Aston Martin has undergone some profound changes in recent years. From the arrival of Executive Chairman Lawrance Stroll in 2020 to shifts all throughout its management, the British carmaker is poised to enter a new era. Stroll said he wants to turn AM into "a British Ferrari." A statement that tracks given the arrival of former Ferrari boss Amedeo Felisa as the brand's CEO in 2022.
Today the carmaker announced the first product of this new direction, the 2024 Aston Martin DB12. It sports a redesigned front end, a massive power bump under the hood, and a completely redesigned cabin. This update to the brand's DB line had been rumored for months, but with the DB12, it's clear that it isn't just a refresh. It's a complete overhaul.
|Engine||Twin-Turbocharged 4.0-Liter V8|
|Output||671 Horsepower / 590 Pound-Feet|
|0-60 MPH||3.5 Seconds|
|Top Speed||202 MPH|
The first thing to note about the DB12 is that despite its heavily updated styling, it isn't an all-new model. As its rear suggests, it's still based on the DB11, albeit with significant updates. The first is its front end, which features a much more prominent grille, splitter, and redesigned LED headlights.
Its front and rear track widened by 0.24 inches (6mm) and 0.87 in (22mm), respectively. AM equipped the DB12 with 21-in wheels as standard, wrapped in model-specific Michelin Pilot Sport 5S rubber to accentuate its new stance. Subtler updates include frameless side mirrors, presenting door handles, and a redesigned wings badge that sits atop the DB12's massive hood.
Despite all the changes to its nose, the DB12's rear remains relatively untouched compared to a DB11. These components essentially carry over from its predecessor, from its LED tail lights to its twin exhaust tips and lower diffuser.
A Mercedes-AMG-sourced twin-turbocharged V8 powers the DB12, and unlike DB11, there's no V12 option available, at least for now. That said, it develops 671 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque, a full 143 hp, and 77 lb-ft over a V8 DB11. It even dwarfs the V12 DB11's output by 41 hp and 74 lb-ft, meaning that this V8 now delivers a formidable set of figures despite its smaller displacement.
This engine's extra output comes from a higher compression ratio, larger turbochargers, and updated cooling elements. It now houses two new auxiliary coolers aside from its central radiator to ensure repeatable performance. These updates were expected, given that we saw a similar strategy when AM pushed the DBX to 697 hp last year.
All of that power still goes to the DB12's rear wheels via an eight-speed torque converter automatic transmission. Flat out, it'll sprint to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds and top out at 202 mph. Aston Martin claims a 3,714-pound dry weight figure, so expect its curb weight to fall somewhere around 4,000 lb with full fluids.
The DB12 is seven percent stiffer thanks to additional bracing and adds a new electronic rear differential and adaptive dampers to sharpen its handling characteristics. AM claims that the dampers are more capable and versatile, drastically shifting their characteristics between drive modes. Thus, despite stiffer anti-roll bars, the DB12 can preserve its ride quality while delivering an improved driving experience.
The DB12's most significant changes undoubtedly live in its interior. Despite carrying some of its powertrain and aesthetic from the DB11, its cabin is all new. Behind its all-new steering wheel sits a 10.25-in digital instrument cluster, which like its analog predecessor, still places the tachometer in the center flanked by navigation maps or media. Its center screen shares the same size but is now operated by touch and comes standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity.
While the screens are new, so is their layout. Its central infotainment unit no longer sticks out from the dashboard. It now blends seamlessly and is angled closer to the driver. Despite adding new displays, the DB12 retains traditional buttons, switches in its center console, and a sizable start button.
Tech aside, the DB12's interior improves its material quality with new leatherwork on its doors, dashboard, and carbon-fiber sport seats. Where the DB11 was an elegant GT with an aging cabin, the DB12 arrived as competitive and potentially segment-leading thanks to extensive revisions.
As of writing, Aston Martin has yet to release official pricing figures for the DB12. However, its latest GT is currently available to order at dealerships, with expected delivery dates to begin around Q3 2023.