Aston Martin DBS : too wide
I was recently reading an article comparing DB5 and DBS in Classic
& Sportscar (French ed.). They told that the DBS was a nice buy
when compared to the DB5 : 5 times cheaper... Nevertheless, DBS don't
come cheap anymore !
And to be true, I find the DBS a bit oversized...
(source Classic &
Maybe, it's because its bonnet (or hood for you US readers)
is really flat but also because it
shouldn't have been that really wide...
Now, look at what is below :
"In my opinion it was too big and
bulky, although it is a little-known fact that it was three inches
wider than we had planned. This is because a mistake was made with the
jigs, and when we discovered there was a three-inch difference from the
drawings it was too late to change it, because we were under pressure
from dealers to bring the car out. So it was built with a width of six
feet, which means that the current Aston Martin V8, which is based on
the DBS, is also three inches too wide !"
Those can be read in The Power
Behind Aston Martin (code PBAM) and confirmed in Aston Martin V8 (code V8F).
They weren't told on April Fool's day and no less than Sir David BROWN
spoke there !
That's quite incredible and imagine 1970s Americans who would have been
even more confused with the V8 models.
Indeed should these cars have been narrower, some people in America
would have even more problems to see the differences between the V8s
and Ford Mustangs !
Much more seriously, one can remember of the DBS prototype by Touring
(latter dubbed DBS-C to avoid confusion with the DBS). It was 3 inches
wider than the DB6 and 3 inches narrower than the DBS. If you still
follow me, this means the DBS-C has the exact width which should have
the DBS width if the "mistake"
(as said by Sir David BROWN) had not been
266/1/R one of the two DBS-C ever
(source Automobile Quarterly vol. 21 no 4)
Finally, you could argue that extra width was a good thing to put a V8
instead of a 6 cylinder but you may remember that the first tests were
made using a DB4 and a DB5 as can be seen below with MP213 (V8
prototype) installed in MP219/1 (a DB4 with IRS).
Some readers made comments, especially on the AMOC
forum, (and I uppermost thank them for this) to tell me that maybe Sir
David BROWN was joking as was usual for him.
Also, it seems odd that the jigs could not be changed as this is an
easy task for engineers. Maybe, this was a later change of mind from
Furthermore even if new components and new engine fit in the DB4 to 6
'narrow' body, this gave a bad turning circle, it seems. Hence a wider
Lastly, it is known that William TOWNS was designing both a 2 door GT
(to become the DBS) and a sedan, which was finally dropped.
Nevertheless, they were to have the same width.
Also, Andrew WHITE (in source VOL1) explains that TOWNS liked to create
a 'long' car then create out of this one a GT (like the DB4GT was
created out of the DB4).
Aston Martin Scrapbook