Italian coachbuilder Zagato is responsible for styling some of the most iconic sports cars in history, and its 2003 collaboration between scion Andrea Zagato and Aston Martin’s chief designer Henrik Fisker produced a striking grand touring roadster with elegant refinements and a top speed in excess of 185 mph.
Hand built in England, the DB AR1 – or American Roadster 1 – had a limitedproduction run of 99 cars that quickly pre-sold after a reveal at the Los Angeles Auto Show and a subsequent gallery showing in New York City. Featuring a stunning diamond-tucked leather interior and special Zagato-designed five-spoke alloy wheels, the AR1 looked every bit the part as a bespoke, coachbuilt Italian exotic.
Mechanically, the DB AR1 used a tuned version of the six-liter V-12 engine producing 435 hp, an increase of 15 hp over the Vantage. Coupled with a revised final drive ratio, an active sport exhaust, and an AP twin-plate racing clutch, the AR1 enjoyed a noticeable jump in mid-range power and torque. Acceleration was impressive, with the roadster sprinting from 0–60 mph in 4.9 seconds.
Braking was improved too, with the addition of multi-piston Brembo disc brakes using Pagid RS front pads to provide sustained performance and reduced shudder and fade at high speeds. An uprated Vanquish brake booster assured a firm and consistent pedal feel. The 18" special alloy wheels featured a new offset that widened the car’s track. Combined with low-profile tires, the car had an aggressive stance befitting its impressive performance.
The DB AR1 offered here, numbered 37 of 99, is an extremely handsome example of the roadster. Finished in Tungsten Silver over Light Tan leather, the scheme is emblematic of the Saville Row sophistication unique to Aston Martin. None other than James Bond himself – actor Pierce Brosnan – has put his seal of approval upon this DB AR1, with a discreetly applied autograph inside the lid of the center console.
Showing less than 1,000 miles from new, this DB AR1 is in outstanding condition and represents a rare opportunity to acquire an impeccable, limitededition coachbuilt car from the avant-garde Italian design house. Despite its extremely low original mileage, this car has received a complete factoryauthorized major service as recently as September 2017.
The pairing of Zagato and Aston Martin – two of the most revered names in automotive history – has produced another stunning collaboration brimming with elegance and performance. This DB AR1’s distinguished charms should appeal equally to collectors of Aston Martin, admirers of Zagato, and driving enthusiasts who enjoy high-performance, open-air motoring.