By putting such distance between it and the DB9 in price and name alike, while mentioning it in the same breath as its Le Mans class-winning DBR9 racers, Aston Martin has made promises about the DBS that it has difficulty honouring at times.

However, none of this makes it a bad car or even, once you’ve figured it out, a disappointing one.

Matt Saunders Autocar

Matt Saunders

Road test editor
More of a DB9S than a standalone model

The DBS is, if you like, the optimal DB9, a touring car that’s been honed to have a sharper edge but whose natural environment remains the open road, not the mountain pass. It won’t thank you for an hour’s abuse on a race track; nor will it be comfortable with being hurled down a narrow B-road.

It will, however, prove a faithful, charming companion on a fast cruise over long distances, bring bags of V12 character, an extravagant cabin and ride quality that is right up there with anything north of £100k.

In truth, calling this car the DB9S and charging £30,000 less for it would have reflected its positioning and abilities with much greater accuracy and resulted in a more positive outcome from this test. Even so, with time and miles it soon becomes clear that it is, in fact, Aston’s greatest GT to date.

Find an Autocar car review

Explore the Aston Martin range

Driven this week

Find an Autocar car review

Explore the Aston Martin range

Driven this week