Wrapping your head around the cars that Sir Stirling Moss has driven over the course of the many decades in which he drove competitively would be a mind-boggling task. Regarded as the greatest Formula One driver never to win a World Championship, Moss won 212 out of the 529 races he entered, including 16 grands prix. He also competed in sports cars, including countless Maserati, Ferrari and Aston Martin racers.
Oh, the Astons he must have driven over the course of his career. As part of the factory works team, Sir Stirling piloted the likes of the DB3S and DBR1 to championship titles and race wins. But the latest is undoubtedly the most timid.
It's probably just what Stirling and his wife might need to get around London now that he's retired from racing for good, but we can't help but have a little trouble with the notion of one of the world's greatest racing drivers puttering about in reheated Toyota iQ. Details in the press release after the jump.
*UPDATE: Sir Stirling Moss gifted the Aston Martin Cygnet to his wife, Lady Moss... not the other way around.
12 July 2011 Gaydon: At the prestigious Royal Automobile Club last night, international motorsport legend, Sir Stirling Moss took delivery of his newly purchased Aston Martin Cygnet; a surprise birthday present for wife, Lady Moss.
One of the closest teams in motorsport for many years, Sir Stirling and Lady Moss planned a private celebratory dinner on the eve of her birthday at the Royal Automobile Club in its clubhouse the century old, 'palace on Pall Mall' in London. On arrival they were met with the sight of the new Aston Martin Cygnet on display in the magnificent central rotunda – the culmination of six months planning and 'secret' correspondence between Sir Stirling and Aston Martin to plan a surprise birthday present for Lady Moss.
Sir Stirling Moss said: "My greatest partner in everything that I do, Susie is an amazing person and frankly the best wife a man could have. Since seeing a pre-production Cygnet in January I knew that it was the perfect car for Susie; a proper little piece of British luxury and perfect for our life in town."
Hand-crafted at Aston Martin's headquarters in Gaydon, taking 150 hours to complete, the Aston Martin Cygnet shares much in terms of design and craftsmanship with the company's sports cars. Elegant and distinctive, individual and practical, the Aston Martin Cygnet is the ultimate Tailor-Fit solution for city living. Launched in May 2011 with first customer orders arriving at European dealers now, Cygnet is hand-crafted for the city and like every Aston Martin it can be uniquely personalised to suit individual taste and style, bringing a new level of luxury and bespoke capability to city cars.
Specifications for Lady Moss's car include Sir Stirling's choice of Aston Martin Racing Green, harking back to the company's sports cars that Sir Stirling raced in the 1950s, as the paint colour. This iconic exterior has been complemented by a simple and elegant interior hand crafted in Obsidian Black leather with a contrasting coarse silver stitch, forming a typically understated combination.
Adding to the occasion and its ongoing theme of long standing relationships with the marque, the Cygnet has been supplied through HWM Aston Martin, based in Walton-on- Thames, who were appointed as an official Aston Martin dealer in 1951. The longest serving of the company's global network of 134 dealers, HWM Aston Martin was started 60 years ago by fellow Aston Martin Works Driver George Abecassis who actually gave Sir Stirling his first Grand Prix drives in 1951/52 in HWM-built cars.
Sir Stirling's own driving career with Aston Martin saw him drive a number of the company's racing cars including the famous DB3S and DBR1 models with great success. This culminated in being part of the factory team that in 1959 secured the company the World Sportscar Championship following victories in the DBR1 at such prestigious races as the Le Mans 24-hour.