Engine options, top speed, acceleration and refinement

Sometimes I really do wonder, Q. When you told me it did 0-60mph in 3.2sec, were you just trying to wind me up because at the time you thought I’d never get to drive it, or have you spent so much time in the laboratory that you and the real world are now as strangers to each other?

I got really excited about that – in an entirely cool kind of way, you understand. But what did it do on the test track? Yes, 5.7sec. I reckon the 2CV was quicker than that rolling down the hill.

Turning off the traction control involves rummaging around in the passenger footwell, not an elegant solution

In the interests of fairness, I must concede that the tests were conducted in less than ideal conditions, by a pair of perhaps larger than average technicians hobbled by a non-functioning revcounter, a slightly slipping clutch and a keen awareness that breaking the car would result in the publication of several blank pages in a well-known weekly car magazine.

They estimate that, in ideal circumstances, the car would have at least matched the 4.6sec claimed for the standard V8 Vantage, upon whose internals, I am told, the DB10 is actually based, but that 3.2sec would require almost as great a leap of the imagination as an invisible Vanquish, a tiger sitting on command, a parrot being used as a plot device and Denise Richards playing a nuclear physicist.

However, your staff must be commended for providing such an impressively broad torque band from the 4.7-litre engine, a far more useful tool to an agent in a hurry than a theoretically higher peak available only for one revolution, just before maximum power.

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The technicians were struck in particular by its ability to travel from 50mph to 70mph in 6.9sec in top gear – as fast, they say, as a Porsche 911 GT3 RS, whatever that is.