'If you want a truly British driver's car, the ultimate development of a continuous line of thoroughbreds from the Vintage era to the present day, there is nothing in quite the same field as the Aston.' – The Motor on the Aston Martin DB6, 26th November 1966.
The culmination of Aston Martin's long-running line of 'DB' six-cylinder sports saloons, and thus considered by many to be the last 'real' Aston, the DB6 was introduced in 1965, updating the DB5. Although recognisably related to the Touring-styled DB4 of 1958, the DB6 abandoned the Superleggera body structure of its predecessors in favour of a conventional steel fabrication while retaining the aluminium outer panels. Increased rear-seat space was the prime DB6 objective so the wheelbase was now 4 longer than before, resulting in an extensive restyle with more-raked windscreen, raised roofline and reshaped rear quarter windows. Opening front quarter lights made a reappearance but the major change was at the rear where a Kamm-style tail with spoiler improved the aerodynamics, greatly enhancing stability at high speeds. These many dimensional changes were integrated most successfully, the DB6's overall length increasing by only 2. Indeed, but for the distinctive Kamm tail one might easily mistake it for a DB5.
'The tail lip halves the aerodynamic lift around maximum speed and brings in its train greater headroom and more luggage space,' revealed Motor magazine, concluding that the DB6 was one of the finest sports cars it had tested. 'The DB6 with its longer wheelbase and better headroom makes an Aston Martin available to the far wider four-seater market, and the design is in every way superior to the previous model. A purist might have though that the longer wheelbase would affect the near-perfect balance of the DB5, but if anything the DB6 is better.'
The Tadek Marek-designed six-cylinder engine had been enlarged to 3,995cc for the preceding DB5 and remained unchanged. Power output on triple SU carburettors was 282bhp, rising to 325bhp in Vantage specification. Borg-Warner automatic transmission was offered alongside the standard ZF five-speed gearbox, and for the first time there was optional power-assisted steering.
It is an irony that, having brought the original DB4 concept to perfection in the form of the DB6, Aston Martin chose to change direction with the larger DBS and successor V8-engined models. Today the accomplished DB6, despite being the most evolved and practical of the original DB family is also, somewhat paradoxically, the most affordable.
Equipped with the optional automatic transmission and power assisted steering, this DB6 has been the subject of a bare-metal restoration, which included a mechanical overhaul and was completed in 2015 (photographs on file). The workmanship's high quality needs to be seen to be appreciated, and the car is reportedly a delight to drive. Presented in generally very good condition, the Aston has formed part of a prominent private collection in the South of England and has been very well cared for. It is finished in opalescent blue with a matching blue leather interior, and comes with a V5C registration document, MoT to July 2019, and a history file.
Last-of-the-line models are always sought after by discerning collectors, and among Aston Martins few are more highly prized that the final flowering of the glorious 'David Brown' six-cylinder series.