2,922 cc DOHC Inline 6-Cylinder Engine
Triple Weber 40DCOE Carburetors (see text)
Est.195bhp at 5,500rpm (see text)
4-Speed Manual Transmission with Overdrive
Front Independent with Live Rear Axle Suspension
Front Disk and Rear Alfin Drum Hydraulically Assisted Brakes
*Ordered new in California for delivery to London
*Retains the original, matching numbers engine
*One of only 551 DB MkIIIs made
*A beautifully original machine
THE ASTON MARTIN DB MKIII
Although it never featured in a James Bond film, having ceased production years before the franchise commenced, the DB MkIII nevertheless was the Aston Martin driven by '007' in Ian Fleming's novel, 'Goldfinger'. It was also the last Aston Martin produced with the six-cylinder engine designed under the supervision of the great W O Bentley.
Two years after the introduction of the DB2/4 MkII came the DB MkIII - the '2/4' suffix being dropped - 551 of which, mainly saloons, were made between March 1957 and July 1959, 55% of which were exported. Externally the most obvious change was the adoption of a DB3S-style grille, establishing the 'hallmark' look of subsequent Aston Martins, which had been drawn up by Tickford designer, Bert Thickpenny. This restyled nose gives the car a more imposing look, while the interior boasted a redesigned dashboard with instruments grouped in a cowled panel ahead of the driver.
The 3.0-liter engine had benefited from an extensive redesign by Tadek Marek (newly arrived from Austin) and featured, among other improvements, a stiffer block, stronger crankshaft, and a new cylinder head with bigger valves. 162bhp was available with the single-pipe exhaust system, 178bhp with the optional twin-pipe version. Elsewhere there were improvements to both clutch and gearbox; Laycock overdrive became available and front disc brakes were standard rather than optional after the first 100 cars had been built, commencing at chassis '1401'. Despite the inevitable weight increase, the MkIII was faster than any of its predecessors with a top speed of 120mph.
If that still was not enough, customers could opt for a more powerful DBB and (later) DBD 'Special Series' engine. Introduced as an option at the 1958 London Motor Show, the DBD came with triple (sometimes twin) SU carburetors and produced 180bhp or 195 with the twin exhausts. This engine was fitted to 47 cars.
THE MOTORCAR OFFERED
This lovely DB MkIII was ordered new in California. Delivered on August 8, 1958 in Elusive Blue over Blue/Grey Connolly leather, the original owner was recorded as R.J. Morton-Ralph of Santa Monica, California. While the car's owner gave a California home address, he ordered car in right-hand drive and had it delivered new to his London address a short walk from Kensington Palace. A month after delivery, the first service was carried out, fixing (among other things) damage that appears to have been sustained in a theft of the tool kit (which was recorded as having been replaced). Nearly two years later, with 15,032 miles on the car, an extensive service was performed at the Works and it is recorded that the Aston was prepped for shipment—likely to California.
There is no recorded history of the car until December of 1981 when the Aston was acquired by the penultimate owner, Fred Dreier of Corvallis, Oregon. Dreier would keep the car for a subsequent 16½ years before selling it to the current owner in April of 2008. In the 64 years since the DB left the factory, it appears the car has been retained in lovingly original condition. Stored but not run in the current ownership, it is ready for the next owner to mechanically refresh or completely restore as he or she feels fit. When finished, the Aston is sure to provide many happy miles as well as entry to numerous fabulous tours and events.