special thanks to Marcos from James Bond Brasil for the photos and details, and the rest of the information was pulled from the official sites of Performance Filmworks, Inc. Check out BeyondJamesBond.kinja.com for everything Bond related from the Kinjaverse.