1961 Aston Martin DB4

Summary

  • Year of manufacture 
    1961
  • Chassis number 
    DB4/780/L
  • Engine number 
    370/806
  • Lot number 
    12
  • Condition 
    Used
  • Location
  • Exterior colour 
    Other

Description

1961 Aston Martin DB4 'Series IV' Sports Saloon
Chassis no. DB4/780/L
Engine no. 370/806

"When the products which are raced bear such a close resemblance to those which can be bought by the public, as do those of Aston Martin, only the most biased can deny the value of racing in improving the breed. It should be no surprise (that the DB4) should be based on an engine which first appeared in experimental form in some of last year's races." - The Autocar, 3rd October 1958.

At its launch in October 1958, the DB4 marked a major turning point for Aston Martin as it was the first car of the David Brown era that neither used a chassis derived from the experimental Atom of 1939 nor an engine designed by Willie Watson. Moreover, it was the first Aston Martin to carry Carrozzeria Touring's 'Superleggera' bodywork, in which light alloy panels were fixed to a framework of light-gauge steel tubes welded to a platform chassis. Although styled by Touring, the DB4's gorgeous fastback coachwork was built under license at Newport Pagnell by Aston Martin, which employed some of the finest panel beaters in the industry. The result was a car whose sleek lines were described as 'unmistakably Italian and yet... equally unmistakably Aston Martin.' The 3.7-litre, six-cylinder power unit was the work of Tadek Marek, and had first been seen at Le Mans the previous year in the DBR2.

Manufactured between October 1958 and June 1963, the DB4 developed through no fewer than five series. However, it should be made clear that the cars were not thus designated by the factory, this nomenclature having been suggested subsequently by the Aston Martin Owners Club to aid identification as the model evolved. The first series had already undergone a number of improvements, including the fitting of heavy-duty bumpers after the first 50 cars, before the second series arrived in January 1960. A front-hinged bonnet, bigger brake callipers and an enlarged sump were the major changes made on the Series II, while the third series featured separate rear lights, two bonnet stays and a host of improvements to the interior fittings. Manufactured between September 1961 and October 1962, the fourth series was readily distinguishable by its shallower bonnet intake, recessed rear lights and new grille with seven vertical bars. The final, fifth, series was lengthened to accommodate more rear legroom and a larger boot, and somewhat lost the sportiness of the earlier series cars.

This left-hand drive 'Series IV' DB4 was delivered new to the J S Inskip distributorship in the USA and first owned by one Edward R Nichold of Barnardsville, New Jersey. The accompanying guarantee form copy records that the car was finished in California Sage with fawn Connolly leather interior trim and that it was fitted with two wing mirrors. The AMOC Register records a subsequent owner in the USA as one D E Harvey.

Now being offered having been on static display, this matching numbers DB4 will naturally require recommissioning before returning to the road. Please also note the car will be subject to EU import taxes should it remain in the EU.