Two of my favorite cars of all time are the Porsche 959 and the AMC Eagle (even more so in SX/4 guise), so I’ll have to admit to being a little giddy when I first saw pictures of the Aston Martin DBX. I mean, what’s not to love about an all-wheel-drive Aston Martin coupe with plenty of ground clearance? Defying conventional Aston Martin logic even further, the DBX is also the first suggestion of an all-electric vehicle from the Gaydon-based automaker.

At this point, there’s no clue what Aston Martin has in mind for the DBX Concept, but with high-lux automakers like Bentley, Maserati, Lamborghini and Rolls-Royce all getting in on (or at least considering) the SUV segment, the DBX would be a unique way for Aston Martin to join the party without angering brand loyalists too much. There is also the chance that the design is a styling exercise hinting at a future production performance grand touring car, or it’s just a way to bring Aston Martin into the EV conversation. All are possibilities, but only time will tell which, if any, proves to be true.

Continue reading to learn more about the Aston Martin DBX Concept.

Exterior

With the exception of its raised ride height, it isn’t too far of a stretch to imagine how the cues of the DBX Concept could look in real life. In fact, combine the elements of this concept with that of the DB10, and we might be getting a glimpse at the future design language of Aston Martin. The styling starts off with an evolution of the current lineup of Aston Martin sports cars with an enlarged version of the brand’s signature grille, which is flanked by a set of narrow headlights, and all of this forms the leading edge for the long, sculpted hood. The big fender vents, upward-swinging doors and full-width taillights are still in place as well.

The more fascinating aspect of the DBX is its roofline, especially with regard to the machined aluminum trim that starts at the A-pillar and runs all the way back to the rear fender. The floating C-pillar obscures Aston Martin’s character beltline, and it creates a taller visual height for the car. Overall, the DBX Concept’s tall and sporty theme ends up looking like a mix of the Lagonda Concept SUV and the James Bond-ified DB10. Not a bad combination if you ask me.

Interior

As expected, the interior of the Aston Martin DBX is exactly what you should expect from a high-end concept vehicle. Every inch of the DBX’s 2+2 cabin is covered in a rich “velvet-like” Nubuck leather… even the accelerator and brake pedals are covered in this material! What isn’t covered in leather is made of the same machined aluminum found on the outside of the concept. As nice as the materials are, they are no match for the tech goodies that the DBX is equipped with, which includes a panoramic roof with auto-dimming smart glass, cameras in place of exterior door mirrors and a heads-up display for both driver and front passenger.

Drivetrain

Few details were provided about the drivetrain of the Aston Martin DBX, but there is enough to paint a clear picture of what type of EV Aston Martin is looking to create. For starters, the system uses in-wheel electric motors at each wheel to provide all-wheel drive, and power is supplied by a lithium sulfur battery. No word yet on what sort of power output to expect from this system, but it should definitely live up to the performance for which Aston Martin is known. A key indicator of this is the fact that the DBX is also equipped with carbon ceramic brakes that utilize a kinetic energy recovery system (KERS). The only other drivetrain-related information about the DBX Concept is that it uses a drive-by-wire steering system.

Competition

Tesla Model X

2012 Tesla Model X Concept High Resolution Exterior
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Just mentioning the idea of an all-roading, all-electric vehicle, and the Tesla Model X is the first thing that pops into my head. Although there is still no clear timeline as to when the Model X could be brought to production, it will very likely be the first electric SUV to hit the market. As much as Tesla has shaken up the luxury market with the Model S, the Model X is delving into the higher-volume utility vehicle segment, bringing with it the same level of technology and styling for which Tesla is known. Aside from its zero-emission powertrain, the Tesla Model X will stand out from other SUVs with its top-hinged, “Falcon wing” doors.

Lamborghini Urus

2012 Lamborghini Urus High Resolution Exterior
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Just based on styling alone, the Lamborghini Urus is another outside-the-box performance utility vehicle that has been conceptualized in recent years. The Urus, which first broke cover in 2012, looks exactly what I would expect a Lamborghini SUV to look like… at least one that isn’t named LM002. There hasn’t been any news for some time regarding the fate of the Urus, so it still is not clear if the platform underpinning the Bentley Bentayga, Audi Q7, Volkswagen Touareg and Porsche Cayenne will be getting another variant. Unlike the Model X and the DBX, the Lamborghini Urus runs on pure, honest-to-goodness gasoline, but there could be some hybridization that plays into the mix.

Conclusion

If Aston Martin is willing to take a risk and build the Cygnet city car or the ultra-limited-production Lagonda Taraf, maybe – just maybe – there is a chance for a production version of the DBX. For now, though, all Aston Martin CEO Dr. Andy Palmer is saying about the DBX Concept is that it “is, clearly, not a production-ready sports GT car, but it is a piece of fresh, bold thinking about what Aston Martin GT customers around the world could request of us in the future.”

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    • * No promise for production
    • * Limited rear seat space

Press Release

Aston Martin today challenges the nature of luxury GT travel in the 21st Century with the debut at the 85th Geneva International Motor Show of the innovative DBX Concept.

2015 Aston Martin DBX Concept High Resolution Interior
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Created to defy conventional thinking about the luxury GT segment, the DBX Concept widens the appeal of the iconic British luxury brand and reaches out to a more diverse global audience than ever before.

Unveiling the concept, Aston Martin CEO Dr Andy Palmer said: “The DBX Concept is a challenge to the existing status quo in the high luxury GT segment. It envisages a world, perhaps a world not too far away, when luxury GT travel is not only stylish and luxurious but also more practical, more family-friendly and more environmentally responsible.

“I asked my team at Aston Martin to expand their thinking beyond conventions, to explore what the future of luxury GT motoring would look like in years ahead, and the DBX Concept you see before you is the result.”

Dr Palmer added: “This is, clearly, not a production-ready sports GT car, but it is a piece of fresh, bold thinking about what Aston Martin GT customers around the world could request of us in the future.

“The DBX Concept is more than a thought starter for us and for our customers, though. We will, in due course, be entering a car into the new DBX space and I am very much looking forward to seeing how this concept is received not only here today, but also by our legion of existing loyal customers and by those potential customers around the world who have, to this point, yet to consider one of our cars.”

2015 Aston Martin DBX Concept Interior
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Harmonious design

Imagined by Chief Creative Officer Marek Reichman and his team at the brand’s global headquarters in Gaydon, Warwickshire, the all-electric DBX Concept showcases not only cutting edge engineering but also a major evolution of the British brand’s world-renowned and highly-regarded design language.

Clearly signalling an extension to the brand’s existing model lines in the future, the all-wheel drive DBX Concept seamlessly combines traditional Aston Martin beauty with elegant new engineering that gracefully aligns form and function.

Capable of accommodating four adults in comfort, the DBX Concept also majors on day-to-day practicality. It offers generous luggage capacity by virtue of the fact that its rear trunk and forward load bay can both accept passengers’ belongings.

Opulence and cutting edge style go hand-in-hand in the DBX Concept thanks to a unique fusion of high luxury and advanced technology. These characteristics, allied to the ingenious use of unconventional materials and finishes inside and out, are calculated to further broaden the appeal of Aston Martin.

The concept’s exterior bright work emphasises the brand’s approach to the use of authentic materials, and is made up of machined billet aluminium with visible milling lines in a piece of exquisite craftsmanship intended to be seen as the car’s jewellery. The DBX Concept’s unique paint finish – Black Pearl Chromium – has been specially created to mimic the look of a genuine black pearl, and comprises a micro-fine layer of chrome to deliver a level of reflectivity that cannot be obtained through normal paint finishes.

2015 Aston Martin DBX Concept High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Inside, the deliberate use of non-automotive standard materials generates a uniquely soft, cocooning ambience. The extensive application of velvet-like Nubuck leather contrasts with the concept’s hard, hi-tech equipment. The exposed leather reveals a sandwiched accent layer, more akin to high-end furniture, while the car’s interior bright ware matches that of the exterior with the addition of a gold ‘pin striping’ element on the edging.

Marek Reichman explained: “The exceptional craftsmanship, with detailing more typically seen on luxury consumer goods or fine jewellery, gives the DBX Concept genuinely global appeal.”

Experimental engineering

Embracing the very latest engineering techniques and theories, the DBX Concept needs no engine compartment thanks to its use of electric, inboard-of-wheel, motors powered by lithium sulphur cells.

Drive-by-wire electric steering, toughened glass with an auto-dimming ‘smart glass’ inter-layer, and bespoke driver and passenger head-up displays are further examples of its cutting edge technology.

Active LED exterior lights, carbon ceramic brakes with a kinetic energy recovery system (KERS) and rear view cameras in place of conventional mirrors also underline the mould-breaking nature of this luxury GT concept.

2015 Aston Martin DBX Concept High Resolution Exterior
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Dr Palmer explained: “A concept car such as this should, in my view, challenge conventional thinking and explore the art of the possible. In the DBX Concept, I believe we have created a new type of luxury car that can not only broaden the appeal of Aston Martin to a whole new generation of customers, but sit with pride alongside the rest of our range.”

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