Lot 325A: 1953 Aston Martin DB2 Drophead Coupé
Aston Martin owner David Brown's 1947 acquisition of Lagonda made the latter's W O Bentley-designed, twin-overhead-camshaft, 2.6-liter six available for a new sports car. Announced in April 1950, with production commencing the following month, the DB2 owed much to the Claude Hill-designed DB1, using a shortened and modified version of the latter's chassis and identical suspension. Italian-inspired, the timelessly elegant Granturismo bodywork was the creation of Frank Feeley, and with more power (105bhp at 5,000rpm) and less weight, the sleek DB2 comfortably out-performed its predecessor. From November 1950 a more powerful ‘Vantage’ (LB6V) engine became available as an option. The latter produced 125bhp at 5,000rpm courtesy of a raised compression ratio and bigger carburetors, while the later Vantage unit (VB6B) added larger inlet manifolds to the mix.
Writing in 1952, Autosport's John Bolster enthused: "The DB2 is a very fast sportscar of immense stamina, as a long list of racing successes has proved. (The) model is remarkable for its comfort and luxury, and is also about the easiest thing there is to drive, outside of the 'automatic transmission' carriages." Bolster enjoyed the DB2's outstanding performance, particularly that of the 120mph Vantage version, and remarked on the car's inherent safety and versatility: "Whether one would go shopping, to the theatre, on a long-distance tour, or even race at Le Mans, one could have no more perfect companion than the Aston Martin."
The body of the DB2 afforded its two occupants a generous amount of interior space and the considerable convenience, from the point of view of maintenance and accessibility, of a forward-hinging entire front section. DB2 bodies were coachbuilt in the traditional manner, a situation that resulted in numerous differences between individual examples, most obviously in the treatment of the front grille. A drophead coupé version was announced towards the end of 1950. When production ceased in April 1953, a total of 411 DB2s had been made, 98 of them drophead coupés.
This rare DB2 drophead coupé is one of only a tiny handful built with left-hand drive and the Vantage engine, and is recorded in the AMOC Register. Identical to that featured in Alfred Hitchcock’s classic horror movie The Birds, this car came into the present ownership approximately ten years ago, since when it has always been stored in a heated garage and driven very few miles. We are advised that the body, paintwork and interior were restored soon after acquisition and the engine rebuilt from ‘ground up’ earlier this year. A fine example of one of the rarest and most desirable of post-war Aston Martins, the car is offered with original California Title.
Collectors Motor Cars, Motorcycles & Automobilia|
Bonhams & Butterfields, Larz Anderson Auto Museum, Brookline, MA
|Hammer Price (inc premium)||$114660|
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