The grand tourer Aston Martin DB7 was first launched in 1994, with production running for 10 years. The prototype DB7 was shown to the world at the Geneva Motor Show in 1993 and was made available in as both a coupe and convertible version.
Whilst the car itself was seen as an entry model the business actually built more than 7,000 cars, making it extremely popular. The DB7 was eventually superseded by the DB9 which has continued to grow in popularity with its sister model, the DBS, being used as the James Bond car in the Daniel Craig films.
The design of the car was based on the Jaguar F Type, with designers Ian Callum and Keith Helfet working on the concept. It was Keith himself who had designed the F Type and worked with Ian in altering the design to fit the Aston Martin market. This type of design was then used in the development of the XK8 and in more recent years we have seen similarities between the DB9 and the latest XK models.
The standard Aston Martin DB7 gave the driver 335 bhp thanks to its 3.5 supercharged straight six engine. The car went on sale in the United States retailing at $140,000 for the coupe model and $150,000 for the volante version. Handling of the car could be improved further for those who wanted to take the car to the extreme, with a special driving dynamics package.
The V12 Vantage model was introduced in 1999 which boasted a six litre, 48 valve, V12 engine. This model was capable of producing 420 bhp. The top speed differed depending on the transmission, with the manual topping 186 mph and the automatic topping 165 mph. 0-62 took 4.9 seconds.
The final version of the car was introduced in 2002 with the V12 GT which boasted an automatic gear attached to an engine delivering 435 bhp, the most powerful DB7 brought to market. The car was designed to be slightly more menacing and sporty with the front mesh grilles and bonnet vents.
Aston Martin remains an iconic British brand, with the cars having featured in a host of James Bond films throughout the years. The Aston Martin DB7 was the stepping stone to the modern age of the DB9 which was seen as one of the most popular cars on the market by the Top Gear team.
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