Guess who vroomed into town recently. The first stunner groomed by Aston Martin’s ‘Second Century’ plan, the heir of the illustrious ‘DB’ bloodline, the most powerful Aston to wear a DB badge, the most awaited all new Aston Martin DB11! This beautiful beast was showcased at ITC Gardenia, Bangalore on October 17, 2016.
We learnt that the DB11 will grace the Indian roads early next year. The DB11 is pitched as the most powerful, most efficient and most dynamically gifted DB model in Aston Martin’s history – a journey that has given us icons like the DB2/4, DB5 and, most recently, the DB10 developed specifically for James Bond. With legacy of this kind and expectations soaring high ever since its worldwide preview at the 86th International Geneva Motor Show earlier this year, the DB11 promises to impress the Indian consumer.
The DB11 also boasts multiple driver-selectable modes – GT, Sport and Sport Plus. A fresh and distinctive design language, pioneering aerodynamics and a potent new in-house designed 5.2-litre twin-turbocharged V12 engine sets the DB11 apart. An Aston Martin’s heart is the engine and the DB11 has one which develops 608PS1 (600BHP1) and 700Nm1 of torque. A top speed of 200mph1 and a 0-62mph time of just 3.9sec means the DB11 is an accelerative dynamo.
The DB11 is a beauty inside-out. The front-hinging clamshell bonnet, distinctive LED headlights and accentuated lines of the iconic Aston Martin grille are striking and the profile is equally dramatic with clean and uninterrupted lines .
The DB11 combines the very latest technology developed in conjunction with technical partner, Daimler, with the finest craftsmanship. Luxury connoisseurs are presented with infinite options to personalize the interiors of the DB11 making the already exciting experience of owning an Aston Martin, even more special.
At the media preview, we had the opportunity to speak with Sandeep Gupta, General Manager (Sales & After Sales, Aston Martin Mumbai ) who gave us an interesting peek into the brand, its philosophy and more.
Aston Martin came to India recently. Tell us how the ride has been so far…
We entered the Indian Market in 2011 and we’ve seen a fair share of ups and downs. The DB11 is game changer, a powerful start to an upward journey and the road ahead looks exciting as we are all set to launch one new car every year here on, starting with the Vantage next year
For a global company like Aston Martin, how big and how important is India as a market?
India is a small market but it is definitely important to us. The buyers here are more price-conscious and need to believe in the price range, which they have bought into now. The customs duty is high, but that isn’t stopping car enthusiasts from coming forward and buying the cars of their choice.
Aston Martin has been in our lives for the longest time now. How has a physical presence in India changed the market for you?
As a brand, Indians are very aware of the Aston Martin but yes, the brand’s physical presence has made a difference. The Indian buyer is now more comfortable and confident that the company is around for support – after all the relationship goes beyond just buying the car. We’ve started seeing Aston Martins on the roads across the country and hope to see many more soon.
Is there a difference in the attitudes across the country?
In terms of buying behavior and attitude, The Northern and Western regions are more open to experimenting and going for something new. Buyers in South India still rely heavily on word of mouth and first-hand experiences of their friends and families before making a purchase.
How is an Aston Martin viewed? It definitely isn’t just a car…
Aston Martin is a collector’s item, one that makes an emotional and sentimental connect with the owner. We take our buyers through the entire process of how an Aston Martin is built. It takes close to 55 days to build one car and this helps them feel a sense of belonging with the brand. Most owners look at it as something they’d like to hand over to their next generations. This is very different compared to owners of other brands who sell their cars within a few years.
The sentimental Indian buyer is also at times and in certain segments, heavily celebrity-driven. Has the brand considered putting a face to the machine?
We believe in the market, the economy and our buyers and don’t feel the need to bring in that angle. Of course, The Aston Martin- James Bond history adds to the magic and charm.
Tell us about a typical Aston Martin owner
There was once a conference with the CEOs of top companies and Ulrich Bez, who stepped down as CEO of Aston Martin in 2013 to serve as a Non-Executive Chairman, was asked how he defines an Aston Martin owner and he said “Aston Martin owners wear their suit labels on the inside.” That’s the level of sophistication we’re talking about. The appeal of an Aston Martin which is more soul and less pomp is so all-encompassing that age is just a number when it comes to our evolved owners- the youngest owner is 20-years- old and the oldest, 80.
That’s quite a profile to have. Speaking of the beauty being showcased, there’s already so much about DB11 that’s out there. What stands out for you?
The DB11 has moved from being beautiful to being ‘hot.’ There are people who own Italian cars who are now eyeing this design icon and showing interest in buying it. The specs of the DB11 have caught the attention of these manufacturers who are now keen on including a GT feature in their cars. This is a perfect combination of luxury, sport and comfort.
How has the DB11 been received so far across the cities you’ve traveled to (the DB11 was showcased in Mumbai, Goa before coming to Bangalore and was headed to Chennai and Hyderabad later)?
We have a lot of people who are very interested. The wait has been long and people have been patient. The DB11 is sure to impress.
Supriya is talkative, funny, crazy, positive, a believer, a thinker, an RJ, a voice-over artist, a daughter, a mother! She loves smiles and sunshine and knows that if you really believe in something, it’s all yours! Working with radio for over nine years has taught her a lot, as a person and a professional. The importance of time, of words, of thoughts and of what all of this means to the other person. She takes nothing for granted and is grateful for life and honestly considers “thank you” to be the most powerful phrase ever. She blogs at http://thought-pitara.blogspot.in/