Aston Martin DBS Volante (2008)

Published: 21 January 2008

Aston Martin will launch a Volante convertible version of the DBS supercar this autumn, CAR Online can reveal.  We’ve snared this prototype cold-weather testing in Scandinavia – and it’s clearly the DBS: it’s lower than the standard DB9 Volante, and shares the DBS’s flared wheelarches, 20in wheels, revised cooling, front splitter, side sills and rear diffuser. Perhaps Aston’s engineers misguidedly believed the layer of snow would act as a disguise.

At a stroke, the DBS Volante will become the fastest open-top Aston on sale. Its hand-built V12 produces 510bhp and its performance shouldn’t be far off the coupe’s 191mph top speed and 0-62mph in 4.3sec. Lowering that canvas roof takes four times longer.

DBS Volante: the inside story

Inside, the soft-top DBS will be festooned with carbonfibre and weight-saving details – it’s everywhere from the door pulls to the optional pared-back seats and special carpet woven with lightweight fibres.

This isn’t the finished car, though. This car has the regular DB9’s grille, rather than the three-dimensional item on the S, and the side strake on the flanks is missing. We’re told this is an early engineering prototype.

Click ‘Next’ below to find out why the DBS soft-top will be James Bond’s next company car

It seems likely that the DBS soft-top will be James Bond’s next car. Aston Martin announced in December that secret agent 007 will drive the DBS for a second time in the next film, whose working title is Bond 22. It will star Daniel Craig as the secret agent and will be released in November 2008 – just weeks after the convertible’s unveil at the Paris Motor Show in September 2008.

Aston Martin DBS: record-breaker

The DBS appeared in the last Bond flick Casino Royale, and grabbed a place in the Guinness Book of Records for the most cannon rolls in a car. Stuntman Adam Kirley rolled the DBS seven times in a stunt at the Millbrook proving ground in Bedfordshire, England.

Aston Martin calls the DBS the stepping stone between the DB9 and the DBR9 track car. CAR calls it a tarted-up DB9 – a great car, but not the standalone Vanquish replacement that Gaydon would have you believe.

By Tim Pollard

Group digital editorial director, motoring news magnet