Left-hand drive 1968 Aston Martin DB6 'MkI' Volante Convertible Chassis no. DBVC/3676/L Engine no. 400/3442
While the introduction of the DB6 in 1965 represented the final development of the six-cylinder 'DB' series that had commenced with the DB4, it also marked the first use of the evocative 'Volante' name, which has been used for soft-top Aston Martins ever since. Although Royal patronage of the marque undoubtedly helped DB6 sales, the car arrived at a difficult time for Aston Martin, with the home economy in a parlous state and the US market subject to ever-more restrictive legislation.
Though recognisably related to its Touring-styled DB4 ancestor, the DB6 abandoned the Superleggera body structure of its predecessors in favour of a conventional steel fabrication. Despite this change, Touring's Superleggera badges continued to be applied to bodies until stocks ran out! The wheelbase was now 4" (100mm) longer than before, resulting in an extensive restyle with more-raked windscreen, raised roofline and reshaped rear quarter windows. Opening front quarter lights made a re-appearance, but the major change was at the rear where the presence of a Kamm-style tail, complete with spoiler, acknowledged the increasing importance of aerodynamic downforce in sports car design. 'The tail lip halves the aerodynamic lift around maximum speed and brings in its train greater headroom and more luggage space,' declared Motor magazine, concluding that the DB6 was one of the finest sports cars it had tested.
The Tadek Marek-designed six-cylinder engine had been enlarged to 3,995cc for the preceding DB5 and remained unchanged. Power output on triple SU carburettors was 282bhp, rising to 325bhp in Vantage specification. Borg-Warner automatic transmission was offered alongside the standard ZF five-speed gearbox, and for the first time there was optional power-assisted steering. The stylish DB6 Volante convertible offered four-seat accommodation and was generously appointed, featuring leather upholstery, deep-pile carpets, an aircraft-style instrument cluster and an electrically operated hood. After 37 Volantes had been completed on the DB5 short-wheelbase chassis, the model adopted the DB6 chassis in October 1966, first appearing in its definitive form at the London Motor Show. Between 1965 and 1970 when production ceased a total of 1,575 DB6 saloons was completed. During this time the factory made only 140 of the long-wheelbase Volantes and today these rare cars are among the most sought after of David Brown-era Aston Martins.
This left-hand drive DB6 Volante has the desirable ZF five-speed manual-transmission and is finished in blue metallic with matching hood and grey leather interior. The car was purchased by the current owner from Movendi in Cologne, Germany in July 2002. Its previous history is not known, though the AMOC Register (2000 edition) lists the owner at that time as 'U Obrecht (Switzerland)'. A keen Aston Martin enthusiast and owner of a number of modern examples, the vendor has kept the Volante garaged in winter and used it only during summer months. General servicing, including replacement of the water pump, has been carried out by a local specialist. The car is offered with German Fahrzeugbrief and an illustrated condition/valuation report, running to over 70 pages, compiled for the vendor by Ing. Klaus Kukuk in April 2010. In addition, there are bills on file from Roos Engineering (issued prior to the vendor's purchase) dated 1983 onwards including one for 100 hours of engine work in 1993.