- Price from: £154,900
- Our favourite version: DB11 5.2 V12, list price £154,900
- Check the latest Aston Martin DB11 lease prices
Aston Martin was one of the most talked-about brands at this year's Geneva Motor Show. In addition to the frankly epic Valkyrie, it also launched its AMR high-performance sub-brand and teased us with examples from its new 'Q' bespoke vehicle division.
All of that makes the DB11, which we drove in 2016, feel a bit passé. But given that this grand tourer will be followed in time by a Vantage sports car, Vanquish flagship and even an SUV, the DB11 is the clearest sign of Aston’s future prospects.
It has rear seats, but they are not easy to access
Space for those in the front is good, with room for a tall driver to get comfortable and no danger of bashing elbows with your passenger.
The DB11 does have a small pair of rear seats, which include Isofix child-seat mounting points. Whether or not you could squeeze a child seat through the tiny opening between the folded front seat and the car’s bodywork is another matter, however, and realistically all but small children will find the rear accommodation seriously uncomfortable.
In the style of a grand tourer, the boot will accommodate a couple of small cases, and there’s more storage under the armrest and in the small door pockets.
Devours miles with ease
While they suited this tester, another colleague didn’t get on with the DB11’s seats over a long journey, which suggests that an extended test drive to ensure compatibility would be wise.
Otherwise comfort levels are excellent, with an impressively cosseting ride considering the low profile tyres, and very little engine noise at motorway speeds (it ticks over at a barely audible 1,500rpm at 70mph). While there is the sound of wind rustling past the windows at higher speeds, tyre roar is impressively well controlled on all but the noisiest of roads.
Dashboard layout 9/10
Looks wonderful and is largely intuitive to use
The DB11 features an new dash design and is all the better for it. The large digital dials are clear and unfussy, and the central control panel neatly blends Aston craftsmanship with Mercedes controls (the German brand has a stake in Aston that allows the two companies to share technology).
While there are quite a lot of buttons to contend with, you soon get used to operating the main functions, and the infotainment system works well.
Easy to drive 7/10
Can feel a bit intimidating at times
As with any big grand tourer, the first thing that strikes you about the DB11 is its size. This is a very large car and requires a steady hand to guide it through narrow towns and car parks, particularly as over-the-shoulder visibility is poor.
Aston addresses this by offering a multitude of cameras situated around the car that project images on to the infotainment screen, along with ultra smooth controls, whether it’s the steering, throttle, brakes or the standard eight-speed automatic gearbox.
Fun drive 10/10
Guaranteed to put smile on your face
It’s when you get the DB11 on the open road that it really starts to shine. All of a sudden its width is less of an issue and you can enjoy the huge performance on offer from the 5.2-litre V12 engine. With 600bhp and 516lb ft of torque it will get the DB11 from 0-62mph in just 3.9 seconds and has so much grunt when the turbos really start to deliver at 2,000rpm that you simply have to hold on tight and enjoy the ride.
In wet conditions the DB11 can feel a touch twitchy, but the accurate steering and lack of body lean when you set the car into its firmer suspension modes show that it is much more than just a cruiser.
Warranty matches Porsche and Bentley
As a new car with a new engine, it’s hard to say how reliable the DB11 will be, and Aston Martin doesn’t build enough cars to feature in the JD Power dependability survey, either.
Book a free Aston Martin DB11 test drive
Fuel economy 5/10
What did you expect?
While the DB11 uses a smaller, turbocharged engine compared with its predecessor, it’s still not what you’d call a modest unit.
At 5.2 litres it dwarfs most other engines on sale, although did prove more economical than expected in our hands, recording between 25 and 28mpg in gentle driving.
Start to really enjoy the performance and you can expect that figure to take a tumble.
If you have to ask...
Of course the £155,000 Aston Martin DB11 is not what could ever be described as an affordable car for most people. However, placed in the context of its rivals, that figure is actually not too bad. If you want a Bentley Continental GT with the same cylinder count you’ll need to pay more, and while a Porsche 911 Turbo S is £10,000 cheaper, it doesn’t have the same aura as the Aston, which is also predicted to cost less to run than the Bentley over three years and 30,000 miles.
Don’t get your hopes up too much though – it’s still ludicrous by any other measure, and insurance and servicing costs won’t be cheap, either.
Should be safe in a crash, but missing some of the latest active equipment
Aston doesn’t sell enough cars for them to be crash tested by Euro NCAP, but the DB11 has all of the expected airbags and a very advanced stability control system as standard.
It’s disappointing to note that an autonomous emergency braking system, which can help to prevent you from running into the car in front is not available on the DB11.
Standard spec 10/10
Lots of equipment, as you’d expect
The Aston Martin DB11 comes with all of the equipment you’d expect such as leather seats and Alcantara headlining and keyless go, but it’s the hard-crafted materials that really make an impression – and where you can significantly add to the car’s list price. At this end of the market, though, anything less would be an oversight.
Our favourite version
DB11 5.2 V12, list price £154,900
Options you should add: Whatever takes your fancy
The Aston Martin DB11 is one of the finest grand tourers on sale, with a wicked turn of speed, fabulous styling and a truly premium feel. If all future Astons are set to be as good as this, then the company is in safe hands.
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