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  • Ahmed Saleh

Aston Martin celebrates 60th anniversary of iconic DB5 car

Aston Martin is leading the celebrations for the 60th anniversary of the Aston Martin DB5, widely considered the most famous car in the world.

This September marks the exact 60th anniversary of the debut of the first-ever Aston Martin, a model that has since become a symbol of the best of British in terms of design, ingenuity, and popular culture.

Aston Martin's DB5 and DB12, the latest addition to the brand's revered DB bloodline and the world's first Super Tourer, respectively, were the stars of the company's display at last weekend's Goodwood Revival festival in Sussex. Images of the two models together were unveiled today in honor of the milestone occasion, and they serve as a symbol of Aston Martin's illustrious history and promising future.

Aston Martin Executive Chairman and DB5 owner Lawrence Stroll reflected on the DB5's enduring appeal on the occasion of the car's 60th anniversary, saying, "The David Brown era gave us so many great Aston Martin sports cars but none more recognizable, revered, and desired as the DB5, which laid the foundations of our identity as a British luxury brand synonymous with style, performance, and exclusivity."

As it approaches 60, we must honor the significant contribution this automobile has made to our legendary 110-year history. We are immensely pleased that the DB legacy lives on with the celebrated DB12, which, like its predecessors, is an homage to the best of British hand-built sportscars while also incorporating cutting-edge innovations and unprecedented levels of performance.

Iconic Figure of the Sixties

Time period: 1963 Since its debut as an entirely new automobile for the brand in 1958, the DB4 has been a huge success for Aston Martin, which was riding high on the popularity wave. However, something novel was required to keep the brand on top in the face of intense competition from American and European manufacturers of premium sports cars.

Introduced to the public for the first time at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September 1963, the DB5 boasted a number of improvements over its predecessor in terms of design, technology, and equipment, most notably a major engine development that delivered even more power.

The saloon and convertible bearing this distinctive nameplate were manufactured at the company's headquarters and factory in Newport Pagnell, Buckinghamshire, for just over two years, but during that time they achieved the level of notoriety and prestige that places them among the most sought-after automobiles of all time.

Naturally, one fictional owner comes to mind, and there is no doubt that the decision by film producers EON Productions to put the world's most well-known secret agent behind the wheel of the new DB5 in a series of James Bond movies spanning more than half a century has cemented the new DB5's place in automotive history. However, James Bond is hardly the only famous person to have driven an Aston Martin.

As people crowded into Frankfurt to see the new DB5, the Swinging Sixties were about to begin, and soon many of the most famous actors, pop stars, and celebrities of the day would consider themselves privileged to be among the exclusive ranks of Aston Martin ownership.

Sir Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Mick Jagger were among the famous 1960s customers of the Aston Martin DB5. In addition to master comedian Peter Sellers, the model has been purchased by a slew of other famous people throughout the years, including Robert Plant, Jay Kay, Elle MacPherson, Ralph Lauren, and many more.

The DB5's popularity among celebrities was a major factor in Aston Martin's meteoric rise from obscure British sports car manufacturer to international icon.

Considering the total number of automobiles manufactured, this is astonishing. The original production run for the DB5 only resulted in 887 saloons, 123 convertibles, and 12 shooting brakes manufactured by hand. These figures were minuscule even for their day; in 1963, the United Kingdom produced over 1.8 million automobiles.

Power and Glory

The DB5 on exhibit in Germany was equipped with a significantly revised version of the 3.7-liter, twin-cam, straight-six engine that powered the DB4, a new 4.0-liter (3,995cc) unit capable of producing a then-remarkable 282 horsepower in basic trim.

That much-appreciated boost in power was just one component of a suite of fine-tuned technological and equipment modifications, such as the introduction of electronic windows and the provision of air conditioning as an option.

With a top speed of over 150 mph, the Aston Martin brochure of the day boasted, "The DB5 is the fastest regular 4-seat GT car in the world." Aston Martin's legendary performance was in keeping with the car's sleek design, which was the work of Italian coachbuilder Carrozzeria Touring Superleggera.

British automotive magazine The Autocar used that staggeringly outstanding figure in its initial road test of the new model to conclude that "this is a car that cries out to be driven, to be driven well, and to be driven far."

Interior of an Aston Martin DB5

The DB10 was the granddaddy of all grand tourers, paving the way for the DB12, the first Super Tourer, and once again establishing Aston Martin as the undisputed king of performance, dynamics, engineering, and technology.

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