Aston Martin’s new DBX 707 is a supercar disguised as an SUV
Ever wondered what 007 would drive if he settled down and had children? In the British brand’s latest — the world’s most powerful SUV — we finally have an answer…
Go back two decades and the idea of a performance Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) was, quite simply, preposterous. Until then, if you wanted to go wandering off-road, you bought an SUV and if you wanted to go fast, you bought a sports car. Simple.
But, in 2002, that way of thinking was turned on its head with the arrival of the Porsche Cayenne — a car that blended on-road performance with off-road capability. Now, 20 years later, what was once a niche segment and a curious experiment is now commonplace, with carmakers taking the performance SUV formula to its most extreme. Enter the Aston Martin DBX 707.
And no — that’s not an errant seven disrupting what looks like yet another Bond reference. Instead, the 707 takes its name from the exact number of metric mechanical horses it has pulling it along (which translates to 697 bhp, to be precise). Madness, you say? Correct, but at least there’s some method in it.
Armed with a 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8, the DBX 707 is capable of touching 60mph from standing in just 3.1 seconds, which — to put things in perspective — is precisely 0.1 seconds faster than a Ferrari Roma.
Added to that, it has a staggering 900NM of torque and tops out at 193mph — yet it has five doors, a boot big enough for a dog and weighs 2.2 tonnes. On paper, the DBX 707 shouldn’t work. But, when we took it out on Sardinia’s twisting roads, all became clear.
Those of you who’ve managed to get behind the wheel of the current DBX will know that the power is already plentiful, and that the handling defies its size. Building on some already very solid foundations, the 707 is the more Frankenstein-leaning sibling to the current DBX, with its tweaked underpinnings, honed handling and even more aggressive styling.
Awash with near-empty switchback mountain passes, coastal roads and tracks, the 707 makes short work of a cross-island dash across Sardinia’s road network. Cruising along the coast, the car’s GT mode makes for a tranquil ride with power on tap should you call for it.
Dropping down the gears through the enormous, tactile metal paddles mounted on each side of the steering wheel is the most enjoyable way to experience the full force of the 707’s blistering acceleration. Cycling through the driving modes using a new rotary controller mounted in the centre console, the 707 can switch between everything from GT, to Terrain and Sport+ modes.
The most entertaining setting, of course, is Sport+, which turns the 707 into a rip-roaring brute that surges forward with such force it’s very easy to forget you’re sitting in a high-riding SUV, not a hunkered down super-saloon.
Aside from the 707’s penchant for speed, what’s most impressive is its agility and control through the corners. It’s difficult to make a large car feel nimble and corner flat but Aston’s engineering wizards have come up trumps with the 707, which can be chucked into corners with confidence.
Much of that feeling of control comes from the re-worked chassis, which includes revised, stiffer suspension, dampers and a clever body control system that’s twinned with carbon-ceramic brakes all-round. The result is a very composed and compliant car, which shrugs off its sheer size and weight with ease.
On the design front, Chief Creative Officer Marek Reichman and his team have packaged the performance DBX appropriately. The most notable change is the grille, which has increased by 27% to aid cooling, new stainless steel quad exhausts (to bring all the noise) and more winglets, vents and carbon fibre clad spoilers than you can shake a stick at.
Inside, it’s a pretty similar story to the existing DBX, save for the new seats but still, there’s no touchscreen infotainment system, which is both a little irritating and perplexing in 2022. In all, it’s an exquisite place to sit, as only you’d expect from an Aston Martin and — on the one we drove — all the interior trimmings and creature comforts were present.
So, what’s it going to cost? Aston Martin is asking for £30,000 more than the current DBX’s price tag of £160,000 for the 707, which — all things considered — seems to be a bit of a bargain when compared to the current car.
Yes, it’s still not cheap by any means but taking into account the work and improvements that have gone into the 707 and the idea of opting for the bonkers, speed-freak sibling is hard to resist.
What’s more, is what the 707 represents for Aston Martin. While the brand was arguably the strongest part of the company, its cars and the enjoyment factor of driving them is fast becoming Aston’s greatest selling point. For decades, people have pondered what on earth 007 would drive if he settled down and had children. Now, finally, we have an answer.
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