The Aston Martin DBX breaks a lot of new ground for the iconic 108-year-old British automaker. It is its first SUV, and as such its first truly flexible, all-terrain lifestyle vehicle. It is the first time an Aston Martin has three-chamber adaptive air suspension, with up to 95mm difference between lowest and highest settings. It boasts of a new 48-volt active anti-roll system that keeps body roll under control even during the toughest corners. It is assembled at the marque’s new plant in St Athan, Wales, which opened in 2019 and was always meant to accommodate the DBX’s brand new, purpose-built architecture. Here, each Aston Martin DBX takes over 200 hours to assemble. Three and half hours are spent on hand-assembling the engine, and a further 50 on the finishing.
But there is also a lot that is familiar. It is still a DB, for starters, bearing the initials of influential one-time owner David Brown – and with it, a venerable sporting spirit. The DBX’s chassis is constructed out of the same lightweight bonded aluminium as Aston Martin’s sports cars and GTs, making it one of the lightest full-sized SUVs available despite its generous appointments. Its 4.0-litre twin-turbo is tuned by Aston Martin specifically for the DBX’s requirements. It is capable of 542bhp and 700Nm of torque, responsive over a wide range, and capable of sending the DBX from 0-100km/hr in 4.5 seconds and a top speed of 291km/hr. It has a sports car-approved suspension, with double wishbone at the front and multi-link at the rear. The all-wheel drive system can deliver up to 47 per cent of its power to the front wheels for better traction, but it can be almost entirely rear-wheel biased, too, for stellar driving dynamics.
And the DBX certain looks like an Aston Martin. It has the signature front grille of an Aston Martin that was first seen on the DB2 prototype in 1949, and a muscular bonnet profile reflective of the DB11. The logo is the same, of course, manufactured with traditional jewellery techniques by Vaughtons, a 202-year-old family-owned British company. The sculpt of the Aston Martin DBX has the elegant and functional aerodynamic quality of the brand’s GT cars, including side vents that reduce drag around the front wheel arches and a rear roof wing for added downforce. There is an upwards tick to the rear that, along with the slim, bar-like LED lamps, are reminiscent of the Vantage.
Inside, it is Aston Martin through and through. The cabin architecture has that familiar cocooning feeling, but headroom and legroom is not compromised in the least. The powertrain was designed specifically to leave the rear footwells with plenty of space. There is a broad range of options to customise the look of the interior, including various veneer options of woods, flax composite, or carbon fibre, and the upholstery could be a woven wool option that is the first of its type in a production car. Traditionalists, though, will surely opt for the sumptuous leather that Aston Martin sources from Bridge of Weir, a Scottish company that has been supplying some of the finest leathers in the world since 1905 – and with which Aston Martin has had a relationship with since the DB5 of the 1960s. If the exact shade or grade of leather is not in stock, the marque’s bespoke Q service will make it so, allowing the customer to have the versatile, comfortable, and sporty SUV of their dreams.
Engine: 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged V8
0-100km/hr: 4.5 seconds
Top Speed: 291km/hr
Aston Martin Kuala Lumpur
Tower 1, Ground Floor,
Lot 1.3, Etiqa Twins
No. 11, Jalan Pinang
Kuala Lumpur 50450