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Aston Martin DBX707: A beast of both worlds

By Kap Maceda Aguila

WITH THE RELEASE of the DBX in 2020, Aston Martin formally joined the ranks of luxury marques deigning to put out sport utility vehicle — make that high-performance SUV — models to a global market that can’t get enough of them.

Powered by an AMG-supplied four-liter V8 putting out 500ps and 700Nm, the DBX gets from a standstill to 100kph in 4.5 ticks, on the way to a top rate of 291kph — incredible even by sports car standards.

But at such stratospheric heights in both pricing and performance, more is always more. So, Aston Martin obliged in the form of a souped-up DBX — which also earns a “707” suffix, reflecting the new power rating. Even the torque value gets a bump to 900Nm.

“The DBX isn’t a slouch, but Aston Martin always prides itself in craftmanship and luxury — in addition to having more pace in recent times. When I say more pace, Aston Martin wants to be on par with competitors such as the Lamborghini Urus, Mercedes-Benz G63, the Porsche Cayenne,” said Aston Martin Manila Chairman and President Marc Louie Tagle, in an interview with “Velocity” following the local launch of the DBX707 last Tuesday.

Aston Martin Manila calls the DBX707 “the pinnacle of the segment — with a unique combination of blistering performance, supreme dynamics, unmistakable style and absolute luxury. Engineered with an abundance of character and compelling capability, DBX707 is the ultimate SUV in every respect.”

Though still utilizing the aforementioned 4.0-liter mill, the Aston Martin engineers set about unleashing its full potential — employing ball-bearing turbochargers and “a bespoke engine calibration to liberate more power and torque.” The power plant is now mated to a nine-speed wet clutch automatic transmission, said to be able to manage the increased torque load versus a regular torque converter automatic. The transmission also allows faster gear changes and launch capability. Speaking of which, the DBX707 now boasts a standstill-to-100kph time of 3.3 seconds.

To better corral the vastly improved performance, the DBX707 wears massive carbon ceramic brakes (420mm in front, 390mm in the rear), gripped by six-piston calipers, and yet offer a large reduction in unsprung weight. “The brakes are gigantic, and will stop you on a dime,” underscored Mr. Tagle to this writer. “Aside from the straight-line performance, the suspension has been recalibrated, but isn’t stiff.”

One of the interesting observations about the Aston Martin SUV is that it effectively channels the look of its sedan counterparts. Mr. Tagle affirmed, “Yes, but not in an awkward way. Some brands want their SUVs to approximate their (sedans’) look and they end up looking weird. I may be biased, but for me, it translates. The back of the DBX707 is more of a Vantage, the front is a DBS/Vantage/DB11.”

Affixed up front is a larger front grille (in satin chrome) with double vanes and split horizontal bars to accommodate the increased demand for ventilation as a result of higher performance. A new DRL design is complemented with new air intakes, brake cooling ducts, and a changed front splitter profile.

Windows of the SUV boast dark satin chrome surrounds, and from the side the DBX707 receives a “more heavily sculpted profile” for a “ground-hugging stance.” It also receives soft-close doors.

A new lip spoiler appears on the roof wing to increase downforce even at speed and promote stability. The twin rear diffuser has been enlarged, and it gives emphasis to a new large diameter quad exhaust system.

“The thing with the DBX is that even if the silhouette looks small, when they stop inside, people are shocked at the space. It’s very comfortable. You can fit two six-footers front and back — no problem,” added Mr. Tagle. “It’s really the best of both worlds; it has pace, comfort, and space.”

Declared the executive, “Obviously, with sports cars, use is limited. With an SUV, you can load it up and go cross-country if you want to. It’s more usable.”

With a tag of P33.5 million, the DBX707 clears the garden-variety DBX pricing by almost P10 million. Mr. Tagle explained, “I know there’s a big uptick in price, but once you drive it and you’re a car enthusiast, you’ll understand where the premium goes.”

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