The 26th produced 1959 Aston Martin DB4 Sports Saloon Registration no. 3514 UG Chassis no. DB4/126/R
Launched at the London Motor Show in 1958, the Aston Martin DB4 emphatically demonstrated that a British manufacturer could better the Italians at their own game when it came to constructing the ultimate Gran Turismo. Classically proportioned and instantly recognisable from the moment of its introduction, the Touring-styled DB4 established a look that would survive, with only relatively minor revisions, until 1970. 'Following in the classic tradition of close-coupled sports saloons, the 3.7-litre DB4 Aston Martin carries orthodox modernity to its highest pitch. A luxurious two-seat saloon which can carry four adults when necessary, it recorded almost 140mph as a two-way mean speed over the measured mile. Yet we were able to record acceleration figures from 10mph in the same gear ratio,' reported The Motor magazine before concluding: 'Performance, controllability and comfort have been combined in the Aston Martin DB4 to make it a highly desirable car: one in which long journeys can be completed very quickly indeed with the minimum of risk or discomfort and the maximum of pleasure.' That the DB4 was able to manifest this rare combination of unrestrained high performance and civilised docility was down to its magnificent engine. A new design by Tadek Marek, the DB4's all-alloy, twin-overhead-camshaft six featured 'square' bore and stroke dimensions of 92mm for a displacement of 3,670cc and developed its maximum output of 240bhp at 5,500rpm. The David Brown gearbox was a new four-speed all-synchromesh unit. An immensely strong platform-type chassis replaced the DB2/4's multi-tubular spaceframe, the latter being considered incompatible with Carrozzeria Touring's Superleggera body construction which employed its own lightweight tubular structure to support the aluminium-alloy body panels. The DB2/4's trailing-link ifs gave way to unequal-length wishbones while at the rear the DB4 sported a live axle located by a Watts linkage instead of its predecessor's Panhard rod. Manufactured between October 1958 and June 1963, the DB4 developed through five series, the first of which had already undergone a number of improvements before the second series arrived in January 1960, a front-hinged bonnet, bigger brake calipers and an enlarged sump being the major changes made. This car is one of the very rare and collectible Series I models, only 150 of which were made, and which is recognised as having the cleanest and purest lines of all the DB4 variants. Furthermore, it is the 26th chassis completed and thus not only has the rear-hinged bonnet but also the frame-less side windows and more delicate bumpers without over-riders that characterise the first 50 cars. '3514 UG' was acquired by the present owner in 2004 and subsequently treated to body and paint renovation (mostly around the front of the car); new headlining (being fitted at the time of cataloguing); and servicing carried out by the owner's resident engineer, a former employee of marque specialists, Aston Engineering. One of the shortcomings of the Series I/Series II models is the lack of an overdrive; this car had one fitted by a previous owner in 2004 during a gearbox overhaul by Four Ashes Garage. Finished in Sage Green with black interior, '3514 UG' is offered with general correspondence, sundry invoices for work carried out, fresh MoT, Swansea V5 and a quantity of expired MoTs. The latter record the mileage in 1976 as 91,549 miles; 1989 as 92,437; 2000 as 92,532; and 2008 as 99,784. The car has covered only a modest mileage since then.