Back in January, we reported on a new British coachbuilder called David Brown Automotive. In February, the startup released the first details and images of its inaugural project, and now it has revealed the finished product.

It's called Speedback, and it's based on the Jaguar XKR. But while it's built on a modern chassis (relatively, anyway – the XK arrived in 2006 and is soon to be discontinued), it's been rebodied to look like a classic British GT. That means that, while it may look like a classic Aston Martin, it's got a thoroughly modern 5.0-liter supercharged V8 under the hood with over 500 horsepower on tap.

Otherwise, little in the way of details have been disclosed – including what you can bet will be an astronomic price that tends to come with these sorts of coachbuilt customs. But the important parts are what you can see, and that means the finest British craftsmanship inside and out. Whether you like the particular style or not, of course, is entirely a matter of taste.

David Brown (a different one, incidentally, from the late Aston chief whose initials still adorn the latest DB9) revealed the car today in London ahead of its debut appearance at the Top Marques show in Monaco next month. Scroll down for a video and the official press release.
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David Brown Automotive unveils Speedback: its first stunning model, ahead of Monaco public debut

- New model revealed to the media at exclusive preview in London
- Speedback name announced
- Car to be exhibited at Top Marques Monaco in April

LONDON 27th March 2014: At an exclusive media briefing in London today, David Brown Automotive unveiled its unique handcrafted GT car for the first time.

It was also revealed that this exciting and highly anticipated new car, which is designed, engineered and hand-crafted in Britain, will be called Speedback: a name which reflects the elegant yet purposeful lines of the V8 powered sports coupé.

Speedback will remain at the venue in London over the weekend for viewing and will then travel to Monaco to be shown publicly for the first time at the exclusive Top Marques show, which runs at the Grimaldi Forum from 17th to 20thApril. The car will be on display on stand F3 and the full team will be available to discuss the car, its specifications and to take orders during the event.

Company founder and CEO, David Brown has a long-standing background in engineering, vehicle manufacturing and an equally strong enthusiasm for both classic and contemporary cars (although he has no connection with either Aston Martin, its founder, Sir David Brown, or with the David Brown Group). With his concept for a classically styled GT car with modern mechanicals and reliability, he began to assemble his specialist team some two years ago.

He said: "The launch of Speedback is the realisation of a dream for me, and is the result of skilful and dedicated work by a team of highly talented designers, engineers and craftsmen. I am delighted at the reaction of the media, our suppliers, potential customers and friends, and I look forward to presenting the car to the public in Monaco.

The Speedback name perfectly reflects the classic sports car tradition of the past, whilst also doing justice to the sophisticated silhouette of the car's hand-built body and unique styling which features amongst much other detail, a fold-down picnic seat."

The car revealed today is the result of 18 months of hard work by the David Brown Automotive team, including highly-experienced Chief Designer, Alan Mobberley. The car, which has been engineered and handcrafted in Coventry, proudly uses traditional British materials and craftsmanship. Speedback promises exceptional performance and handling from the latest Jaguar 5 litre supercharged engine.

Customers of Speedback are able to request any level of tuning or engine enhancements they desir

"This car will appeal to anybody who desires a truly individual sports car, which can boast a fine British pedigree and which will only be produced in limited numbers, thus ensuring the kind of exclusivity associated with Britain's once proud heritage of traditional, high-quality, automotive coach- building", said David.

Also on display was a unique handcrafted 1:4 scale British granite model of Speedback, crafted by Lapicida in Harrogate.

The London media briefing and subsequent launch party was held at the London showroom of specialist stone suppliers, Lapicida, another of David Brown's business interests. Guests were also able to lean against their handcrafted marble bar and enjoy speciality beers from one of David's latest business venture, BAD Company; a craft brewery based in North Yorkshire. The three brews, Dazed & Confused, Love Over Gold and Comfortably Numb were the perfect accompaniment to this handcrafted British car.

Today also saw the full David Brown Automotive website launched, featuring full information on Speedback, beautiful images of the car and the craftsmanship behind it. You can also join the conversation on Twitter and Facebook using #HistoryInTheMaking.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 24 Comments
      Zaki
      • 8 Months Ago
      The essence of classic British automotive beauty distilled into one car....very fine indeed.
      JaredN
      • 8 Months Ago
      I love it.
      pheasant601
      • 8 Months Ago
      Niiiiice! There's something about it that's throwing me off and I think it's the greenhouse and I think that has more to do with the XKR than anything. So basing this off a different car might mean better results. Either way, massive props because this is a phenomenal take on an old look.
        herrstreet
        • 8 Months Ago
        @pheasant601
        I agree. It might be that it's just too long. The front overhang also seems too big
      mbukukanyau
      • 8 Months Ago
      Old mans car. Does it come with a Viagra box?
      ugly rims
      • 8 Months Ago
      The front looks like a 2003 Ford Thunderbird.
      mawhalen53
      • 8 Months Ago
      The idea sounds good, but something is lost in the execution. It may be the headlights. Or the wheels.
        Kip
        • 8 Months Ago
        @mawhalen53
        Agreed. I think it's the nose. It's too stretched. It makes the cars proportions a little wonky. Kind of like the '57 Vette body conversion on the C6 chassis (though that was worse than this, imo).
      DesignWhuuu
      • 8 Months Ago
      This thing is pretty dumb
      johnnythemoney
      • 8 Months Ago
      Ok it's nice and all, but why? It's not going to cost as much as an authentic DB5, hopefully, but it wouldn't ride like one either. I see you just buy yourself a regular modern Aston, end of it.
        J.A. Smith
        • 8 Months Ago
        @johnnythemoney
        Astons are pretty slow, compared to other supercars. If you're going to fork over that kind of money, you should buy a Ferrari or a McLaren. You can buy a Jag F-Type R Coupe for less than half the price, and it will both look better and go faster than the Aston.
      d.hollywood
      • 8 Months Ago
      Not really feeling it. Reeks of "polished kit car".
      vi_per
      • 8 Months Ago
      Gorgeous.
        ffelix422
        • 8 Months Ago
        @vi_per
        Yes. Just need larger/lower-profile wheel/tires and she's good-to-go.
      Brex
      • 8 Months Ago
      I think it's a handsome enough car with the obvious DB5 cues up front but the proportions are peculiar and the aft end is awkwardly large and a bit reminiscent of a Mustang Mach 1. I wonder if a different donor chassis would have resulted in a more balanced exterior.
      Sims
      • 8 Months Ago
      I can say I only like the interior.
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