1971 Aston Martin DBS V8 Automatic Sports Saloon Registration no. KLW 16K Chassis no. DBSV8/10299/RC Engine no. V540/275
'Utilising many of the design features found in the six-cylinder DB engine, the new vee-8 is only 30lb heavier yet produces 35 percent more power. - Autocar, 2nd October 1969.
Although always intended to house the new Tadek Marek-designed V8, the DBS first appeared with the 4-litre six of the concurrently produced DB6. Styled in-house by Bill Towns, the four-seater DBS employed a platform-type chassis with independent suspension all round: wishbone and coil-spring at the front, De Dion with Watts linkage at the rear. Bigger and more luxuriously appointed than the DB6, the heavier DBS disappointed some by virtue of its slightly reduced performance, but there were no complaints when the V8 arrived in 1969. With an estimated 345bhp available from its 5,340cc, fuel-injected, four-cam motor, the DBS V8 could reach 100mph in under 14 seconds, running on to a top speed of 160mph - a staggering performance in those days and one which fully justified the claim that it was the fastest production car in the world. Even in automatic transmission form the V8 could reach 100mph in around 15 seconds and better 145mph flat-out.
'KLW 16K' was purchased new by Lawrence Vanger & Co of London W1 and left the factory finished in Burnt Almond with natural leather interior, its present colour scheme. The accompanying copy order form also shows that it was equipped with air conditioning, power steering, FIAMM horns and a Radiomobile Voxson stereo/radio. Accompanying photocopies of V5 registration documents (supplied by the DVLA) show that the car was owned subsequently by a Mr Terrence Thomas from Swansea who sold the car to a Dr John Griffiths, also of Swansea, on the 18th January 1988. The car was then sold to a Mr Raymond Martin, again of Swansea, in May 1994 and passed to a Mr Stephen Day in January 2000. The current vendor has owned the Aston since May 2000.
The DBS is believed to be original apart from the rear shock absorbers and the tyres, the latter being a non-standard size but on the standard wheel rims. There is currently a CD player installed, while the 8-track tape player, believed fitted when new, is included in the sale. In addition, the air conditioning system has been converted to R134a gas and one of the brake servos has been replaced. The instruction book and jack come with the car together with a large file of invoices, some service history and a V5C registration document. A total of 109,446 miles is currently displayed on the odometer, and the vendor advises us that the car would benefit from attention to the bodywork, sills, paintwork and rear axle, the latter being somewhat noisy.