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Geneva Motor Show 2016: Aston Martin DB11 {{favouriteCount}} Quantity of Likes

1 Mar 2016

Aston Martin revealed the all-new DB11 at the Geneva Motor Show yesterday, with many claiming it is easily the star of the show. Every part of the DB11 is new, from the structure to the styling, including the engine and technology, making it a landmark car in Aston’s history. It certainly needs to be broken down into sections…

Engine

The engine is probably on an equal footing with the styling as the most important aspects of any Aston, so for the new car they needed something to truly shock the world – and boy did they deliver. The new powerplant is a 5.2 litre twin turbo V12, producing a staggering 600bhp and 516lb/ft of torque – making it the most powerful DB road car ever. This means that 0-62mph takes just 3.9 seconds and it will power its way on to 200mph. Development started on this new engine before the new tie-up with AMG, so it is a ‘proper’ Aston engine, many thought it would be a reworked AMG lump but this is a downsized all-Aston engine – the AMG twin turbo V8 powered lower model will come later. The twin turbo V12 sends all that power through a ZF 8-Speed automatic gearbox as used on the Vanquish to the rear wheels with a mechanical limited slip differential featuring torque vectoring for the first time.

Styling & Aerodynamics

Now styling is obviously subjective, but to us the DB11 looks absolutely sensational. Taking the well-known look of an Aston GT, they have managed to bring it bang up to date with a modern theme seen on the James Bond DB10. At the front the familiar grille is bigger, curved around and canted forwards slightly, while there is now one big intake at the bottom sitting atop the splitter. There are all-LED headlights as standard, while the bonnet has a strongly creased centre bulge that runs from the grille edge. There are also vents on the bonnet in the centre and at the outsides, including aerodynamic blades. Behind the front wheels are a new take on the traditional Aston side strake, this time they sit with an open edge to the wheelarch, which allows air pressure to escape through what Aston calls its new ‘Curlicue’ vent.

The roofline is very sleek, tapering down to the rear, but this is where the most impressive aerodynamic development is. The C-Pillar sits proud of the side windows and directs airflow from over the car into a new ‘Aeroblade’ which takes the air into the rear bodywork and exits on the rear deck where a normal spoiler would sit. This keeps the lines clean and doesn’t need any extra spoilers – though there is a small inch high gurney flap that rises up at high speed. The rear end is the biggest departure from previous Aston styling, with a wide sharp bootlid with wraparound LED rear lights, while a ducted diffuser houses the exhaust pipes.

 

Structure

The DB11 uses an all new development of their bonded aluminium chassis and body structure, which uses large bonded aluminium pressings bonded together to give incredible stiffness versus the weight. The DB11 is longer, wider and lower than the DB9 and the wheelbase has been increased by 65mm – this means the engine can be mounted further back for better weight distribution and the cabin – specifically for rear passengers – has more room too. The clamshell bonnet is the largest single aluminium pressing in the world.

Interior & Tech

One of the main areas that have attracted criticism for Aston recently is that their interiors and technology were falling far behind the competition. Well thanks to their new tie-up with ‘technological partner’ Daimler-Benz, the DB11 managed to leapfrog the competition to be the most technologically advanced GT on sale today. The interior is still recognisably Aston Martin, with a centre console that flows down the dashboard, but there is now a large 8” screen atop the console and the main dials are now formed from one 12” screen. There is a fully integrated infotainment system taken from the high end Mercedes models, including a navigation wheel and virtual mouse system. The tech ranges from keyless entry, to adaptive suspension, surround cameras, self-parking, adaptive cruise control and a high end stereo system.

Overall this new DB11 has to be the most impressive (and important) Aston Martin in a long time. We have to wonder what the fate of the Vanquish will be though, as we can’t see anyone opting to buy a slower, less powerful and technologically less advanced car for more money.

Starting at £154,900 the DB11 is on sale now.

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