The company’s entry to the SUV segment from late 2019 is expected to be a much-needed shot in the arm.
The car will be pit against the likes of Bentley’s Bentayga, Lamborghini’s Urus, Maserati’s Levante, and others in the luxury 4x4 segment. CEO Andy Palmer says the DBX will stand apart from them “because it has not sacrificed any beauty to achieve its practicality or performance”.
The DBX concept was revealed at Geneva in 2015 as a two-door, four-seat model powered by electric motors mounted inboard of the wheels and powered by lithium-sulphur cells. The concept had an F1-style kinetic energy recovery system (KERS).
Palmer stated that the design has now been signed off and the company has begun pre-production of test cars. He added, “There are aspects of the car that have changed dramatically — perhaps none more so than the fact that it is now a four-door — and, on a comparison basis, you will be able to pick out many details that have been modified. But in terms of the pure lines and the fundamental core principles of the car, you’ll recognise them.”
The car will be powered by Aston’s 5.2-litre V12, retuned to make 608hp and 700Nm. The car will also feature an AMG-sourced 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 that makes 510hp and 675Nm.
The interior of the DBX will focus on practicality as well. “There are certain issues you can’t compromise on that perhaps we haven’t given such credence to in the past — ingress and egress, for starters, and whether it is a car you sit on or sit in,” said Palmer. “DBX is a revolution for Aston Martin in so many ways, and that has meant that we have had to adapt our way of thinking in places.”
“We have one rule that never changes, which is that we don’t trade off beauty. But if you want the design to reflect its 4x4-ness and to deliver the sort of utility that customers expect from these cars, then you have find ways to achieve that. A 4x4 needs to be big, it needs to convey safety and security and yet it also needs to be easy to get in and out of.”
Preparation to start making the DBX at Aston’s new facility at St Athan in Wales have begun.