The Aston DBS’s styling is, in essence, a ‘DB9 and a bit’ - with add-ons such as the carbonfibre front splitter, neat carbonfibre door mirror mounts and a rear diffuser (yep, carbonfibre too) to make you feel like you’ve got value for the extra cash. The end result is clearly derivative but still not without appeal – and it’s helped further by huge 20in alloy wheels, the best-looking items available on any Aston Martin product.

If anything, the Volante looks even better. Its folding cloth roof looks great up or down. By using fabric, rather than a folding hard top, Aston's engineers have managed to keep the weight increase down to 115kgs. And a bulky rear end isn't required to store it, which given Aston's reputation for building pretty cars, is a very good thing.

Steve Sutcliffe

Editor-at-large
Low seating position and steeply raked A-pillars restrict forward visibility, but for a supercar the DBS isn’t too bad

Both models have a bonnet, boot and front wings constructed from carbonfibre. Aston Martin uses a patented process to apply a 200 micron-thick layer of epoxy glue to the surface, before painting, to prevent the carbon weave protuding through the paintwork.

As well as the bulk of its looks, the DBS inherits both its bonded aluminium chassis and its 6.0-litre V12 from the DB9. But both are tuned to suit its more extreme ends. The engine gains a bypass in its inlet port to allow it to breathe more easily at high revs, while the ports themselves have been reshaped to improve the flow of air into the engine.

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The chassis has also been substantially revised. It benefits not only from bespoke spring and anti-roll bar settings but also a wider track and, most importantly, adaptive dampers that are capable of switching automatically between five different settings in the car’s Sport and Comfort modes.

The brakes are not only carbon-ceramic rather than steel but also colossal (398mm in diameter at the front compared with just 355mm on a DB9).

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