'Like all classic GT cars, it combines enormous speed with comfort and the more you put into your driving, the more the car returns for your entertainment. And the DB5 really is entertaining to anyone who can exploit its outstanding performance, handling and brakes. It will also carry four people (just) and a fair amount of luggage so the merits of family transport (if need be) have not been entirely sacrificed to speed and elegant looks.' – Motor.
Introduced in July 1963, the Aston Martin DB5 represented a further evolution of the preceding DB4 series rather than the beginning of an entirely new model line. The major change was the adoption of a 4.0-litre version of the (previously) 3.7-litre six-cylinder engine, this enlarged unit having been seen first in the Lagonda Rapide of 1961. Equipped with three SU carburettors the '400' engine produced 282bhp at 5,500rpm and was mated to a four-speed/overdrive gearbox, a 'proper' ZF five-speed unit being standardised later. Outwardly there was little to distinguish the DB5 from the final 'Series 5' DB4 apart from twin fuel filler caps, though these had already appeared on some cars. Beneath the skin however, there were numerous improvements including alternator electrics, Girling disc brakes instead of Dunlops, Sundym glass, electric windows, and an oil pressure gauge as standard equipment. 1,021 DB5s were manufactured between July 1963 and September 1965, a total that included 123 convertibles and 12 shooting brakes.
Its accompanying copy guarantee form reveals that chassis number '1614/R' was delivered new on 11th June 1964 to Cyril Williams Motors Ltd. The DB5 was delivered finished in Sierra Blue with Fawn Connolly hide trim, and left the factory equipped with a limited-slip differential and heated rear screen. First registered as 'AJW 646B', the Aston had been purchased by Messrs William Sharp (Birmingham) Ltd for a Mr Horton, presumably one of its directors. The AMOC Register records two Belfry Concours awards for the DB5 while it was in Mr Horton's ownership (in 1966 and 1968).
The Horton family subsequently relocated to the Isle of Man where the car was reregistered as '1964 MN'. In May 2005, after a remarkable 41 years in the Horton family's ownership, the DB5 was purchased from them by Mr David Campbell, whose various addresses are recorded on accompanying documents as Onchan, Isle of Man; Helen's Bay, County Down, NI; and Dublin, RoI. While in the Hortons' ownership, the Aston had been looked after (from approximately 1970) by renowned marque specialist, Andy Chapman, whose recollections of it are on file. A re-spray in original livery had been carried out at approximately 60-70,000 miles, but no mechanical work was undertaken until David Campbell took the DB5 to renowned marque specialists Post Vintage Engineers Ltd in 2005. Post Vintage have looked after the car ever since, as evidenced by numerous invoices on file, one of their first tasks being to overhaul the cylinder head and convert it to accept unleaded fuel. Prior to his purchased, David Campbell had had the DB5 inspected by Colin Thew, former Service Manager with Aston Martin, whose detailed report, describing it as in generally very good condition, is on file.
Post Vintage's association with the Aston, now reunited with its original registration, 'AJW 646B', continued when ownership passed to Mr Peter Mimpriss of Nayland, Suffolk in September 2009. Prior to Mr Mimpriss taking delivery, Post Vintage had rebuilt the engine, enlarging it to 4.2-litres capacity in the process, and fitted air conditioning (illustrated record on file). In letters to Post Vintage's Managing Director, Adrian Johnson, Mr Mimpriss was able to report that the DB5 had 'performed faultlessly' for the entire 1,750 miles of the 2010 AMOC Tour of Spain, and also for the 2,000 miles of that year's NATO Tour of Northern England and Scotland.
Shortly thereafter, ownership passed to Mr Michael Wilson of Lytham, Lancashire. Power assisted steering was fitted by Aston Engineering Ltd of Derby in April 2014, but apart from that, Post Vintage Engineers Ltd continued to maintain and service the car. Works carried out recently (in April 2015) include an interior re-trim to original specification in Connolly hide; supplying and fitting a new rear bumper, re-chroming the front grille and front bumper; and replacing all window glass. The most recent service bill on file from Aston Engineering dates from July 2017.
The car also comes complete with its original jack and tool kit, instruction book, MoT to April 2019, and a UK V5C Registration certificate. Benefiting from long-term single family ownership, always well maintained and never requiring extensive restoration, this superb DB5 is worthy of the closest inspection.