Aston Martin has thrilled auto enthusiasts the world over since 1964, when Agent 007 sped across the silver screen in the now-iconic DB5 in "Goldfinger." That one came with essential secret-agent options like .30-caliber machine guns up front, oil and smoke emitters in the rear, and an ejector seat to dispense with unwelcome passengers.
None of those is available in the brand's top-line DBX crossover, the DBX707, but it does offer amazing skills and thrills and a shipload of high-end but tamer features. First question is, are you comfortable with a price tag of a quarter-mill or more for a midsize crossover?
Aston Martin entered the super-crossover party over two years ago but has upped the ante with this one, named for its 707 metric horsepower (that's 697 hp to you American types). With launch-control at the ready, it faces foes like the Porsche Cayenne GT (which started the craze), Lamborghini Urus, Bentley Bentayga Speed and Ferrari Purosangue.
The first thing to get your head around is a supercar in the crossover market. Of course, the 2023 DBX707 isn't just a crossover: Aston calls it the world's fastest production SUV with 0-60 mph coming in 3.1 seconds. Potent carbon ceramic brakes shed the speed remarkably quick, and adaptive dampers with a 48-volt anti-roll system keep it flat on corners.
It even goes from track to trail with an off-road drive mode. An air suspension system can raise ground clearance by 1.8 inches, or lower it for improved on-road performance.
The 707 has the same exterior design as the DBX, especially from the profile. But it has a larger (by 27 percent) dark chrome grille to suck in extra air for engine cooling, additonal new air intakes and brake cooling ducts. A wider and lower stance combines with new daytime running lights and carbon fiber front splitter to give the front end a more aggressive look.
In the rear, a longer ducktail spoiler provides better downforce, and there's a larger rear diffuser, too. Larger quad exhausts in black look great and deliver the crackles and pops through the gears. Tip to the noise-lovers: Hold either shift paddle while pressing the ignition button for a start-up growl that just feels good and pays back noisy neighbors.
Power comes from the same 4.0-liter twin-turbo V-8 engine as in the DBX (and other Aston models) but with new turbochargers, tuning and electronics. At 697 horsepower and 663 pound-feet of torque, the DBX707 offers 155 more hp over the core DBX and an extra 147 units of torque.
A key piece of the technology, says engineering chief Drummond Jacoy, is a new wet-clutch 9-speed transmission that provides smoother and 30-percent faster shifts.
This crossover is crazy fast: 0-to-100 mph checks in at 7.9 seconds. A new racing launch control rockets the DBX to the quarter-mile mark in just 11.5 seconds at 119 mph. Your head and body will feel the embrace of the well-carved bolstered seats.
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