Much like how the previous DB9 ushered in a new generation of cars from Aston's Gaydon, UK, headquarters, the British carmaker says the DB11 will kick off its "Second Century Plan." An insider told us that Aston is in the final tuning stages, and as such, the engineering prototype pictured here is likely the closest thing we've seen to a final production-spec car. While early mules had moldings and panels, we now have a good sense of the DB11's proportions, and can clearly see the rear-wheel-drive coupe's character lines. We can also see an aero-lip intake under the grille that appears to be significantly wider than on the DB9. Beyond being aesthetically pleasing, this is a necessary addition for better cooling.
Gaydon's partnership with Daimler will soon yield the new Mercedes-AMG 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 engine for use in Aston Martin cars, but the Brits surprised us recently by showing a teaser of a 5.2-liter twin-turbo V12. The timing is curious, and makes us suspect that the DB11 will continue the 12-cylinder tradition, despite the pressure to be increasingly fuel efficient. Our sources tell us power is expected to be above that of the naturally aspirated V12 Vantage's 565 horsepower and 458 pound-feet of torque. While the current DB9 boasts a six-speed automatic gearbox, we understand the V12 will be mated to a new transmission with more speeds. It's possible the DB11 could get the ZF-sourced eight-speed automatic that Aston recently added to the Vantage and Rapide range. The DB11 will ride on an all-new chassis, and in continuing the industry trend, the new car should be lighter, tipping the scales below the current DB9's 4,000-pound mark, despite some new equipment.
Our sources tell us power is expected to be above that of the naturally aspirated V12 Vantage's 565 hp and 458 lb-ft of torque.
The Daimler partnership should improve a major area where Aston has historically lacked: in-car technology and infotainment. We expect a large, modern screen with Aston-specific graphics, a Mercedes-style scroll wheel, and a far more intuitive and advanced system than anything we've seen from Gaydon yet.
The Aston Martin DB11 will likely drop in just a few weeks time at the Geneva Motor Show and we're told it will go on sale later this year.