Although always intended to house the new Tadek Marek-designed V8 engine, the Aston Martin DBS was launched in October 1967 with the 4.0-litre 'six' of the concurrently produced DB6. Styled in-house by William Towns, the beautiful DBS caused quite a stir, Autocar magazine observing: 'Without the aid of an Italian stylist the Newport Pagnell team came up with something as modern, handsome and Italianate as anything from the Turin coachbuilders at that time.'
Beneath its shapely exterior the DBS employed a platform-type chassis with independent suspension all round: wishbone and coil-spring at the front, De Dion with Watts linkage at the rear. Larger and more luxuriously appointed than the DB6, the DBS was, inevitably, heavier but the Vantage version's top speed of 140mph and a standing quarter-mile time of 16.3 seconds were highly respectable figures nonetheless. Assessing the virtues of Aston's new flagship, Autocar judged it superior to the DB6 in many areas, the bigger DBS offering four full-sized seats in addition to transformed handling and roadholding courtesy of the new rear suspension and standardised power steering.
'Turning to matters other than performance, we really were most tremendously impressed by the DBS,' enthused Car magazine. 'The interior, especially merits praise not only for its uniquely satisfying aesthetics and superb finish (way, way ahead of any Italian rival in this respect) but also for the thought that has gone into the ergonomics of its layout.'
First registered in the UK on 28th August 1968 (as 'VJT 79'), this early DBS is the 43rd example produced, and subsequently was reregistered as 'MUF 535F'. MoT Certificates for the period 1985 to 2001 show the recorded mileage increasing from 44,559 to 57,521 during this time, a total of 12,962 miles in 16 years. At some time the engine was removed and a 4.2-litre Jaguar unit installed, and on 20th October 2001, the Aston was exported to New Zealand where it spent most of the time in storage, covering only 586 miles, before returning to Europe in 2017.
This DBS finished in white with original black leather interior, the latter intact and in good condition, and comes with its original engine ('400/3640/S'). It thus represents and an exciting and potentially most rewarding project, with the options of converting to manual transmission or an updated automatic unit during restoration. EU import duties have been paid.