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Aston Martin DB9

(2003 - )  Rating

Aston Martin DB9

The Aston Martin DB9 is the best Aston Martin ever built

Engine Engine power Fuel consumption Fuel type 0-100 (0-60) Top speed
5.9 V12 48V 450 hp 18 l/100km Petrol 5.1 s 300 km/h

Body type Coupe
Number of doors 2
Number of seats 4
Engine position Front
Driven wheels Rear
Length 4 697 mm
Width 1 875 mm
Height 1 318 mm
Wheelbase 2 740 mm
Ground clearance 120 mm
Weight (normal) 1 710 kg
Weight (max) ?
Boot space (min) 172 l
Boot space (max) 172 l
Fuel capacity 85 l


   The Aston Martin DB9 is a grand tourer, produced since 2003. It is available as a coupe, or Volante convertible.

   It's V12 develops 450 hp, but it's the almost diesel-like pull from low revs that impresses most. This engine is similar to that of the Aston Martin Vanquish. The DB9 is now available with either a manual gearbox or a six-speed auto that also functions as a paddle-shift manual. This is not a success – it's acceptable in auto mode at medium speeds, but press on harder and it changes gear too slowly.

   The steering is too heavy and shudders as you go from lock to lock. The DB9 is at its best on flat, smooth roads, where it is composed and grippy. It becomes unruly on anything bumpier, and the traction control is called into use too easily. The ride is on the sharp side of firm, even on the motorway.

   The Aston's 12-cylinder engine sounds fabulous, without being in your face on a motorway journey, and the V12 and automatic gearbox are smooth. However, there is far too much wind and road noise at speed.

   The UK will get about a third of the 2200 DB9s to be made each year. That will ensure exclusivity and help to hold up resale values, but should keep waiting lists reasonably short. Naturally, the Aston will be costly to run, but buyers expect that. What might irritate is the short range of the 85-litre tank.

   The Aston V12 engine has proven itself and the automatic gearbox should also be reliable. The cabin looks great, but some of the materials used are not all they could be, and the fit and finish is a disappointment.

   Volvo helped Aston develop the DB9, which has full electronic traction and braking aids and airbags, save for side curtains. It also has a multi-stage deformable front crash structure to cut down on repair bills in a minor shunt and protect in a major one. A Tracker system is fitted to help police find the DB9 if its defenses are overcome.

   The dash is made of matt wood and aluminum, and the rest of the cabin is leather and carpet. The seats are fully adjustable and superbly supportive. The view out is good for a car of this type. The biggest downside is that the minor switches on the dash are too small and are not easy to read.

   The DB9 makes a better sports car or tourer for two than a two-plus-two. With a couple of tallish adults up-front there's negligible knee space behind, and the roofline restricts headroom aft. Unfortunately, those tiny rear seats can't be folded to supplement what is a fairly small boot.

   Paying a high price, you expect a high level of equipment and you also want to be able to personalize the car. Aston Martin knows about these things, having been in the luxury car trade for decades, and has fitted the DB9 out accordingly. What that means, though, is that it isn't as fully equipped as some cars which cost just two-thirds of its price.

   Production of the Aston Martin DB9 still continues.


   Advantages: Musical, flexible V12 engine; clever six-speed paddle-shift automatic gearbox; brilliantly sorted chassis; gorgeous interior.

   Disadvantages: Not enough room for two in the back, and rear seats don't fold to supplement slender luggage area; fuel range not big enough.

   Verdict: Bond's back in an Aston.

   Also consider: Maserati Coupe, Porsche 911.

Video of the Aston Martin DB9
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Aston Martin DB9

Aston Martin DB9

Aston Martin DB9

Aston Martin DB9

Aston Martin DB9

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