1970 Aston Martin DB6
- Year of manufacture1970
- Car typeOther
- Lot number115
- Exterior colourOther
The DB6 Mk II was launched in July 1969 and by that time 1,327 DB6's had been produced, making it by far the highest volume model manufactured by Aston Martin. Mechanically, the DB6 Mk II was little changed from its predecessor, however, power steering now came as standard and the clutch plate was changed to a larger version. Additional changes included a new option of a Brico electronic fuel injection system. Claimed to have been developed over 7 years, 46 cars were built using this system all with chassis prefix DB6Mk2FI.
Cosmetically, wider DBS style Avon tyres were incorporated and to accept these new tyres distinctive flared wheel arches were added to Mk II bodies. Interior design was also modelled on the DBS cabin and they were the last interiors designed by William Towns, who left Aston Martin in 1968. Production of the DB6 Mk II was phased out after only 240 saloons, 71 with Vantage power, were manufactured. However, just 38 Mk.II Volantes and only 17 with manual gearboxes ever left the factory which is why they're regarded as extremely rare and collectable in Aston Martin circles. With a high level of specification including power hood, power steering and more supportive seats, they are also an easy and very comfortable car to drive in comparison with the equally rare Short Chassis Volantes.
A factory build sheet confirms that chassis number VC/3776/R was first registered on 13th May 1970 to H.R. Owen Limited of Old Brompton Road, London. It was purchased in 1975 by Maloney and Rhodes who sold the car to a Mr Gray of Cambridge. In October 1980 Mr Gray sold the DB6 to an enthusiast well-known in Aston Martin circles, Michael Hedley-White. He owned and maintained the car for 11 years and sent his cherished car to be restored by Aston Martin Works in 1981, having now covered some 76,000 miles since new - where a new speedo fitted post-restoration. The sills and body were completely stripped and rebuilt, a new hood supplied and the engine rebuilt. All bills and receipts can be found in the history file along with correspondence between Mr Hedley-White and the factory. In total, a little more than £20,000 was spent on this restoration, which is a huge sum of money when you consider that at that time a DB4 GT regularly changed hands for around £12,000.
In 1991 the car was sold to Peter Jackson of Tonbridge and then again, via Paradise Garage, in November 1993.
John Barnard, the famous Formula One designer, purchased the Aston Martin from them. John was credited with the introduction of carbon fibre composite chassis and the McLarens he designed took 31 wins with his time at the team from 1980 to 1986. He then joined the Ferrari F1 team for 1987 and pioneered the semi-automatic gearbox. A spell at Benetton for 1990-92 saw Barnard bring them race winning chassis and he was persuaded back to Ferrari in mid 1993 - naming his own terms and seemingly rewarding himself with the Volante at this very time. John was to keep his beloved Aston Martin for the next 16 years.
Acquired directly from John by the 'Stradale' Collection some five years ago, it was felt that this model epitomised the very best of Aston Martin engineering from its era. As if to confirm the quality of chassis number VC/3776/R, a letter from Aston Martin Works dated 9th October, 1991 to Mr Jackson states: "We are delighted to know that quite one of the very best MK II Volantes has found such a good new home". The history file also boasts an extensive correspondence section between owners and the factory, which further supports the service and MoT records that detail the total and mileage of 36,345 miles covered since the 1981 factory rebuild.
Finished then in Tourmaline Blue with completely original black leather interior, this Mk II Volante has been treasured by its five former keepers and unusually, has a detailed and documented history spanning most of its life. Very few Aston Martin's boast such exceptional provenance, exclusivity and early factory maintenance. Silverstone Auctions are honoured to be selling such an important piece of Aston Martin history - immortalised when Prince William drove his new Bride to their wedding reception in his father's example, which was his 21st birthday present from her Majesty the Queen.