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Bodystyle, dimensions and technical details

The Aston Martin DB11 is the first new series-production car in 15 years to be built on underpinnings other than the firm’s ‘VH’ platform.

Like the VH structure, the new platform is made of pressings, castings and extrusions that are bonded and riveted together.

Two-tone paint feels unbecoming of this car. The styling is quite colour-sensitive but a body-coloured roof is classier

But the way those elements combine is new, making for a monocoque that’s at once lighter (by 21kg) and stiffer (by 39%). It also intrudes less into cabin space.

The DB11’s body panels are mostly aluminium, except for the plastic-composite quarter panels and bootlid and the injection-moulded plastic bumpers and sills. Magnesium door frames also keep weight down.

Built in the same Cologne factory as the normally aspirated V12 still found in other Astons, the DB11’s new engine is essentially the same 5.9-litre unit, with its cylinder stroke shortened to 69.7mm and its capacity reduced to 5204cc.

Twin turbos make peaks of 600bhp and 516lb ft, the latter available between 1500 and 5000rpm. The Aston Martin DB9 went out with 457lb ft at 5500rpm, so it should feel like a transformative difference.

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Cylinder bank deactivation also features, but there’s still no stratified direct fuel injection. Aston says changing emissions legislation would have made now a bad time to dip a toe into that particular water.

The styling looks like a deliberate move away from the seductive curvaceousness of Aston’s VH cars towards a more modern and aggressive idiom, but it leaves much of the firm’s trademark gracefulness intact.

Intelligent aerodynamic design feeds air out of the front wheel arches, via the front wing vents, to reduce front axle lift, while inlets in the C-pillars channel air through the rear wings and out of the rear via the ‘aeroblade’ virtual spoiler.

Aston’s rival, Ferrari, has been doing similar things with ‘aerodynamic design by subtraction’ for some years, but not always quite as neatly as this.