This was the 16th annual Bonhams Aston Martin Auction, held at what is now Aston Martin Works in Newport Pagnell. In that time it’s grown to be a major fixture in the Aston calendar, as evidenced by the thousands of people on site, and the almost overwhelming number of gorgeous Astons everywhere the eye looked.
The star lot was the ex-Peter Ustinov DB4 Vantage Convertible, a car with a tale or two to tell no doubt, as it soared past the estimate to make £1,513,500 inclusive.
In fact there were almost more mouth-watering DB cars than the brain could cope with, including a DB4 in a stunningly vibrant shade of Deep Carriage Green and too many DB5s to even mention. The DB6 may still be the more affordable – and usable? – alternative, but a lovely Vantage spec one of those made £373,340.
A number of cars and parts from the Marsh Plant racing team went under the hammer, including the brutal ‘Evo 4’ V8 as campaigned by one G. Marshall. Interest, however, seemed surprisingly low.
A Towns Lagonda with very low mileage went for strong money, and a big V8 Vantage with the X-Pack motor looked as potent as ever; an early Vanquish proved that supercar just gets even more handsome with age.
Finally, and perhaps the car that really stole my heart, was a 1971 DBS V8. Finished in Burnt Almond – that’s 70s brown to you and me – and with Natural leather – a deep tan/tobacco shade – it was outstandingly, amazingly original. The paintwork was scarred and blemished, the seats cracked, the wheels corroded and the chrome marked. The ominous crumbs of corrosion underneath it pointed to a serious financial headache lurking in the sills, and it undoubtedly needed lots of work, but I wouldn’t want to change anything about how it looked. It was unbearably cool – and sold for £47,150.