Aston Martin's DB9 replacement will get a twin-turbo AMG V12 engine, as latest test mules show new interior
14 August 2015

These are the latest pictures of Aston Martin's DB9 replacement testing - dubbed the Aston Martin DB11 by insiders.

Most interesting about these new pictures is the DB11's interior, which has been caught on camera for the first time. The pictures confirm the DB11 will be offered with a digital instrument cluster, hardware increasingly being adopted by premium car manufacturers. A digital cluster often negates the need for a separate infotainment screen, as seen in Audi's latest TT.

These pictures also show that Aston Martin is testing the DB11's instrument cluster by using a modified version of Mecedes' COMAND software - although the British manufacturer will likely use its own software for the production car. Several pieces of Mercedes-Benz switchgear can also be seen inside.

The DB11, which is due to go on sale in 2017, has previously been spotted testing at the Nürburgring, where labels on the car confirmed the prototype is powered by a twin-turbocharged V12 engine.

The DB9 replacement will be built around an all-new bonded aluminium platform and is also set to be powered by a new twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 engine designed and built by Mercedes-AMG.

Mercedes-AMG will not provide a bespoke version for Aston. Instead, off-the-shelf engines will be modified to sound, respond and feel like an Aston Martin engine. Spy photographers have reported a particularly loud sound coming from early test mules.

Modifications would extend to bespoke engine management and exhaust systems and possibly revised turbo boost pressures but no internal mechanical changes. 

Even if no more power is liberated, the base 503bhp tune of the new V8 is close to the 510bhp of the existing 5.9-litre V12, but it comes with 479lb ft at just 1750rpm, compared to 457lb ft at 5500rpm for the current unit.

Installed in a car claimed by an insider to be “dramatically” lighter, performance will improve. Economy and emissions figures are also set to be 20 per cent better than those of the current DB9.

The motor will be mated to Mercedes’ new nine-speed automatic transmission. In the meantime, the existing DB9 will use the old six-speed ZF unit rather than be upgraded to a new ZF eight-speed unit.

Aston Martin executives have already admitted the new car might not carry the DB9 name. Speaking to Autocar last year, Aston Martin design director Marek Reichman said: "It’ll definitely be a DB, but what number will follow that is yet to be decided.”

Reichman also hasn't ruled out simply reusing the existing name – an idea some senior Aston executives are known to be keen on.

The car is unlikely to carry the DB10 name, with that designation going to the car which will accompany James Bond on his 24th big screen adventure, Spectre. The styling of the DB10 is understood to closely preview that of the DB9 replacement. Instead, the name DB11 has now emerged as a possible nameplate for the new Aston.

Reichman said the shape of the new car would be more than an evolution of the current model. “There’ll be a little more revolution in it,” he said. “It will be unmistakably an Aston and a DB at that, but it will look fresh and modern.”

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Aston Martin DB9
The Aston Martin DB9 is a V12-engined grand tourer

The Aston Martin DB9 matches the emotion of a Ferrari but it adds practicality and offers an experience unmatched for versatility and all-round appeal

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Comments
48

8 August 2014
Oh dear! They are going to downgrade an AMG engine to "sound,respond and feel like an Aston Martin engine" sounds like a retrograde step to me,to what is arguably the worlds best high performance engine maker. Wonder how it will perform head to head vs the new AMG-GT .

Madmac

8 August 2014
For the results of Merc tech and Aston sublime design mix.. I gotta feeling this is going to produce a GT that will be finally up there dynamically too as well as In terms of pure design and luxury! Although I hope that Merc finally get a gearbox right.. Often they are 90% off the best boxes!

8 August 2014
Call it.....Aston Martin SL500.

8 August 2014
Why did your artist think putting the plate V12 AML on a car with a V8 would be a good idea?

8 August 2014
I noticed the same thing, indeed it is a glaring error. Let's hope the new DB9 doesn't arrive wearing a similarly ill thought out skin. If the new Aston isn't simply stunning to look at then why pay more for Mercedes running gear than Mercedes will charge you for it?

8 August 2014
Same here all new redesign front & back. I hope it will look the Loganda.

8 August 2014
So how is Aston supposed to survive the next two years?!

289

8 August 2014
Jeeeeez, this naming thing is tough.... Ermmmmm,ermmmmm, ermmmmm, aha got it - DB10 ! Genius

8 August 2014
Although I really like the picture (apart from the wheels) I am a bit worried about the level of Merc parts and lack fo bespokeness to it. Where is the value added if all you are paying for is a pretty body shell. Unlike Clarkson I am not a fan of the drony Merc SLS style sound and hope that they manage to capture the same magic of the sound of the current V12. As the family currently own a DB9 I feel a bit mixed about all this at the moment.

8 August 2014
LewisMc wrote:
...I am a bit worried about the level of Merc parts and lack fo bespokeness to it. Where is the value added if all you are paying for is a pretty body shell.
As far as mechanical items go, I'd much rather have excellent technology, engineering, efficiency and reliability than to be bespoke. The interior and exterior designs are where Aston Martin excel. I'm not an Aston Martin fan, but, in my opinion, this deal with Mercedes-Benz is a real winner for them.

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