We all know by now that 2023 is primed to be a huge year for Aston Martin, with the DBS finally shuffling off and the Vantage getting its long-anticipated update. The DB12 is the first big one, though, the replacement for the DB11 functioning as the tip of the spear for what is set to be a period of unprecedented activity, with Lawrence Stroll suggesting just last week that the firm will launch eight new sports cars in the next 24 months. Reveal of the DB12 - if indeed that is what it will be called - is now confirmed for official unveiling next Wednesday.
The teaser images suggest it is worth getting excited about. As do Aston’s accompanying comments on the matter: ‘This highly anticipated sports car will break free from the norms of the GT sector, creating a new category of one celebrating 75 years of Aston Martin’s iconic DB bloodline of exceptional hand-built British sports cars.’ Even allowing for the usual PR bluster, this suggests a bullish internal confidence about what has been achieved.
While the shadowy preview pictures suggest a familiar shape (and proportions) for Aston’s flagship sports car, the interior shot of the centre console point to a wholesale rethink - a development that will likely be welcomed by customers given the DB11’s widely accepted shortcomings in the department. Most notably there is a touchscreen now located in the upper portion of the new console, and evidently the gear selector has finally been relocated from the push-button format previously used on the dashboard.
Furthermore, it appears the Mercedes-donated (and hugely outdated) infotainment controller has bitten the dust - inevitable really, assuming Aston has moved to more up-to-date user interface and touchscreens throughout the cabin - yet it has apparently retained proper physical switchgear for, among other things, the climate control. This bodes well not just for the DB12, but also for the rest of the lineup still to be unfurled behind it.
Certainly, the press release suggests high performance and ultra luxury will be ‘spearheading’ the new models. It continues: “A generation that will see all Aston Martin models characterised by prodigious performance and pinpoint driving dynamics, seamless integration of advanced technologies and the sublime style and impeccable craftsmanship for which the brand has long been renowned.”
In previous years - the latest Vantage and DBX included - Aston has hit some of these targets, but manifestly not all of them. If the manufacturer has indeed made a better fist of providing its new generation of sports cars with improved technology, and successfully incorporated them into more stylish surroundings, then it might have finally given its rivals (Bentley and Porsche chief among them) something to think about in the run-up to electrification. But that’s all to come. For now, the DB11’s successor is the car of the moment. Bring on a new era.
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