The Aston Martin DB12 has made its debut, introducing fresh interior enhancements and a robust exterior appearance. Aston Martin has truly nailed the essentials with the DB12. While it may appear as an evolutionary step from the DB11 on the outside, beneath its skin lies a distinctly different machine—a “Super Tourer” that marries classic elegance with cutting-edge technology.
Introducing the all-new Aston Martin DB12. It’s essential to clarify the term “new” here, as this car succeeds the closely related DB11, which first hit the scene in 2016. Given the ever-shortening lifespans of modern vehicles in the market, it was high time for a revamp. The DB12, however, has multiple roles to fulfill: maintaining the loyalty of existing Aston Martin enthusiasts, attracting fresh customers, and providing a glimpse into the brand’s future direction.
In terms of exterior design, some might consider it conservative, although it undeniably radiates beauty from every angle. The DB12 refines the lines and proportions established by the DB11 while amplifying the details. The front end sports a more profound and broader iteration of Aston’s iconic grille, akin to the one seen on the Aston Martin DBS. Additionally, there’s a subtle resemblance to the One-77 hypercar in the relationship between the vents and wheel arches, which are complemented by massive 21-inch wheels.
The headlights receive a significant upgrade with new LED units and daytime running lights, while the frameless wing mirrors have been streamlined for improved aerodynamics. Aston’s newly designed wings badge, a collaboration with Peter Saville, adorns the elongated hood, and the DB12 is also slightly wider than its predecessor, the DB11.
Ultimately, the DB12 embodies continuity, preserving the sense of grandeur, impeccable proportions, and sheer dynamism that have been the hallmarks of the ‘DB’ cars throughout their 75-year history. There’s a subtle repositioning as well; it’s no longer classified as a Grand Tourer but now bears the title of ‘Super Tourer,’ a distinction Aston Martin hopes will set it apart from competitors.
The emphasis on comfort, convenience, and luxury is most evident within the DB12’s redesigned interior, which underwent a much-needed overhaul. It’s safe to say that the DB11’s weak point was its dashboard layout and outdated tech. Despite Aston Martin’s renowned craftsmanship and material quality, the DB11 suffered from ergonomic awkwardness and an outdated feel.
The DB12 rectifies these issues. “The interior has undergone a complete redesign,” says Aston Martin’s Executive Vice President and Chief Creative Officer, Marek Reichman. “Clean horizontal lines create a sense of space and provide a contemporary backdrop for our state-of-the-art infotainment system.”
Gone is the high central ‘waterfall’ dashboard that has been a DB series hallmark since the original DB9. In its place, you’ll find a more linear, low-set fascia adorned with an array of functional buttons and dials, a distinctive gear selector (no longer operated by buttons), and a seamlessly integrated touchscreen for audio and navigation. The new interior employs materials more sparingly, with clear distinctions between the upper and lower fascia. Leather is used generously and meticulously hand-stitched, featuring a unique quilting pattern.
The DB12 incorporates physical dials for volume, temperature, and fan speed control, a significant improvement. It also fully supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and Aston Martin has partnered with Bowers & Wilkins for audio. The Human-Machine Interface (HMI) marks Aston’s first bespoke system, supporting satellite and 3D mapping, over-the-air updates via an on-board e-SIM, and a companion Aston Martin App.
Dynamically, the DB12 boasts impressive credentials. The 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 (as the V12 option is no longer available) now produces 680PS, delivering a 0-60mph sprint of just 3.5 seconds and a top speed of 202mph. The suspension system is entirely new, featuring adaptive dampers that provide a wide range of capabilities, from a dynamic sports car to a comfortable long-distance cruiser.
Aston Martin DB12, available from Q3 2023, price tbc, AstonMartin.com