DB11: The Future of Aston Martin

Sam Kessler (Online Editor)
After plenty of speculation and anticipation, is the Aston Martin DB11 everything we hoped for?

It’s finally here: the first Aston Martin DB in over a decade. Oh there was the DB10 for Spectre of course, but the custom-built set vehicles weren’t exactly production cars. Granted though, that was the first time we got a glimpse of the quintessential British marque’s plan for the future.

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It signalled a change in the direction of Aston Martin, moving from the more traditionally restrained style they’ve always been associated to something a bit more… vicious. It’s lower, predatory appearance could have simply been for the film, except that it was followed at lightning speed by the track-only Vulcan.

Yet despite two glimpses at their so-called ‘second century plan,’ we were still waiting for exactly what that would bring. Considering it would signal the future direction of one of the world’s most renowned marques, there was a lot riding on it. Well, yesterday at the Geneva Auto Show, we found out that the DB11 was well worth the wait.

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The DB10 laid down the tenets for what is set to become Aston Martin’s new design language, an evolution you can clearly see in the DB11. The same low, sleek silhouette as the Bond car gives it the feel of a hunter, a style enhanced by the larger, more imposing grille. Indeed, Aston’s iconic grille has become a formative feature with the lines of the car flowing backwards from it.

Those lines themselves have been made all the more distinctive by a clamshell bonnet, which gives the whole front end of the car a more structural feel. The single piece of aluminium helps keep the DB11’s curves uninterrupted as they flow in an unbroken arc from A-pillar to C-pillar. Revitalising Aston Martin’s previous charming shape, the model’s more fluid curves create the feel of a hunter waiting to pounce – all the more so with  eyes of bright LED headlights.

There’s more than stunning modern style to the car’s new figure though. The DB11’s aerodynamics are a vast step forwards from previous Astons, with the clean, uninterrupted lines enhanced with a re-imagined side strake. Always a key element of Aston Martin design, here they’ve actually been made a practical addition by reducing lift from the front wheel arch. Thanks to the Aston Martin AeroBlade, an innovative airflow system, the DB11 is able to produce the downforce of a spoiler without having to, ahem, spoil their iconic sloping tail.

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The interior maintains the exacting level of craftsmanship that Aston Martin lovers have come to appreciate though, like the outside, in a far more contemporary fashion. Lauding the quality of the materials involved is pointless; this is an Aston. You know what to expect. Yet the way they’ve been used is far more inventive.

Wooden trims are left un-glossed for a more authentic, natural feel while quilting, perforation and brogueing all have their own places across the sumptuous leather of seats and dashboard both. The various techniques and finished flow across a dashboard as unceasingly flowing as the exterior, interrupted only by the more technical look of the instrument panel.

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The instruments themselves have undergone an overhaul; using a full-colour 12” TFT LCD display, the all-new instrument cluster presents primary vehicle information with absolute clarity, while a second, centrally-mounted 8” TFT screen is dedicated to infotainment. Auto-assist parking and a 360 degree camera complete the suite of tech and help make sure the DB11 stays looking the part regardless of tricky parking spaces.

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The changes are even more marked on the technical side of things. A 5.2-litre twin-turbocharged V12 makes the DB11 the fastest production model to ever bear those iconic letters which, along with the aforementioned aerodynamic nuances, helps the supercar hit the almighty 200mph. It’s a top speed the DB11 can reach surprisingly quickly as well, with a 0-62mph time of just 3.9sec.

That additional stable of horsepower requires a little more refinement to be put to work fully. The DB11’s chassis, suspension, steering and electronics have all been re-imagined, with multiple driver-selectable dynamic modes, while adaptive damping creates a more agile, responsive driving experience.

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A grand tourer on the inside, sports car on the out and a supercar beneath the bonnet, the DB11 signifies the next stage in the life of one of Britain’s most phenomenal marques. When Aston Martin themselves call their newest release “the most powerful, efficient and dynamically gifted DB model,” it’s a bold statement. One look at the DB11 says it’s also very true.

The Aston Martin DB11 will be priced from from £154,900. To make an enquiry, CLICK HERE.

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