Classic sports cars are often associated less with suave MI6 agents than with middle-aged men with deep pockets and a mid-life crisis to match. That’s changing as Nicholas Mee & Co, Aston Martin Heritage Dealer in West London, aims at a new, (much) younger breed of customers. This Thursday, the dealership announced that it’s selling a fully functioning, petrol-engined miniature car inspired by the Aston Martin DB models of the 1960s. Designed for children age 10 and older, it doesn't have machine guns or an ejector seat, but it does have details like a wood-rimmed steering wheel.
Measuring 250 x 103 cm (98 x 40 in), the two-door, rear-wheel drive DB Convertible is hand-built and crafted with a composite body wrapped around a steel box chassis. The standard color is silver, but Nicholas Mee says that it’s also available in a wide palette of colors and can be painted to match a full-size Aston Martin.
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The 110 cc, 4-stroke, air-cooled petrol engine with key-operated electric starter may not seem like much, but it's pretty impressive for the Hamleys crowd. It has a semi-automatic 3-speed gearbox, coil-over suspension, and Brembo disk brakes.
Nicholas Mee is coy about the DB Convertible’s acceleration, but it does say that it can do a blistering 46 mph (74 km/h), though this can be restricted downwards to suit speed-conscious parents.
The interior of the DB Convertible is nicely understated with a black color scheme and a choice of leather or vinyl interior trim. On the dash are working indicators, and the lights operate as well. In addition, in the words of Nicholas Mee, “[F]or those Mr Toad moments, the horn will Parp! Parp! in an instant.”
The DB Convertible also boasts a fully adjustable pedal box, so the adults can have a go as well. “You'd be surprised how well the DB Junior is engineered, and how much room there is in the cockpit,” says Managing Director Nicholas Mee. “It’s big enough for an adult and the pedals can be adjusted so that the DB Junior will fit a wide range of drivers. Let’s say ‘junior drivers of all ages’."
The DB Convertible is available for immediate delivery or bespoke commissioning. However, like the Aston Martin DB it’s modeled after, the DB convertible doesn’t come cheap. It's priced at £16,500 (US$27,000).
The video below introduces the DB Convertible.
Source: Nicholas Mee & Co
Update (Feb. 4, 2014): Since the publication of this story we've been made aware that Nicholas Mee & Co. doesn't produce the DB Convertible, but simply sells it. The design and manufacture of the DB Convertible and other junior cars is done by Nathan Redfearn of the Harrington Group, which offers the DB Convertible via its website for a slightly more reasonable £7,995 (US$13,000).