1990 Aston Martin V8
Year of manufacture1990
Number of seats2
Offered from the estate of the late Peter Phillips
1990 Aston Martin V8 Volante Convertible
Registration no. G303 DPK
Chassis no. 15837
'It's not by any means the world's most expensive drophead in production (the Corniche costs an extra £23,000) nor is it quite the quickest, though a Porsche Cabrio would have to be very well driven to get away from it, but the Aston Martin Volante is perhaps the greatest. It is a true sports car which is also luxuriously comfortable.' - Fast Lane.
Aston Martin had always intended the DBS to house its new V8 engine, but production difficulties meant that the car first appeared with the DB6's 4.0-litre six. Bigger and more luxuriously appointed than the DB6, the heavyweight DBS disappointed some by virtue of its slightly reduced performance, but there were no complaints when the V8 finally arrived in 1969. With an estimated 315bhp available from its 5,340cc 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.
After Aston Martin's acquisition by Company Developments in 1972, production resumed with the Series 2, now known as the Aston Martin V8 and distinguishable by a restyled front end recalling the looks of earlier Astons. The most successful Aston Martin ever, the V8 survived the changes of ownership and financial upheavals of the 1970s, enjoying a record-breaking production run lasting from 1969 to 1988, with 2,919 cars sold.
Described by former Aston Martin Chairman Victor Gauntlett as, 'a stylish thoroughbred, beautifully built, luxurious, fast and immensely safe,' the V8 was built in several variants, one of the more exclusive being the Volante convertible. Introduced in response to customers' demands for such a car, the Volante first appeared in June 1978. Arguably the ultimate in soft-top luxury, the newcomer boasted a lined, power-operated hood which, when erected, endowed the walnut embellished interior with all the solidity and refinement associated with the saloon version. Although its open-car aerodynamics meant that top speed suffered with the hood down, the Volante's 150mph maximum nevertheless ranked it among the world's fastest convertibles. V8 Volante and Vantage Volante chassis numbers ran from '15001' to '15849', a total of 849 cars.
Chassis number '15837' comes with copies of original factory paperwork showing that it was ordered via HWM by their customer, name of Reedman. The Aston was ordered in Rolls-Royce Balmoral Green with dark green-piped Magnolia interior, and registered as 'G303 DPK'. The Volante seems to have been supplied to the customer's personal order, as the AML Parts & Service Chassis Update sheet records the following extras/comments:
Boot carpet in dark green
Fitted luggage in dark green
Vantage type suspension
Vantage wheels and Goodyear Eagle tyres
PoW specification wheelarches Brass plaque
Green car cover
Raised centre armrest with sunken switch panel
Peter Phillips purchased the Volante from Stratton Motor Company in 2010, since when the car has been maintained by Stratton's. 'G303 DPK' has covered only some 27,000 miles from new and is presented in generally good condition, its engine running beautifully. Although not used for the last 18 or so months, the car has been started regularly and been stored in a modern purpose-built car storage barn commissioned by Peter Phillips. Accompanying documentation consists of sundry service bills, an expired MoT (2017), a V5C Registration Certificate, and the aforementioned copy factory paperwork.