Don't Dismiss Elon Musk's Submarine Car Idea Just Yet

Elon Musk confirms he bought James Bond's submarine car prop to make it work.

ByABC News
October 18, 2013, 10:12 AM

Oct. 18, 2013 — -- intro: When Elon Musk confirmed this week that he bought James Bond's iconic submarine car to make a real, working version, the CEO of Tesla Motors added to his list of sci-fi inspired ideas that he alone seems to be able to execute.

The movie prop car for 1977's "The Spy Who Loved Me" was auctioned off last month for $967,120 to an anonymous bidder. On Thursday, car site Jalopnik reported that Musk was the mystery buyer, who later revealed that he wants to make the car really transform into a submarine.

Read More: Man Discovers James Bond's Submarine Car in Storage Locker

Here's more about the native South African's hunt to make James Bond's adventures come to life and other high-flying investments.

quicklist:title: Submarine carmedia: 20611471text:

Musk, 42, is a self-professed fan of James Bond, and has a vivid memory of the iconic scene in "The Spy Who Loved Me," featuring actor Roger Moore as 007.

"It was amazing as a little kid in South Africa to watch James Bond in 'The Spy Who Loved Me' drive his Lotus Esprit off a pier, press a button and have it transform into a submarine underwater," Musk said in a statement. "I was disappointed to learn that it can't actually transform. What I'm going to do is upgrade it with a Tesla electric powertrain and try to make it transform for real."

In Photos: James Bond Submarine Car and Other Cool Wheels

quicklist:title: Automated driving media: 20029610text: Yes, Tesla Motors, based in Palo Alto, Calif., is a investment that has paid off for Musk as its stock has more than tripled in the last six months. But what Musk hopes to do next in automated driving will be a feat to watch.

Musk announced last month that he plans to make an automated car from scratch.

The company, founded in 2003, experienced a publicity hiccup when a video of a $70,000 Model S on fire went viral. But the company said the car, which it calls the world's first premium electric sedan, caught on fire due to damage to the battery and its system responded as expected.

Read More: Will YouTube Video of Seattle Car Fire Halt Tesla's (TSLA) Meteoric Rise?

quicklist:title: Hyperloopmedia: 19975857text: Over the summer, Musk released plans for the Hyperloop, a high-speed transit system linking Los Angeles and San Francisco. He called it "a cross between a Concord, a rail gun and an air hockey table" and described the concept with futuristic images and a 57-page design plan.

Read More: Elon Musk Reveals Design for High-Speed Transit System Hyperloop

quicklist:title: SpaceXmedia: 20611369text: Musk and his company, Space Exploration Technologies Corp., or SpaceX, is behind the first privately financed space flight. Musk founded SpaceX with money he made from co-founding payments tech firm PayPal.

The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket was the first privately-owned ship ever to return safely from earth orbit in 2010.

In 2012, the SpaceX Dragon became the first commercial spacecraft to deliver cargo to the International Space Station and return safely to earth. Designed to carry humans, the first manned test flight is expected to take place in two to three years, according to SpaceX.

quicklist:title: SolarCitymedia: 20611727text: Founded in 2006, SolarCity is one of the nation's largest installers of home solar panels. Musk is chairman of the San Mateo-based company. Musk invested about $10 million in seed money to make installing solar panels efficient and more affordable.