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Aston Martin DBS Carbon Edition

The latest set of wheels are taken for a spin. This edition: Aston Martin DBS Carbon Edition.

•Aston Martin DBS Carbon Edition, £186,582 •Engine: 6.0-litre petrol producing 510bhp and 420lb.ft of torque •Transmission: Six-speed automatic driving the rear wheels •Performance: Top speed 191mph, 0-62mph in 4.3 seconds •Economy: 17.3mpg combined •Emissions: 388g/km of CO2

Paying homage to the past without being enslaved by it is no easy task. All car manufacturers face this particular problem with their latest products, needing to balance progress of the brand but without jumping too far ahead and leaving behind customers who love the current cars.

It’s an even bigger problem for someone like Aston Martin, a firm steeped in history and with a brand image that is intimately tied to past products; the classic DB5/6 is one of the most famous cars in the world thanks to its association with a certain secret agent. But how does that help you sell a new car?

Spend a few minutes drinking in the details of this DBS Carbon Edition and you can’t help thinking that Aston Martin has got it absolutely spot on. It starts with the grille and its distinctive shape that echoes those classic ‘50s and ‘60s icons. But sandwiching that is a carbonfibre splitter and LED headlights, details that have 21st Century written all over them. This Carbon Edition also adds the choice of diamond-turned alloy wheels with two possible finishes, carbonfibre door mirrors and rear light surrounds. There are two unique colours to this model too - a Ceramic Grey or the pictured Flame Orange, all of which go through a 25-hour hand finishing proves. The DBS usually wears more sober shades but this is the ultimate DB9 after all, and the vibrant paint draws out the sensuous curves.

Climbing inside always brings with it a sense of occasion. The flip-up door handles are a triumph of style over function; yes they are a little more awkward to use than a normal handle but it is so worth it for the looks. Pop the handle and the doors swing out and up, easing your entry but also looking very slick. In the cabin the DBS Carbon Edition unsurprisingly adds yet more carbonfibre - this time laid over the top of the dashboard while the lower half is finished in piano black. The roof lining is also finished in quilted leather, meaning every surface is a visual and tactile treat. On a more practical level the DBS also now receives the upgraded Garmin sat-nav system which is a big improvement on the old set up which was getting on a little.

42 Life Begins

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