New Aston Martin DBX Launched
In true Aston Martin style, it has come fashionably late to the SUV party. But…wow, we are glad it has finally arrived.
In a room of overweight, unattractive SUV’s simply cheaper brethren in a frock, the specially designed DBX is not based on the existing platform of a mainstream or budget brand, but designed from the ground up to ensure minimal compromise in building a performance SUV.
What Aston Martin has done is use its experience in building some of the most beautiful sports and supercars in the world and apply that technology, such as a bonded aluminium chassis, when building its new DBX.
What the new DBX will do for Aston Martin, like performance SUV’s have done for every high end brand, is broaden its market appeal and most likely massively boost its sales.
The DBX is not just a cynical attempt to capitalise on a market with a cookie cutter solution (we cannot forget the flop that was the Aston Martin Cygnet and clearly they learned a lot from that debacle). This is pure Aston Martin, well as pure Aston Martin as it can get, bearing in mind the AMG V8 sourced power plant and Mercedes infotainment system.
So why is Aston Martins new DBX so special?
Well to start with, the DBX, whilst being an SUV, is not as ungainly as the likes of the Cayenne or Bentayga, being 20mm and 70mm lower respectively. That lower centre of gravity will present a reduced compromise in on road handling so it feels less like an oil tanker going round corners at high speed and more like its sportscar stablemates. However, it still does not compromise on the spacial benefits of an SUV as whilst it sits comfortably in between the overall lengths of the spacious Bentayga and more cramped Cayenne, at 5.04m, its longer wheelbase than both vehicles means it is far from cramped.
Propelling this 5.04m SUV is the AMG sourced, but heavily upgraded, turbocharged 4.0l V8 which produces a healthy 542bhp, and 516ft/lb of torque across a broad power band, which means it will propel you from 0-60mph in a blistering 4.3 seconds, and on to 181mph, whilst taking advantage of cylinder cut off technology enabling equally impressive fuel economy of 17.9mph combined.
This impressive power is translated to the road via a smart all-wheel-drive with an electronically controlled centre and rear differential. For regular use, the DBX sends all its power to the rear wheels maintaining that sportscar feel and handling stability, but when needed nearly 50% of that torque can be diverted to the front wheels.
With a total of 6 driving settings for the DBX (4 on road and 2 off road) the independent air suspension has a broad range lowering the vehicle by 50mm, or raising it by 45mm, in ride height from its normal setting.
So, the new Aston Martin DBX has the performance licked, presents a capable off road platform whilst seemingly being able to have little compromise in on road handling, but does it look good, or is it an attempt to make a silk purse out of a sows ear?
Not being a huge fan of performance SUV’s, we were certainly sceptical as to whether Aston Martin could pull this off, but in honestly we are impressed. Granted you can not just put a standard car body onto an off road chassis (a la Top Gear, with their comedy Mercedes SL 4×4) so we could not expect it to look like their latest DB11 or Vantage, but we will grant them this, they have done a pretty good job.
The slightly softer front end clearly demonstrates the fact that Aston Martin has been listening to and is canvassing its female audience, but it has also listened to its overall customer base and, thankfully, retained that iconic ‘DB’ grille rather than adopting the big fish-mouth from the Vantage. The DBX has also kept the side strakes which were also conspicuously absent from the Vantage (another good move in our opinion), however the rest of the vehicles side is somewhat more generic.
Moving to the rear of the vehicle it has very clearly adopted the same design as the Vantage and this is a good thing which makes it undeniably Aston Martin and ensures it sticks out in a crowd of bland generic performance SUV’s, but the rear does also look a little bulbous on the lower half.
The DBX sits on massive 22″ alloy wheels which nicely fill the arches and overall in side profile, arguably the best view of the DBX, it looks as good as an SUV can look.
With leather as far as the eye can see, the cabin simply oozes luxury and you know you are at home in an Aston Martin, it could not be anything else. There are no cheap blatant tell-tales of an Audi like there are in the Bentayga. This is all Aston Martin (*cough* except the infotainment system from Mercedes).
The DBX is also a 5-Seater, so will accommodate most families and will be a useful vehicle for its inevitable use on the school run. Will you fit 3 fully grown adults comfortably across the rear bench seat? Of course not! That is what a Range Rover is for. Will you fit 3 child seats across the back? Highly unlikely, go and get a Discovery. This is a performance SUV, there will always be compromises, but to be honest we doubt this will turn any of its target market off.
What about the inside? Well Aston Martin already had this in the bag. Well reputed for their luxurious interiors, in the DBX Aston Martin have not failed to impress! Long term Aston Martin fans will be pleased the Ski-Ramp design is back to a certain extent, doing a better job than in the DB11, by enveloping the Mercedes infotainment hardware rather than having that ‘stuck-on’ look of the display that offends the eyes in the DB11. Hopefully they will adopt this design moving forwards.
How much does the new Aston Martin DBX cost?
Well… You won’t be getting much change out of £160,000 and there are enough options available to help you spend that change and on to around £200,000!
Specifications wise, you really needn’t ask. It’s an Aston Martin, this is a luxury Super SUV with just about everything you could possibly dream of and rightfully expect as standard.
Interior options wise, there is not much more to add as its already there. Essentially you are looking at things like upgraded, coloured and extended leather, design options such as contrast stitching, climate seats front & rear, heated steering wheel, and wood trim options.
Exterior options are again fairly limited, only due to the fact it is so well appointed, to styling preferences and Privacy Glass.
Functional options are again fairly limited as most technology is standard save for Park Assist, Gesture Control Tailgate, Tow Bar (yes a tow bar on an Aston Martin…whatever next), Garage Door Opener, and touchpad controller.
There are 11 ‘packages’ available the most noteworthy/amusing being their Pet Package which includes a portable pet washer.
So… what do we think of the new Aston Martin DBX?
We have to admit is is quite probably the least compromised performance SUV on the market. It is elegant but not too soft looking, it is undeniably Aston Martin, it appears that it can certainly handle on road and should be able to cope with all of the likely off road usage 99.9% of its drivers will ever throw at it. We are struggling to see where there is any significant compromise, its a beautiful, high performance, high quality practical, and usable Super SUV that is unique and outstanding!
In a cookie cutter market-place, where many brands have just put a frock on a lesser brand cousin in a cynical attempt to cash in on a segment, Aston Martin have come up with something special in their DBX.
If you would like to find out more about the Aston Martin DBX and arranging finance, please get in touch with us to discuss your requirements.
Facts & Figures:
Engine: 4.0l Turbo-charged V8
Power: 542BHP @ 6,000rpm
Torque: 516ft/lb between 2,200 and 5,000rpm
0-60mph: 4.3 seconds
Top Speed: 181mph
Fuel Economy: 19.7mpg (WLTP Combined)
Width: 2.22m (inc Door Mirrors)
Kerb Weight 2,245kg