Published on October 7th, 2020 | by Joshua Chin0
Aston Martin DBX Launched Locally, From RM 818k Pre-Tax
Orders for 11 of these Aston Martin super SUVs have already been placed, with hopefully more to come.
An Aston Martin has always been regarded as the gentleman’s GT. Always sleek, svelte and über cool. Gentleman however, do eventually start families of their own. With the wife and kids in tow, the low-slung grand tourer doesn’t really cut it as a family car. Enter then the latest Aston Martin DBX super SUV, an Aston Martin with enough utility for all the family.
Recently launched in Malaysia, the Aston Martin DBX continues the market trend that currently demands for SUVs of all kinds. Seeing how the introduction of an SUV in its lineup has greatly padded to the bottom lines of Porsche, Bentley, Maserati, Lamborghini, Rolls Royce and so many other premium marques, it is also a financially prudent move for Aston Martin, a historically financially unstable boutique supercar manufacturer, to take.
Developed from a blank slate and sitting on a bespoke aluminium SUV platform, the DBX is poised to attract buyers who want to be Bond, but has a couple of little Bonds in tow too. In terms of design, this SUV continues the sleekness and svelteness that is the hallmark of this iconic British marque. No surprise as both the front and rear ends were plucked from the current Aston lineup. The front appears nearly identical to the DB11, which incidentally includes the elegant clamshell bonnet, while the rear design is a copy of the Vantage.
That said, the side profile has not been seen on any Aston as yet. On the flip side though, it does bear some resemblance to another sleek SUV on the market, the Infiniti FX37. Continuing on the side profile, one will notice that the DBX isn’t a particularly big car. It may look to be the size of a Bentayga from the pictures, but it is more the size of an Urus in the metal. A handy comparison for those who are actually cross-shopping these super SUVs.
Since a sleeker, smaller SUV that most on the current market, it stands to reason the driving position of the Aston Martin is more of a car-like than in say a Cullinan. For those who want a proper king of the road feel, a full-fat Range Rover might be a better option. Though it has to be noted that the Aston does completely mullers its other British opposition when it comes to performance.
Being a sports car manufacturer after all, the DBX still contains all the typical performance car tag lines. The same AMG-derived 4.0 litre twin-turbocharged V8 as in the DB11 and Vantage could be found under the hood of the DBX. This time outputting 550 PS and 700 Nm of torque through a 9-speed automatic transmission, that sends power to all four wheels. Thus translating to the fact that this 2,245 kg behemoth can sprint to 100 km/h from a standstill in just 4.5 seconds, and on to a top speed of 291 km/h.
On the handling front meanwhile, 50:50 weight distribution is helped by adaptive triple volume air suspension, in addition to the latest 48v electric anti-roll control system (eARC) and electronic adaptive dampers. Hopefully providing sports car-like handling while supposedly maintaining grand tourer ride quality. Moreover, with this suspension setup and trick differentials, the DBX could foreseeably go off-road too. For those who want/dare to take their million ringgit SUV off-road that is.
Moving on to the interior, it is undeniably a luxurious place to be. The sumptuous leather in particular is a stand out feature in the cabin, and so is the full length panoramic glass roof. Unlike Astons of old too, technology is also not a shortage on the DBX. The 10.25 inch central infotainment display with integrated Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, in addition to the 12.3 inch digital gauge cluster, is just the tip of the technological iceberg in the DBX. Furthermore, safety features are on par with all the other luxury SUVs in the segment too, with all the usual active driver aids coming standard with this Aston Martin.
On the practicality side too, despite its smaller-than-percieved size, Aston Martin still claims that the DBX has ‘class-leading interior space’, seating 5 adults in relative comfort. The 632 litre boot space is also touted to be equally cavernous, though the sloping roof line and low boot opening angle does rob some of its utility.
Prices for this Welsh-built Aston Martin SUV begins at RM 818,000 before the inevitable duties, taxes, registration and of course, personalisation. Viewings and bookings are now available to be made at Aston Martin Kuala Lumpur. Seeing as there are already 11 others in the queue already though, one should better act sooner rather than later to blag one of the hottest new super SUVs in town.
PRESS RELEASE: Aston Martin Kuala Lumpur has officially introduced the highly anticipated DBX, the marque’s first SUV, to the Malaysian market. The DBX is a true game-changer, presenting a new kind of Aston Martin that is founded on the principles of beauty, luxury and driving dynamics. Built on brand new architecture and powered by the spirit of adventure, the DBX is ready to go anywhere.
“Aston Martin has boldly ventured into uncharted territory with the addition of an SUV that has all the brand’s trademark luxuries combined with dynamic sports car capabilities. The DBX’s striking design echoes the unmistakable style of Aston Martin’s iconic sports cars and is matched by its impressive versatility in performance. It has already sparked great interest worldwide and we’re thrilled to now offer this dynamic model in Malaysia,” said Mr. Kumara Sooriar Sivanasan, General Manager of Aston Martin Kuala Lumpur.
The culmination of an extensive development programme that began with physical testing in Wales in 2018 and virtual development stretching back to 2015, the DBX signals a new era in Aston Martin’s pursuit to deliver exceptional performance, style and usability in a segment previously unexplored by the world-famous manufacturer. Bringing both the versatility and indulgence expected of a luxury SUV with sports car levels of dynamic performance, DBX sets a bold new standard in this sector.
The foundation of the DBX is a new dedicated SUV platform, something rarely seen across the sector, which inspires all departments within Aston Martin to innovate and push the boundaries of what British design and engineering can create, resulting in a truly remarkable product.
Utilising bonded aluminium, a construction method Aston Martin has refined through the development of its sports cars, the body structure is both very light and incredibly stiff, assisting in the delivery of an overall kerbweight of 2,245kg. Right from its genesis, it was designed to allow maximum room in the cabin, putting a premium on refinement and class leading spaciousness for both front and rear occupants. Meanwhile, the exceptional stiffness inherent in the design of the new platform has also enabled DBX to achieve exceptional dynamics both on and off-road.
Adaptive triple volume air suspension has been combined with the latest 48v electric anti- roll control system (eARC) and electronic adaptive dampers to provide the new SUV with a huge breadth of ability. With its capacity to raise the ride height by 45mm or lower it by 50mm the air suspension gives any driver the confidence to tackle a wide range of terrain. While this of course provides benefits while on the move, the system can be further programmed to aid with ingress, egress and loading requirements, aiding on a practical level.
The adaptive triple chamber air springs enable variable spring stiffness, giving both luxurious comfort and dynamic prowess. Extraordinarily the eARC – capable of 1,400Nm of anti-roll force per axle – can limit DBX’s body roll for handling that is much more akin to that of a sports car than an SUV. This sophisticated system of adaptive air suspension, dampers and eARC allows for maximum ride comfort when transporting up to five occupants and their luggage, while maintaining a highly responsive and engaging dynamic capability.
Powered by a new version of the characterful 4-litre, twin-turbocharged V8 engine found in DB11 and Vantage, DBX features an impressive output of 550PS and 700NM of torque, carefully tuned to meet the specific needs of this model. With a sound character that is unquestionably Aston Martin, the active exhaust system ensures this is a luxury SUV that can sound refined one moment and exhilarating the next. The engine’s versatility isn’t restricted to its vocals either; the turbocharged V8 has cylinder deactivation to enhance fuel economy, yet it can also propel DBX from 0 to 100km/h in 4.5 seconds and on to a top speed of 291km/h.
Transmitting this power and torque to the ground is a nine-speed torque convertor automatic gearbox, allied to an all-wheel drive system with active differentials featuring an active central differential and an electronic rear limited slip differential (eDiff). This allows the torque to be moved precisely both fore and aft in the vehicle and also across the rear axle. When combined with the bespoke steering system that has been tuned to deliver feel and sports car-like response, DBX imbues the driver with an overriding sense of control, whatever the conditions.
Aston Martin’s first ever full-size 5-seat model is not only exceptionally versatile in terms of the terrain that it can tackle, it is also extremely adaptable to a wide variety of lifestyle needs and owners. Designed to accommodate the world’s 99th percentile male and 5th percentile female, DBX has been very deliberately created with instant familiarity and ease of use from the start.
With 632 litres of boot space and 40:20:40 split folding rear seats DBX possesses all the flexible load capacity expected of an SUV with class-leading interior space. The load space offers a practical and cleanly designed space. A narrow load sill and broad aperture maximises the practicality for a variety of luggage, such as suitcases, golf bags and ski equipment.
Complimenting the incredibly high standard specification of DBX, which includes all available active safety systems, there are many optional accessory packages offered. These packages will tailor the car even further to customers’ needs, sports or pastimes. For example, the Pet package will include, amongst other things, a portable washer to help attend to the needs of a muddy dog after a walk. Alternatively, the Snow package will deliver boot warmers to make a ski trip just that little bit more pleasurable.
The luxuriously handcrafted interior of DBX has been designed to provide equal space and comfort whether sitting in the front or rear of the car. Class-leading headroom and legroom combines with a full-length glass panoramic roof and frameless door glass to offer a fantastically light and spacious cabin environment. The use of sports car seat packaging in the front not only provides the driver with exceptional support and long-distance driving comfort, but also provides knee and footwell clearance for those sitting behind.
Small touches throughout, including separate central armrests, glovebox design and the ergonomic positioning of the car’s key control systems, have been guided carefully by the input of the brand’s Female Advisory Board, dealership feedback and a variety of private focus groups held worldwide. Not limited to this area, the guidance provided has been key to the success of DBX’s overall design.
The seats are trimmed in sumptuous, full grain leather, sourced from long term partner Bridge of Weir. An industry first, both the headlining and electric roof blind are available in a luxurious Alcantara® finish, providing a harmonious design, light obscuration and solar attenuation without compromising headroom. Throughout the cabin, DBX maintains an authenticity of materials, with judicious use of metal, glass and wood throughout the cabin.
Another design highlight includes the elegantly crafted bridged centre console allowing for both flexible storage below and a beautiful, architectural centrepiece. This feature keeps valuables close to hand while not occupying the passenger seat and away from dirt on the car’s floor mats. As part of ‘Q by Aston Martin’ – Aston Martin’s personalisation service – optional features of this centre console can be machined from a solid piece of wood, such as Walnut, for added tactility.
A contemporary range of exquisite wood, composite and metal veneers ensure that the cabin can be tailored to any taste. This includes a range of innovative materials and an industry first application of a fabric made from 80% wool. A new flax composite – derived from the same plant as fine linen – also provides an alternative to carbon fibre and a distinctive design aesthetic.
Framed by these materials is an abundance of technology. A 10.25” TFT screen sits elegantly flush in the centre console, while a huge 12.3” TFT screen provides a wealth of information to the driver. Apple CarPlay comes as standard, as does a 360-degree camera system and ambient lighting that offers 64 different colours in two zones.
DBX’s exterior works as hard as the interior at bringing the elegance of Aston Martin’s sports cars into the world of the SUV. From the signature ‘DB’ grille at the front, through the sculptured sides and design feature line, to the tailgate with a flip that draws inspiration from Vantage, this is an Aston Martin from first glance to detailed inspection. Beautiful details like the hidden side glass seals on the frameless doors and glass B-pillar finishers add an elegant sleekness and confidence to the stance. Cutaway sills also assist in narrowing the stepover required to enter the sumptuous cabin, while reducing the risk of ruining a fine dress or suit on arrival to a dinner engagement.
Aerodynamics were an important consideration within the design process and this included the novel experience for the team of running computational fluid dynamics (CFD) tests with a DBX towing a trailer with a DB6 on it. At the car’s front, the daytime running lights (DRLs) have an integrated aerodynamic duct, which channels air through the front wheel arches and along the side, helping to reduce both drag and lift while also cooling the brakes. Air flows cleanly over the roof, through the rear wing, over the rear window and on to the rear flip. This unique approach and design detail allows the rear screen to self-clear on the move. Aerodynamic design has also played a key part in passenger comfort because as one of only a few companies using computational aeroacoustics technology, Aston Martin’s engineers have been able to keep cabin noise to a minimum at speed.
Aston Martin is incredibly proud that DBX, an SUV intended to expand the sales reach of the brand worldwide, will be built in Britain at the new manufacturing plant in St Athan, Wales. With its all-wheel drive system, DBX is a car that will allow the company to increase its presence in markets where perhaps the weather or terrain is less than conducive to rear- wheel drive sports cars. The clear emphasis on a spacious and luxurious cabin – whether seated in the front or back – will also allow Aston Martin to better reach customers who prefer to be driven rather than drive.
The Aston Martin DBX is available from the base price of RM818,000 (before duties, customization options, taxes and insurance) and is now available for viewing and booking.