‘Superleggera’ is a construction technology for automobiles that was developed and patented some 80 years ago. At least 9 carmakers licensed the technology for certain models over the years, including Aston Martin which first used it on the DB4 grand tourer in the late 1950s.

Now, along with the return of the iconic DBS nameplate, Aston Martin is also reviving the Touring’s Superleggera version. A collaboration that originally paved the way to the DB4, 5 and 6 Mark 1, the new DBS Superleggera pays homage to the historic super lightweight construction technology of the famous Italian coachbuilder.

In the new DBS Superleggera, Aston Martin has a Super GT that’s a breed apart. Clad using immaculately sculpted carbonfibre body panels, this latest model features muscular, highly individual styling. Its appearance fully matches the epic performance promised by the company’s 5.2-litre twin-turbo V12 engine.

As the British marque’s new Super GT flagship, the DBS Superleggera replaces the Vanquish S. That would be tough to follow but the new Superleggera does so admirably with 725 ps/900 Nm, a claimed top speed of 337 km/h and acceleration said to be 0 – 100 km/h in just 3.4 seconds.

The V12 engine is set low and as far back in the chassis as possible to optimise the centre-of-gravity and weight distribution. Detailed tuning, together with a new exhaust strategy with active valves and quad tailpipes, give a commanding and powerful sound character, particularly in the more aggressive dynamic modes, while retaining a level of refinement and civility that complements its role as the consummate Super GT.

While being resolutely modern in design and engineering, the DBS Superleggera proudly evokes the towering reputations of Aston Martin’s hardest hitting and best-loved flagships from the past. Combining generous proportions with aggression and athleticism, the form expresses itself with an explicit design language. It is a form that combines compelling curves with advanced aerodynamics for a sleek shape that both cheats the wind and clamps the car to the road, as Aston Martin describes it.

Evolving innovative aerodynamic concepts first seen on the DB11 – such as the curlicue and Aeroblade – and then taken further with an F1-inspired double-diffuser, the DBS Superleggera generates 180 kgs of downforce at maximum speed – the highest figure ever for a series production Aston Martin. This significant increase comes with no additional drag penalty.

The chassis is an evolution of the latest generation lightweight bonded aluminium structure first seen on the DB11, with forged double wishbones at the front and a sophisticated multi-link system at the rear. Latest generation adaptive damping is standard, with sensors detecting the prevailing driving conditions, as well as the demands the driver is making of the car.

Both the powertrain and chassis have a choice of three dynamic modes – GT, Sport and Sport Plus – which can be selected by the driver to intensify or relax the car’s responses according to the needs of the driver.

For the £225,000 pricetag in the UK (about RM1.2 million), there’s a generous level of standard equipment, of course. As befits its flagship status, the DBS Superleggera features a high level of craftsmanship with extensive scope for personalisation via a generous choice of options. Supple, aromatic leather and Alcantara upholstery comes as standard, as do the Sports Plus performance seats and steering wheel. There is also a choice of striking Designer Specifications, with specially chosen colour and trim combinations selected by the Aston Martin Design Team to accentuate certain aspects of the DBS Superleggera’s character.

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[Chips Yap]

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