CAR #1958 #Aston-Marti-DB-MkIII
£260,000 / #Aston-Marti-DB2-MkIII
This car’s survived six decades without anybody feeling the need to comprehensively restore it, says Richard Gunn.
The high prices of DB-series Aston Martins means many have been expensively rebuilt. So it’s fantastic to see one that’s survived close to 60 years with only minor renovations in all that time.
Registered in July 1958, this Pacific Blue DB MkIII has seen some club racing, hence the Le Mans-style fuel filler cap, competition clutch and uprated dampers.
All this features in a comprehensive if disorganised history file. The paperwork dates from the earliest days of the car, and it seems like every bill and correspondence has been kept. The original logbook is there, as well as lots of early letters between the first owner and Aston Martin, plus invoices, service records and MoTs. There is a gap in the history between 1974 and 1984, when it is believed the car was stored. The current owner got it in 2005 and maintained it mechanically – the engine was rebuilt in 2010 – but he kept the exterior original. As such, he body shows some signs of age; it’s presentable on the whole but there are paint issues including bubbling and cracking around both front wheelarches.
The nose is stonechipped and the finish is dull and flat on the nearside bonnet top, with a small network of cracks there too. Another crack is apparent in the roof above the driver’s door. The chrome is tarnished in places, but this is only apparent up close. The #Avon-Turbospeed
165/95 16 89H tyres have lots of tread left.
The engine was rebuilt in 2010 and is still very tidy, with its bank of triple SU carburettors topped off by shiny modern K&N cone air filters. All fluids were at healthy levels, and the area under the brake fluid reservoir is free from corrosion. The interior appears completely original.
It’s well patinated but in a warm and inviting way. Some recolouring of scuff marks on the driver’s side bolster might be in order, while the occasional rear seats have a split in them. The grey carpets have some marks and the headlining is discoloured and stained in spots. By the driver’s footwell, the card lining is a little frayed in its top corner. There were no starting issues from cold, although the DB MkIII gives its best once fully warmed up. The idle does seem a little low, though. When cruising, the oil pressure gauge reads a healthy 60 to 70psi.
This MkIII pulls well but doesn’t pamper the driver, with heavy steering and clutch, but the gearbox is easy to use. Overdrive didn’t seem to be functioning, however. The brakes are excellent. The fuel gauge and rev counter show fluctuating readings, but the temperature gauge stayed in the normal zone throughout our test-drive. This Aston has some age-related issues but it’s a solid car that drives well.
The interior isn’t perfect but the marks, scufs and minor creases all add to the aged charm Once warmed up properly the inline sixcylinder engine performs beautifully.
CHOOSE YOUR DB2
The Aston-Martin-DB2 is launched in 1950 as the replacement for the previous 2-Litre Sports (retrospectively known as the DB1). Unlike its fourcylinder predecessor, the new car uses a Lagonda six-cylinder engine of 2580cc producing 105bhp, or 120bhp in Vantage spec.
The DB2 is developed into the DB2/4 during 1953, the extra digit denoting it can accommodate four occupants with its 2+2 seating arrangement. Power is up to 125bhp, then 140bhp when the 2922cc engine is introduced. Windscreen is now a onepiece curved item and a hatchback with larger glass area is introduced on fixed-head coupés (drophead variants are also available). A MkII in 1955 sees minor changes such as higher roof, small tailfins and a modified bonnet.
The DB2/4 MkIII – usually known as simply DB MkIII – appears in 1957. Power from revised and stronger engine is now 162bhp and front disc brakes are fitted. The trademark Aston Martin grille shape, still in use today, makes its first appearance. Production ends in 1959.
TECHNICAL DATA SPECIFICATIONS #1958
Aston Martin DB MkIII / #Aston-Martin-DB2
Contact Desmond J Smail, Olney, Buckinghamshire (djsmail.co.uk, 01234 240636)
Engine 2922cc, inline six-cylinder, #DOHC
Power [email protected]
Torque 180lb [email protected]
Top speed: 120mph;
Fuel consumption: 18mpg