Aston Martin rediscovers the X factor
The at-times eccentric British sportscar marque is making a huge statement of future intent with its new DBX concept, which it unveiled to the press at the Geneva Motor Show on Tuesday.Updated: Mar 05, 2015 12:04 IST
The at-times eccentric British sportscar marque is making a huge statement of future intent with its new DBX concept, which it unveiled to the press at the Geneva Motor Show on Tuesday.
The first car ever to come out of the company's facilities to boast all-wheel drive and electric power, Aston Martin claims that the car is intended to redefine the concept of the luxury GT car.
Unveiling the concept at the Geneva Motor Show, Aston Martin CEO Dr Andy Palmer said: "The DBX Concept is a challenge to the existing status quo in the high luxury GT segment. It envisages a world, perhaps a world not too far away, when luxury GT travel is not only stylish and luxurious but also more practical, more family-friendly and more environmentally responsible."
This is a huge change of direction from the company who until today favored 6-liter, 12 cylinder engines for powering its sportscars, supercars and luxury GTs. But, as well as a nod to more sustainable personal mobility, the new concept also recognizes the importance of the styling and practicality that a crossover provides.
With the notable exceptions of Ferrari and McLaren (pure racing car brands), all of Aston Martin's other serious competitors -- from BMW to Bentley and from Porsche to Lamborghini -- have or are developing larger SUV-inspired cars. The DBX offers the same elevated driving position, large wheels, ground clearance and bulging wheel arches and increased luggage space, but is still unmistakably an Aston Martin coupe.
"The DBX Concept is more than a thought starter for us and for our customers, though. We will, in due course, be entering a car into the new DBX space....," said Dr. Palmer.
Since gaining its independence from Ford, Aston Martin has struggled to compete with its closest rivals on any level other than attention to detail, exterior design and craftsmanship. Its once glorious engines are now showing their age against the latest turbocharged V8s being used by McLaren, Ferrari and Mercedes-Benz, and some of the company's in-car technology and active driver aids pre-date the iPhone.
However, thanks to a recent partnership with Mercedes-Benz, the company will now have access to cutting-edge V8 engines and a host of other toys. The unveiling of the DBX shows that the deal is already helping the company to start thinking outside the box again.
As Dr Palmer explains: "I asked my team at Aston Martin to expand their thinking beyond conventions, to explore what the future of luxury GT motoring would look like in years ahead, and the DBX Concept you see before you is the result."
First Published: Mar 04, 2015 13:17 IST