SUV Sports Car? Welcome back to RBR, and to the The SUV with the soul of a sports car! Built in new St Athans plant in Wales, it’s a crunch moment car for Aston. The last of Andy Palmer’s second century legacy before the coming of AMG Legend Tobias Moers as the new CEO.
Car industry fact: SUV’s make money, and this DBX has been planned since 2015. Looking at the Cayenne’s success it’s easy to see why: they make money in the right countries, with the biggest demographics. So for a company wanting to boost their customer reach and build cash reserves, this DBX is a big deal. As we saw, the first Concept DBX was an utterly bizarre one. Thankfully, they settled on a much more mainstream shape, something a supercar customer can use as their go to school vehicle.
It’s an odd one though: it’s priced bang smack in Urus and Bentayga territory, starting at 158k, you’ll get to 170/180 with some ease on a configurator, probably a faster than the DBX could reach 180MPH. But the Urus has major performance advantages with 650 hp, 0-60 in close to 3 seconds… vs the DBX’s 540 and 4.3. Heck, a fully spec’d RSQ8 has 600 BHP and 3.8 seconds for 126k!
So what can the Aston bring to the table to differentiate itself in this fiercely competitive market, it ways that it’s siblings in the DB11 and Vantage seem to do with ease? We will explore this on the drive.
Many assume that since the engine and gearbox are AMG sourced, alongside the infotainment and some switch gear means that the whole car must be Mercedes sourced. E63 clad mules didn’t help that case but that is simply not the case. Just like the DB11, this is a whole New SUV platform, clean sheet for the SUV. Bonded aluminium just like the sports car Aston platform. Being their own platform has given them freedoms in terms of chassis, design and technologies. The shape of the car, it is shorter in height than the rivals, and sometimes seems the size of a car the class below. This is in part due to the smooth edges and short overhangs. The Vantage similarities no doubt help. Yet despite this, it’s class leader in interior space. Theres also a flat floor with no sill to climb over, making it the easiest in class to get in and out of.
In terms of internals, of course it AMG V8 as seen used in Vantage and DB11 but it only has 542BHP and 700NM, and a slowish 4.3second 0-60. The 9 speed is apparently also Mercedes based, but of course with Aston’s own software and driving modes as we will discover. It has Triple volume air suspension linked to a 48v anti roll system - 1400nm of anti roll force per axle. And the ride height is fully adjustable - All wheel drive system has the eDiff limited slip in the rear, torque split fully variable.
SO all of this, very typical of today’s performance SUVs. On paper at least, we will have to see how the custom platform fairs when we drive it!
|Channel||Remove Before Race|
|Episode title||Aston Martin DBX! Can it ever justify the price? Full Review|
|Date added||11 February 2021|
|Original date||9 February 2021|
|Production||Remove Before Race|