by Karl Furlong
Aston Martin is about to embark on a massive new product offensive and the DB12 is the first of them, as well as the world's first super tourer, a term that aims to signify its greater talents over the traditional grand tourer. Fusing sharper handling and the ultimate in comfort and refinement, the new DB12 takes over from the DB11 just as the company celebrates 75 years of the DB model line.
A 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 engine produces 671 horsepower to send the new DB12 to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds, but it's the attention that's been paid to the underpinnings that should truly elevate the driving experience beyond that of the DB11. An all-new in-house infotainment system set in the Aston Martin DB12's ultra-luxurious interior further solidifies its superiority over the car it replaces.
See trim levels and configurations:
4.0L Twin-Turbo V8 Gas
The release date for the Aston Martin DB12 is scheduled for the third quarter of 2023 when deliveries will begin. Aston Martin hasn't specified that the car will be coming out in major markets at different times, so this is when we can expect the DB12 to arrive in the USA as well.
As with other exotic automakers like Rolls-Royce and Ferrari, Aston Martin prefers a discreet approach to pricing, knowing that its customers largely won't care how much they have to pay. For that reason, we don't have an official price for the 2024 Aston Martin DB12 coupe, but based on the "super tourer" designation, we wouldn't be surprised to see it cost around $250,000 MSRP before options.
Rivals will include the Bentley Continental GT, which seems to lean more towards comfort than the DB12, while Ferrari's Roma is also worth a look at this price point.
Aston Martin hasn't always blown its rivals out of the water in terms of sheer ability, but its cars have a certain curbside appeal that has been almost unmatched through the decades.
The exterior design of the new Aston Martin DB12 coupe has much to live up to, then, but it seems to have done enough to earn its place in some future installment of James Bond. The track widths have increased to emphasize the muscularity of the new shape, and the latest Aston Martin wings badge makes its first appearance on the nose of the DB12.
The front features a larger radiator aperture and restyled splitter, along with stylish LED headlights with new daytime running lamps. There are smaller wing mirrors with a frameless design, and even entering the car is an occasion thanks to the new presenting door handles. 21-inch forged alloy wheels are standard in a choice of three designs, and despite being larger than the 20-inch wheels used previously, the new ones are lighter by over 17 pounds. These new wheels are shod in bespoke Michelin Pilot Sport S5 tires designed specifically for this car.
At the back, the DB12 features a deployable spoiler with an Aston Martin Aeroblade system.
Dark Grey Anodized brake calipers, a Satin Chrome Vaned grille, and solid paint are standard, but there will be a range of other colors for the Aston Martin DB12, along with various ways to customize its appearance. The paint options include Metallic, Racing Line, and Satin/Special/Heritage palettes from the Q by Aston Martin selection. The color and wheel combination in these images is sublime.
Various brake caliper colors will be available such as Bronze, Aston Martin Racing Green, and Yellow, and the roof panel can be finished in gloss 2x2 twill carbon fiber.
Despite its restyled body, the dimensions of the Aston Martin DB12 are almost identical to the older DB11. In fact, the 110.4-inch wheelbase is exactly the same length. The DB12 measures 186 inches in length and 84.4 inches in width when the mirrors are included. As for the height, that's a sportily low 50.9 inches.
The dry weight of the DB12 works out to 3,715 pounds, again within the same vicinity as the DB11.
The engine in the Aston Martin DB12 is a 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 delivering 671 horsepower and 590 lb-ft of torque, the latter on tap between 2,750 and 6,000 rpm. These specs are even greater than the older DB11 V12, which made 630 hp and 516 lb-ft, so the new DB12 is considerably more powerful. Modified cam profiles, larger turbos, and optimized compression ratios are responsible for the increase in the V8's outputs.
Once again directing power to the rear wheels exclusively, the V8 is paired to an eight-speed torque converter automatic transmission with an electronic rear limited-slip differential, marking the first time that any DB model has been equipped with an E-Diff. The DB12 will cover the 0-60 mph run in 3.5 seconds before reaching a top speed of 202 mph; the DB11 V12 had a slightly higher top speed of 208 mph, but that's purely academic.
Aston Martin has put in an extraordinary amount of effort to deliver what it calls the sharpest DB ever. The E-Diff, for instance, can switch from fully open to 100% locked in milliseconds, enhancing the car's precision. The bonded aluminum structure's global torsional stiffness is up by 7%, there are new intelligent adaptive dampers, and the non-isolated steering column helps to deliver "pure and uncorrupted" feedback to the driver.
There is a new electronic stability program with four modes - Wet, On, Track, and Off - that relies on numerous sensors, the primary one being a new six-axis inertia measurement unit. It uses algorithms to ascertain how much grip is available in real-time and can immediately react to any instabilities. Besides these four settings, there are five drive modes: GT, Sport, Sport+, Wet, and Individual.
Those Michelin tires are noteworthy for being developed specifically for this car. They come with 'AML' codes which means they have a unique compound and have been tuned by Aston Martin itself. Comfort and refinement have not been cast aside in the desire to make the DB12 more engaging, as these tires even have noise-canceling polyurethane foam inserts that reduce tire 'hum' in the cabin by 20%.
For harder use on the track, the DB12 can be equipped with carbon ceramic brakes that lower unsprung mass and provide fade-free braking at much higher temperatures.
The cumulative effect of these and other changes promise a much broader range of dynamic capabilities that Aston claims is far beyond that of any rivals. Furthermore, Aston claims that no prior series production model has been developed to set new dynamic benchmarks to the extent of this new DB12.
EPA-rated data will likely only be available closer to the car's launch, but we can use the DB11 V8 as a gauge of what to expect from the DB12. The older car returns 18/24/20 mpg city/highway/combined.
The DB12 has a 20.6-gallon gas tank so would have a range of around 412 miles, assuming similar consumption to the DB11.
Luxurious fittings and a snazzy design have always been attributes of Aston Martin interiors, but the DB12's main talking point will be its next-generation infotainment system, an in-house design from the brand that will hopefully answer the criticisms of the DB11's dated interface.
Dual 10.25-inch screens can be used to view key information, and the system supports both wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Aston Martin says that reaction times of the capacitive touch controls are ultra-responsive, and there is a new navigation system. Customers will now be able to find a destination via the Aston Martin App before easily sending it to the DB12, and 3D mapping provides clear instructions for lane guidance and traffic overlays.
Another first for the DB model line comes via over-the-air updates so that new functionality can be added over time. An e-SIM along with connectivity via 4G LTE is available. For the first three years, customers can enjoy a car subscription package with features like theft alert and a voice assistant, and three subscription packages will be available for purchase.
An 11-speaker sound system with QuantumLogic sound processing is standard, but customers can spend more on a 15-speaker Bowers & Wilkins system.
The tech fest doesn't begin and end there, as the new DB12 will be available with an array of driver-assistance systems. That includes a driver drowsiness detection system in case the characterful V8 doesn't keep you awake, plus adaptive cruise control, traffic sign recognition, and blind-spot monitoring.
Leather covers the standard seats in the Aston Martin DB12, and it's complemented by Satin Chrome interior jewelry, a black Alcantara headlining, and gloss black inlays. The hand-stitched Bridge of Weir hides are the real deal, as Aston promises an aromatic, cosseting space thanks to this opulent upholstery. Of course, that's just the beginning as the cabin can be comprehensively tailored to each customer's tastes. Semi-aniline leather or even a full carbon fiber performance seat will be on offer, as will various aluminum, carbon fiber, or wood trim inlays. The standard heated seats can be upgraded with 16-way adjustment and ventilation, and there are available heavy pile floor mats.
At 9.2 cubic feet, the available cargo space inside the Aston Martin DB12 is nothing special, but this is unlikely to deter too many. Besides, there is always the DBX SUV for more challenging cargo-carrying duties.
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