Now pay very close attention, 007: you’ll be driving the new Aston Martin DB11, complete with additional modifications, perfect for avoiding those annoying little traffic jams and for tracking down a certain Ernst Stavro Blofeld, who has apparently escaped from prison. And ‘M’ has awarded the car a special seal of approval.
The ‘M’ in question here is the UK’s Metro newspaper, which has given the new Aston Martin DB11 model very high praise indeed in a review published on August 17, calling the car ‘fantastic to drive’. The Aston Martin car company, of course, is heavily associated in the public’s mind with the James Bond film series and, as all good Bond aficionados know, Aston Martin also supplied a specially built DB10 model for the most recent 007 adventure SPECTRE.
Aston Martin’s latest creation, the DB11, was first unveiled back in early March, 2016. It has already been called ‘the most important car in the firm’s 103-year old history’. It was launched at the Geneva Motor Show in Switzerland, and is a £155,000 ($217,000) four-seat sports GT, with a long bonnet and a powerful V12 petrol engine. And, as the Metro has put it in its recent review, it is ‘a motoring beauty’.
(00) Seven New Models
In its review, the London-based Metro noted: ‘Aston Martin has a plan, and for a small company it’s a bold one. Between now and 2022, it will launch seven new models. It begins with the DB11, the replacement for the DB9 grand tourer’. According to the newspaper, ‘The DB11 is remarkably different from its predecessor, and terrific for it. The biggest difference between the new and old car is in ride quality, which was fidgety before but is now impressive’. The car is also ‘surprisingly agile for its weight, and lets you corner with confidence’. In addition: ‘The DB11 is impressively stable on the motorway. Its V12 engine has power and to spare when you’re cruising on the motorway; it can always provide effortless pace’.
In the Metro’s estimation, although inevitably expensive, the new DB11 – when compared with its close rivals – is good value and ‘Aston Martin certainly looks on track for success in the next few years’.
Aston is Forever
In fact, as the JBIFC has previously noted, the DB11 marks a major step forward for Aston Martin, after the company suffered considerably during the depths of the recent financial recession, and the official predecessor to the DB11 (the DB9) did not sell as well as the company had expected. The man seen by many commentators as putting some drive and energy back into the company is their new boss Andy Palmer, who negotiated a recovery plan for the company, and is something of a Bond fan himself. Appointed as CEO of the company in 2014 after a long spell at Nissan, Palmer was keen to build upon the 007 legacy. When asked about James Bond, he told the City-AM newspaper in December, 2014: ‘I’m a British man, of course I love Bond. I watched about one Bond film a day when I was on gardening leave from Nissan!’
The Bond connection remains extremely important for the company. It is hoped that the huge publicity generated by the use of the special DB10 in SPECTRE (which was originally unveiled by director Sam Mendes at the first official press call for the movie at Pinewood), together with the extensive interest that has already been shown in the new DB11, will help the company regain its former highly competitive position as a world-class manufacturer of iconic sports cars and vehicles. Although no ejector seat or bullet-shield is available for the DB11, even ‘Q’ would still be tempted to take it for a quick spin!
Did You Know?
In Goldfinger (1964), in the now iconic scene where the late Desmond Llewelyn – playing gadgets expert ‘Q’ – introduced Bond to his new Aston Martin DB5, Desmond only expected the filming to last one day (a Friday). However, when he arrived home on the Friday evening after completing his scenes, he received an urgent phone call from one of the assistants to the director Guy Hamilton, who told Desmond that producer Cubby Broccoli wanted him back on Monday for more filming. He was delighted.
The producers and director had decided to do an ejector seat scene, where ‘Q’ carefully explained the mechanics of the gadget in order to build audience anticipation and suspense. Llewelyn, of course, was very pleased with some extra hours filming, and it led to some highly memorable dialogue. Responding to a clearly sceptical Bond, an exasperated ‘Q’ commented: ‘I NEVER joke about my work, 007’.
Cinema audiences simply loved this. And still do.