Classic cars have a certain romance about them, but owning one isn't all sunshine and roses. They can be temperamental, and lack the creature comforts that make modern cars such a joy to own. In the case of some classics, driving them can also reduce their value dramatically, so the only way to enjoy them is looking at them in a climate-controlled garage. One possible way around this problem is to rebuild a classic car today, sticking to the original blueprints to ensure authenticity. That is the approach Aston Martin has taken with the DB4 GT Continuation.
Aston Martin isn't alone in breathing life into a beautiful classic. Jaguar announced a run of 1957 XKSS roadsters would be produced for well-off buyers earlier this year, and the company also brought the E Type back to life in 2014. David Brown Automotive offers classic British styling in a more modern package, too, although it lacks the authenticity of a real manufacturer reboot.
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The DB4 GT Continuation revives one of the most valuable Aston Martins ever made. When it was launched in 1959 the GT was an evolution of the road-going DB4, designed to elevate its performance with smaller, lighter bodywork and a more powerful inline-six engine. Timed at 152 mph (245 km/h), it was the fastest production car of its day and just 75 examples were built between 1959 and 1963, of which just eight were special lightweight models. According to Aston Martin, surviving examples are now worth well over £3 million (US$3.8 million).
Aston Martin will make a real effort to ensure the Continuation is "faithful" to the design of the original lightweight GT, while still injecting a dose of modernity into the powertrain and chassis. Aston Martin Works says it will use a combination of classic production methods and more modern techniques to make the cars, taking care to ensure the modern touches and techniques don't undermine the classic character.
Under the hood, the DB4 GT Continuation will be powered by a version of the straight-six engine from the original car. It makes 340 hp (254 kW), sent to the rear wheels through a four-speed manual gearbox and limited-slip differential. True to its ancestor, it rides on a shorter wheelbase than the regular DB4, which means there are no rear seats.
Just 25 examples of the modern DB4 will be built, and they're all already sold. Owners will be able to enjoy their cars on a two-year tour of global racetracks. A team of instructors will be on hand to teach drivers the nuances of hustling a classic car around the track, just in case touring the world with your rebuilt Aston Martin racer wasn't enough.
"Aston Martin has a rich and vibrant heritage, as you'd expect from a company that has been building some of the world's finest sports cars for 103-years," says Aston Martin CEO, Andy Palmer. "Of those the DB4 GT stands proud as one of the most coveted of all. It's a mark of Aston Martin's breadth of abilities that in the same year we launched the DB11 – our most advanced 'DB' production car ever – we can also embark on an adventure such as the DB4 GT Continuation."
Deliveries will start in Q3 2017.
Source: Aston MartinView gallery - 4 images