Aston Martin


Aston Martin

1913: Bamford and Martin Ltd. was founded. The name Aston Martin was coined next year, after the Aston Hill climb.

A 1928 Aston Martin 11/2 litre standard sports model, chassis #TS10, engine #ST18 sold for £115,000 at Bonham's Bond Street Sale auction (16 Dec. 2020).

1947: Aston Martin was bought by David Brown Ltd, hence 'DB'; the purchase included, "the Atom – a 2.0-litre four-cylinder prototype intended for post-war production" — Bonhams. That year, Brown also bought Lagonda, and formed Aston Martin Lagonda. The Lagonda range continued for a decade or so and then the name was used intermittently for larger cars made by the company.

A 1950 Aston Martin two-litre Sports Drophead Coupe sold for £172,500 at Bonhams Bond Street auction, 16 Dec. 2022. "With the DB2 ready for release, manufacture of the two litre Sports (retrospectively known as the 'DB1') was halted in mid-1950 after only 15 production models had been made, plus one Team Car. It is thus the rarest of all the 'David Brown' Aston Martin production models." — Bonhams.

1950: Aston Martin DB2.

1956-1959: Racing, four DBR1 built.
1957 DBR1
In August 2017, a 1956 DBR1, chassis #DBR1/1, sold for us$$22,550,000 at RM Sotheby's Monterey auction.

1957: Aston Martin DB3. James Bond 007 drove one of these, from the car pool, in Ian Fleming's novel Goldfinger; it morphed into a DB5 in the movie. Bond was a staunch Bentley owner in Fleming's books.

1958: Aston Martin DB4.
2019, December 7: A 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT 'lightweight' 4.2 Sports Saloon, reg SCM 971, chassis #DB4GT/0169/R, sold for £2,367,000 at Bonhams Bond Street auction in London.  2021 August: A 1959 Aston Martin DB4GT lightweight, chassis #DB4GT/0168/L, engine #370/0168/GT sold for us$3,855,000 at RM Sotheby's Monterey Auction.

1959: DBR1s won at the Nurburgring, Le Mans (DBR1/2, Carroll Shelby & Roy Salvadori) & the RAC Tourist Trophy, and took the world sportscar championship.

A 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT by Zagato sold for £10,081,500 at Bonhams Goodwoood Festival of Speed auction, 13 July 2018.
A 1962 Aston Martin DB4GT by Zagato, chassis #DB4GT/0186/R, engine #370/0186/GT, sold for us$14,000,000 at RM Sotheby's 'Driven by Disruption' auction, New York, on 10 Dec. 2015.

1963: Aston Martin entered a one-off Grand Touring Competition Prototype, chassis #DP215, in Le Mans. The car sold for us$21,455,000 at RM Sotheby's Monterey auction in August 2018.

1963: Aston Martin DB5, new £4,175, £4,490 convertible. Aston Martin is said to have built 1021 DB5s to 1965.

1964 DB5
1964: Goldfinger, starring Sean Connery as James Bond 007, featured an Aston Martin DB5 with certain "extras" – rotating number plates, rear bullet-proof screen, instant oil-slick and smoke screen (for pursuers), machine guns, extendable Boadicea-style tyre slashers, and a passenger-side ejector seat to get rid of unwanted guests. The then new Ford Mustang also featured in the movie. The DB5 had another outing in the 2012 Bond (Daniel Craig) movie Skyfall. Note that the "real" James Bond of Ian Fleming's books drove the firm's DB3 in the novel but bought a Bentley for himself.
A 1965 DB5, a "Bond Car" (the movie Thunderball), sold for us$6,385,000 at RM Sotheby's Monterey auction, 15-17 Feb. 2019.
A 1964 DB5 sold for €747,500 at RM Sotheby's Paris auction, 1 Feb. 2023. A 1965 DB5 sold us$1,352,500 at RM Sotheby's Amelia Island auction, 4 March 2023. A 1965 DB5, chassis #DB5/2255/R, engine #400/2212, sold for us$720,000 at RM Sothebys 'Dare to Dream' auction 1 June 2024.

1965-1970: DB6.

1969: DBS V8.

1974, December: Receivers were appointed; the company was rescued in 1975 and production resumed in 1976 [Geo00].

1977: V8 Vantage.

1978-1989: Production of the grandiose, wedge-shaped Lagonda with the 5.3-litre V8.
A 1989 Lagonda Series IV Saloon, vin SCFDL01S6KTL13615, engine #V/858/3615/LFA, sold for us$47,040 at Bonhams Scottsdale auction, 27 Jan. 2023.

1987: Ford bought 75% of Aston Martin (and eventually took control).

1990: Virage.

1993: V8 Vantage.

1994: Ford bought 100% of Aston Martin.

1994-1999: The DB7 started production with a 3228cc straight-6 super-charged engine, also shared with Jaguar, thanks to common-owner Ford.

1999: DB7 Vantage, squeezed in a 5935cc V12, 6-speed manual or 5-speed auto..

2000 October: The 6.0 litre V12 Aston Martin Vanquish was released.
Specifications: loa 4665mm, width 1923mm, height 1318mm, wheelbase 2690mm, weight 1820kg.
Engine 5935cc, 60° V12, petrol (95RON) 4-valves/cyl, cr 10.5:1,
power 336kW (450bhp) at 6500rpm, torque 556Nm at 5000rpm,
gearbox 6-speed manual/ electronic, limited slip diff' and traction control,
suspension independent by double wishbones & coil springs front & rear, fuel-tank 80L.
2001: Aston Martin Vanquish V12, ~$400,000.
2001 Vanquish V12
5.9-litre V12, 343kW (450hp), 542Nm, aluminium and carbon fibre bonded monocoque, weight 1835kg, tyres 255/40 ZR 19 (front), 285/40 ZR 19 (rear).
(2007: £182,000, 2,500+ made, end of the Vanquish's run, and closure of the Newport Pagnell production line.)

DB8, there is no Aston Martin DB8: When the DB9 was made, Aston Martin "wanted to illustrate what a massive evolution the car [was]" - AM.

2003 Frankfurt Motor Show: The first outing of the DB9, the first Aston Martin developed at the new Gaydon factory, 5.9-litre V12, 335kW, 570Nm, 1710kg, trans-axle gearbox-diff'.
2004: DB9 in production. (And as of 2010, from £122,445 DB9 Coupe, & £131,445 DB9 Volante (convertible).)

2005: V8 Vantage production.

2006: Bond, James Bond, was back in an Aston Martin – a DBS – in the movie Casino Royale. (A classic DB5 got a bit part too, ditto a Range Rover used for some very bad parking, and even a Ford Mondeo hire car!)

2007 March: Ford, having fallen on hard times, sold most of Aston Martin to a consortium of investors for £475 million.

2007: DBS in production, on sale late 2007,
loa 4721mm, wheelbase 2740mm, width 1905mm (body), height 1280mm, weight 1695kg – 1740kg (auto),
engine 60° V12, 5,935cc, c.r. 10.9:1, petrol, DOHC, 4-valves/cyl., 380kW (510bhp) @6,500rpm, 570Nm (420lb-ft) @5,750rpm,
trans-axle gearbox/diff, 6-speed manual or 6-speed ZF automatic, rear wheel drive,
191mph, 0-60mph in 4.2sec, auto fuel consumption 11.7mpg (urban), 26.8mpg (country), 18.2mpg (combined), CO2 370gm/km,
price: manual £162,500, auto £165,500 [2008].
James Bond 007 drove another DBS in the movie Quantum of Solace (2008).
2009 March 5: A 6-litre, 380kW, V12 Vantage was shown at the 78th Geneva Motor Show, for sale from the 3rd quarter of 2009 alongside the existing DBS, DB9, and V8 Vantage range. Based on the V8 Vantage, the V12 has a 6-litre V12 engine, 510bhp (380kW/517PS), 570 Nm (420-lb-ft), top speed 190mph (305km/h), and 0-62mph (0-100km/h) in 4.2 seconds. The concept was first shown at Aston Martin design in Dec 2007.
And ...
2009 March 5: Aston-Martin One-77 prototype (£1.2million) also at the Geneva Motor Show.
2009, September 17-27, Frankfurt Motor Show: The 4-seat, 4-door, Aston Martin Rapide was shown, 6-litre V12, 19mpg (355 gm CO2/km). Deliveries to customers, for £140K, from May 2010. The Rapide was built for Aston Martin by Magna Steyr in Austria from late 2009, production moving to Gaydon in mid 2012.
2011 March, Geneva: Aston Martin revived the Virage name with a DB9-based 2+2, 6-litre V12, £150K.
2012 September 18: Aston Martin announced a make-over of the DB9, from £132K, and the Virage was dropped.
2016 September 28: "Aston Martin has commenced production of the highly anticipated DB11 for UK customers ... With the first DB11 coming off the Gaydon production line today ..." — Aston Martin.
2017: A version of the DB11 with a Mercedes 4-litre twin-turbo V8, 8-speed automatic geabox, from £145K, was launched, with deliveries from November 2017.
2019 July 13: Aston Martin gave a prototype of the rear-engined Valkyie a gentle run at Silverstone over the British Grand-Prix weekend. The car has a (non-turbo) 6.5-litre 65° V12 developed by Cosworth, 1000bhp@10,500rpm, 740Nm@7000rpm, plus a 160bhp, 280Nm hybrid system. "The 150 road-going Aston Martin Valkyries are sold out [£2.5 million+], with first deliveries commencing in Q4 2019." — Aston Martin. The car will also be raced in the Hypercar class of the 2020/2021 FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC). (That was all thrown into confusion by 2020's covid-19 pandemic.)
2019 November 20: Aston Martin launched its first SUV the DBX, 3,982cc twin turbo V8, 405kW @ 6,500rpm, 9-speed auto, AWD, from £158K deliveries in 2020. The DBX is built at St Athan, Wales.
2020 July 10: The first DBX left the production line.

2020 January 31: It was announced that investors would provide £500m more to Aston Martin, including a consortium lead by Lawrence Stroll which would put in £182m. Stroll's plans included morphing the Racing Point F1 team into Aston Martin F1 – see 2021. (Stroll's son Lance drove for Racing Point.)

2020 October 27: An agreement between Aston-Martin and Mercedes gave AM access to MB's electric power technology; MB's share in AM to increase to 20%.

2021: The name Aston Martin returned to Formula One (F1) racing as a constructor: Aston Martin F1. (Hiring Fernando Alonso in 2023, AM achieved a number of podiums.)

2023 May 24: The new Aston Martin DB12 "super tourer" (does that mean GT?) featured a Mercedes 4-litre twin-turbo V8, 8-speed auto. (Also see DB11 2017 above.) Deliveries planned from "Q3 2023".

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