Sunday, January 27, 2008
Aston Martin DB9 Volante
The First Convertible from Aston Martin on the VH Platform
The elegant Aston Martin DB9 Volante made its world premiere on January 4th at the 2004 Detroit Motor Show - the sixth new car from the company in less than two and a half years.
The DB9 Volante is the latest model from Aston Martin and is also the 13th convertible from the company - joining a prestigious line-up of post-war convertibles that stretches back to the DB2 of 1950 and includes the DB4, DB5, DB6, V8 and DB7. However, this is the first convertible ever to use Aston Martin's unique VH Platform (Vertical/Horizontal) Strategy and the first to be built at the newly opened Aston Martin Gaydon facility.
The DB9 Volante is built alongside the DB9 Coupe, which was launched at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September 2003. Both models are hand-built at Aston Martin Gaydon with the Coupe being delivered to customers since Spring 2004 and the Volante since Autumn 2004.
Dr. Ulrich Bez, CEO of Aston Martin said: "From the outset of the DB9 program we knew we wanted a convertible model. So the Volante has been designed, engineered and built from the outset as a convertible - it's not a Coupe with just the top taken off.
"The DB9 Volante has all of the traditional styling cues you'd expect from a convertible Aston Martin. It's very elegant and perfectly proportioned from every angle, while subtle embellishments help create a powerful-looking sports car."
Designed by Henrik Fisker, Aston Martin's Design Director, who took styling cues from previous Aston Martin convertibles, the DB9 Volante has a fully retractable hood that is stored within the body of the car when closed allowing the car to retain a very smooth and elegant profile.
"I wanted to ensure that the DB9 Volante was unmistakably an Aston Martin, but it had to retain all of the values of a convertible. Even with the hood raised it had to look beautiful," said Mr. Fisker.
The hood is operated by the push of a button and retracts within just 17 seconds. When down, it folds behind a hard tonneau cover, which then electrically closes flush with the DB9's bodywork. The DB9 Volante has a boot capacity of 197-liters and has two rear seats.
In the event of an accident, sensors in the DB9 Volante detect the risk of a potential rollover and two roll-hoops are deployed from the rear seat headrests, while front seat passengers are protected by the windscreen A-pillars which can withstand twice the total body weight of the car.
Like the DB9 Coupe, power for the Volante is supplied by Aston Martin's low emissions, all-alloy, 48-valve, 6.0-liter, V12 engine. Like the DB9 Coupe it is offered with a six-speed automatic or a six-speed manual transmission.