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Car Tales: Very Persuasive, Aston Martin DBS

‘As we know, that ‘DB’ signifier on each Aston Martin stands for David Brown, the genius behind the beautiful and very high-end UK sports cars. But all good things do indeed have to come to an end: accordingly the Aston Martin DBS, in production from 1967 to 1972, was the last of these luxurious Grand Tourers.

 

1969 Aston Martin DBS for sale
‘Even by then the DBS was almost synonymous with the fictional superspy James Bond, that was developed and built under the overseeing and visionary eye of Mr Brown.

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‘We have one of these cars at the very moment at Beverly Hills Car Club, a rare 1969 Aston Martin DBS (1 of only 181 left-hand drive DBS) finished in a color scheme of British Racing Green complemented with a gorgeous tan interior. Equipped with a 5-speed manual transmission, front-wheel disc brakes, Weber carburetors, Smiths instruments, Lucas ammeter gauge, quad headlamps, dual exhaust outlets, ‘Vantage’ badging, Moto-Lita steering wheel, chrome trim/bumpers, air conditioning, Kienzle analog clock, sun visors, headrests, knock-off wire wheels with Michelin tires, and a full-size spare tire fitted in the trunk. This is an extremely coveted DBS that is currently not running and is an exciting opportunity to be a part of a select few to own a piece of British automobile history.
1969 Aston Martin DBS side view
‘David Brown was born in 1904 from Huddersfield Yorkshire, a background as gritty, northern English, and distant from 007 as there could be. This cloth-capped Northern cliché of the location was symbolized by the 6 miles he would need to cycle each morning, to arrive by 7.30 AM, when at the age of 17 he started work as an apprentice at his family’s business.
‘David Brown & Sons was an engineering company, principally engaged in the manufacture of gears and gearboxes. Despite this, perhaps almost inevitably considering the tone of the times, his father had no interest in cars and didn’t drive. But David Brown’s mother was a keen motorist: by the age of eleven her son was capable behind a motor-car’s steering-wheel.
‘After his father had offered to buy his son a motorcycle to ease the stress of those morning bike journeys to work, David Brown persuaded him to buy a Reading Standard 1000 cc V-twin, an extraordinarily powerful machine – and even more so when its youthful new owner modified it in order to race in local hill climbs.
1969 Aston Martin DBS rear view
‘In an effort to remove him from what his father saw as an unsuitable romance, the young David Brown was sent to South Africa – where he handled himself extremely well, taking charge from a frequently inebriated director of the company.
‘On his return he began to assemble his dream car. The result was what he called the ‘Daybro’, replete with a Sage 2-liter engine and a Meadows gearbox. David Brown’s expertise with gearing – in the blood, one might feel – gave him plenty of contacts, notably with Aston Martin and Amherst Villiers. David Brown finally achieved his ambition in 1947. David Brown Limited, which by now he ran, bought the struggling Aston Martin company, setting it on track for the next quarter of a century.
1969 Aston Martin DBS interior
‘The DBS was intended as the successor to the Aston Martin DB6 – in fact, the two ran concurrently for three years. Powered by a straight-six engine, it was built from 1967 until 1972, when it was replaced by the Aston Martin V8.
‘The DBS had been styled by Aston Martin itself, by William Towns. And Towns’ design drew forth the plaudits. ‘Without the aid of an Italian stylist,’ wrote Autocar, ‘the Newport Pagnell team came up with something as modern, handsome and Italianate as anything from the Turin coachbuilders at that time.’ It was also larger and more luxurious than the DB6, with four full-sized seats, and had a top speed of 140 mph.
‘The 1970 British television action series The Persuaders featured a pair of adventurous international playboys acted by Tony Curtis and Roger Moore.
In the shows the Curtis character drives a red Ferrari Dino 246GT and Moore owns a Banana Yellow Aston Martin DBSV8.
‘But Aston Martin, eager to introduce the new DBSV8 to small screen viewers, discovered that unfortunately there was no available version of the car – even before they were finished items, they had all been sold.
1969 Aston Martin DBS engine
‘Accordingly Aston Martin came up with a non-V8 DBS, adding GKN alloy wheels and DBSV8 badges to disguise the fakery. Moore’s character was called Lord Brett Sinclair and the car accordingly had the number plate ‘BS1’ – after permission had been granted by Billy Smart, a well-known British circus impresario who personally owned that specific number plate.
‘Although The Persuaders was a success in Europe, it never really took off in the USA. After its first season The Persuaders was cancelled.
‘And thereby Roger Moore was freed to take on the role of James Bond, a part in which he never once drove an Aston Martin.
-Alex Manos, Owner
Aston Martin DBS buyer Alex Manos

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