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Aston Martin DB7: Buying guide and review (1994-2003)

Aston Martin DB7: Buying guide and review (1994-2003) Classic and Performance Car
Aston Martin DB7 side profile Aston Martin DB7 interior Aston Martin DB7 engine
The Aston Martin DB7 is a car to polarise opinions. Devotees will tell you that it was the first Aston truly dependable enough to be driven every day, the first you could leave out in the street and be sure it would function in the morning as, say, a Porsche would. It was also the first Aston built with modern high(ish)-volume methods to proper, consistent quality standards, and it sowed the seed of the company Aston Martin has since become. 
 
Today a DB7 can seem almost irresistibly cheap for a car with those looks and that badge, never mind the pace potential. You can buy one for as little as £16,000. So how can you lose? 
 
With more than 7000 examples sold worldwide, the DB7 represented a new beginning for Aston Martin. It realised the ambition of Victor Gauntlett for a volume model that would draw on the enduring legacy of the DB4 and secure the company’s future. 
 
Ford’s purchase of Aston Martin, followed rapidly by Jaguar and coupled with the astute chairmanship of Walter Hayes, would bring this vision to reality. Jaguar contributed a heavily reworked XJ-S platform – known as XJ41. Tom Walkinshaw’s TWR Group assumed engineering development and manufacturing responsibility at the former XJ220 plant at Bloxham, with the Kidlington workshop building the complete engine. 
 
Under the bonnet was an AJ16 Jaguar straight-six engine, which gained an Eaton supercharger to help extract 335bhp from the 3.2-litre capacity, and while the XJS-derived platform was clearly dated, having first appeared 19 years before the DB7’s 1994 launch, it did the job. 
 
The stunningly evocative styling was by Ian Callum and the DB7 was launched, with the blessing of company life president Sir David Brown, at the 1993 Geneva motor show. A powerful part of its appeal 19 years after launch is that it was the car that saved the company. 
 
The DB7 was also the first (and last) Aston Martin with a steel monococque structure, although it did add some newer bodywork technology with its heat-pressed composite front wings and bootlid. Early cars had composite bonnets, too, but the panel gaps proved both inconsistent and heat-relatedly mobile, so later cars had a steel panel. 
 
So there’s not as much bespoke Aston Martin in a DB7 as a purist might like. The ‘Jag in drag’ references of the time are a bit harsh, though, because even the Jaguar-derived parts had Aston-specific calibration and development, and a DB7 looks like a proper Aston both outside and in. 
 
It’s better to think of the DB7 as a new beginning, as the starting point for today’s company with its Gaydon factory and the V12 engine, which began life in 1999’s DB7 Vantage. 
 

Which DB7 to buy? 

 
The DB7 was made in bigger numbers than any Aston before it, with 2451 six-cylinder cars leaving the factory before the V12 replaced them and took production to its 2003 end. In total, 7091 DB7s were built, including Volante convertibles. Today’s Aston production rate, however, far eclipses those figures. 
 
Now that the DB7 is coming out of its wilderness years, this means that really good ones can be worth more than commonplace early DB9s and V8 Vantages. 
 
Because a DB7 is more exclusive than the Jag XK8 rival, it looks sleeker and, perversely, its imperfections now take on the aura of a classic car’s character. Besides which, a six-cylinder one handles beautifully and goes with great verve, although the more common (75 per cent of production) four-speed automatic with the engine detuned to 317bhp might not be a petrolhead's cup of Earl Grey and is worth around 20 per cent less. 
 
Or there’s the V12, initially with 420bhp, later with 435 as the Vantage GT; it’s very quick and sounds wonderful, the GT especially covetable with its mesh grille, bonnet vents, shorter gearing, uprated brakes and keener handling. Manuals are more common with this engine at around 40 per cent of production. Although early cars were never the the most accomplished drivers' cars, the last-of-the-line Vantage GT is a much improved proposition – something that is reflected in the price. 
 
The Aston Martin DB7 was also the basis for a couple of special Zagato-bodied cars. Just 99 standard coupe versions were built, as well as 99 AR1 models. AR1 actually stands for America Roadster 1, due to being exclusively offered in the USA, although obviously a handful made it to other countries. 
 

Performance and specs 


Engine  In-line six-cylinder, 3228cc, supercharged
Power 335bhp @ 5750rpm
Torque 361lb ft @ 3000rpm
Transmission Five-speed manual/four-speed automatic
0-62mph 5.8sec
Top speed 157mph
Insurance group   20
Price when new £78,500
 

Dimensions and weight

 
Wheelbase            2591mm 
Length 4631mm
Width 1820mm
Height 1238mm
Weight 1650kg
 

Common problems

 
• A full and detailed service history is a very nice thing to have, because infrequent oil changes can clog the hydraulic timing-chain tensioner in the otherwise very durable straight-six. The rattly chain that will eventually develop is pricy to replace. 
 
• The V12 is also a very reliable engine on the whole, and it was the first appearance of an engine that has remained in production to this very day. There are a couple of things to look out for though, one of which is the engine's occasional habit of breaking down one of the 12 individual coil packs. This is generally due to heat and age, causing misfires. It's often easy to miss on a test drive, as even on 11 cylinders the Aston Martin remains smooth and refined. As they are hard to get at, replacement can be expensive – so proof of recent replacement  (of all 12) by a specialist, although generally not always necessary is always a bonus.
 
• Have a good look underneath, where rust can take hold – more likely in a V12, oddly, because cost-cutting led to less protection. Front floorpans, inner wings and suspension turrets, rear radius-arm mountings and rear chassis legs are the trouble spots. Getting the car on a ramp is the best way to see everything, and it will pay in the long run to get a car with no structural issues.
 
• Although much easier to spot, you should also be on the look out for the beginnings of rust on the the wheelarches and door bottoms. Another possible area for concern is the bottom corner of the rear window aperture, which can make an otherwise nice example look scruffy.
 
• Look in the service history for checks of the suspension’s fully adjustable alignment, too; the tyres wear quickly if it’s out, while the car will not feel planted on the road. 
 
• You’re unlikely to find an original composite bonnet on an early car because most have been replaced with a steel one. As well as the gap problems, a composite panel goes porous if its outer layer is perforated and bubbles duly appear. 
 
• The six-cylinder DB7’s boot-mounted badge can trigger this, which is why the V12 doesn’t have one. 
 
• On the steel panels, rear wheelarch lips and the bottom corners of the rear window aperture are worth a close check. 
 
• The sumptuous interior is durable and high in quality, but try the air-con because blockages can blow the evaporator apart if the car isn’t used regularly. Fixing this involves removing most of the interior. 
 
• Damp carpets could be from a failed windscreen-to-scuttle seal. 
 

Model history 

 
1993: DB7 makes debut at Geneva
1994: First customer cars delivered
1996: Volante launched
1999: V12 Vantage replaces six-pot DB7
2002: Run-out DB7 on sale (GT, GTA); Zagato launched (delivered 2003)
2003: Zagato Vantage Volante, DB AR1, unveiled; 99 made. Final DB7s built.
 

Owners clubs, forums and websites

 
• www.amoc.org – Aston Martin Owners' Club
• www.amocna.org – Aston Martin Owners' Club North America
• www.astonmartinworks.com – Aston Martin Works 

Summary and prices

 
‘Any six-cylinder DB7 worth having will start at around £25,000,’ cautions Derek Campbell, MD of the Chiltern Aston Centre. ‘Any less than this and you must have it inspected thoroughly. Provenance and how it has been looked after are vital. And low-mileage, manual cars are worth the most.’ 
 
At the other end of the scale, late Vantages can nudge £50,000, especially if it’s the open Volante version or the final, limited-run GT. And if you find one of the 99 Zagato-bodied versions, you'll encounter a price tag in excess of £200,000. 
Aston Martin DB7 side profile Aston Martin DB7 interior Aston Martin DB7 engine
Last updated: 4th May 2017
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Aston Martin DB7 cars for sale

16 Search results
Aston Martin DB7
23850 295000 GBP
  • 2002 ASTON MARTIN DB7 VANTAGE COUPE

    $49,500(£36,714.15) $49,500(£36,714.15)

    --Special order Jaguar Regent Grey with Charcoal over All-Saddle Tan with Charcoal carpeting, 16,000 miles from new, Touchtronic transmission. Factory options include: Carpet Piping, Factory Mesh Upper and Lower Grilles, Premium Audio System, Aluminum Pedal Pads, Sport Exhaust with Large Bore Tailpipes and Maple Veneer. All alloy four cam 6.0 liter V-12 developing 420 bhp @ 6000 rpm and 400 ft. lb. of torque @ 5000 rpm. 0-60 in 5.2 seconds with a top speed of 165 mph. This DB7 Vantage Coupe is well known to Autosport Designs and has been serviced by us for several years. In the most recent past is has received its annual service. It is currently being fitted with new tires and will receive a 4-wheel alignment to start fresh in its next ownership. In excellent condition throughout with factory books, tools, extra keys and remotes. This DB7 Vantage Coupe is ready for immediate use.

    • Year: 2002
    • Mileage: 16000 mi
    For sale
    Autosport Designs Inc
    (631) 425-1555 VIEW CONTACT NUMBER
  • Aston Martin DB7

    £24,990 £24,990

    Full Leather, Air Conditioning, Rain-Sensing Wipers, Xenon Headlamps, Electric Seats, Heated Seats, Sports Seats, ABS, Air Bag, Quick-Clear Screen, Colour Coded Body, CD Player, Radio, Electric Mirrors, Electric Windows, Alarm, Anti-Theft System, Central Locking, Remote Alarm, Remote Central Locking, Adjustable Steering Column, Power Steering, Traction Control, Trip Computer, Auto-dip Rearview, Metallic Paintwork, Rear Spoiler, Front Fog Lamps POSSIBLY THE PRETTIEST ASTON MARTIN EVER MADE,LAST OWNER HAD THE CAR FOR 14 YEARS AND MAINTAINED IT TO A VERY HIGH STANDARD REGARDLESS OF COST.WE HAVE A FOLDER FULL OF BILLS SHOWING ALL THE WORK CARRIED OUT OVER THE YEARS.THE CAR HAS JUST HAD NEW BRAKES AND DISCS FITTED AND COMES WITH A BATTERY CHARGER.VIEWING THIS CAR IS A MUST

    • Mileage: 70000 mi
    • Engine size: 3239
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7 i6 Saloon

    £29,995 £29,995

    Chassis Number: SCFAA1118WK102191 Engine Number: AM1/0602024 UK Registration Number: R 606 KPG Date of first reg: 18th May 1998 Exterior colour: Mendip Blue Hood: Interior colour: Pacific/Parchment Current Odometer reading: 61,263 Mileage Warranty: Steering: Right Transmission: Automatic Options: Background Background: Launched at the Geneva Motor Show in March 1993, the DB7 was scheduled to follow the DB6 (now there’s a surprise), but because of marketing it was the DBS and we had to wait for 27 years for the DB7 to appear. Originally, it was the brainchild of Victor Gauntlet, who first suggested a new smaller Aston Martin in 1990. Production was to be sited at a new factory in Milton Keynes. However, the advent of the Ford Motor Company not only provided funding but also the dynamic Walter Hayes. Code-named DP1999, development of the new car was charged to Rod Mansfield, Engineering Director. In 1993, at the invitation of Walter Hayes, Sir David Brown became life president of Aston Martin Lagonda Ltd. This provided the perfect opportunity to revive the DB prefix. The new production was established at Bloxham, near Banbury and Aston Martin Oxford Ltd was born. Chassis number seque

    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7 coupe auto

    £23,850 £23,850

    The name of Aston Martin resonates throughout British automotive history and is one of the true legends. The DB7 is the famous Ian Callum design which effectively saved Aston Martin and put it where it is today. Own a part of the story!

    • Year: 1995
    For sale
  • 2000 Aston Martin DB7 Vantage

    £33,950 £33,950

    DB7 Vantage Year 2000 Engine size 5935 Doors 2 Colour Malvern Silver Interior Parchment over Charcoal leather and carpets Mileage 52000 Transmission Automatic Full service history print this Ref: 00537

    • Year: 2000
    • Mileage: 52000 mi
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7 Zagato - 86 of 99

    £295,000 £295,000

    Engine Size 5.9l Mileage 5,600 miles Previous Owners 4 Bodystyle Coupe Seats 2 Transmission Manual Exterior Colour Bower Blue Interior Trim Parchment A wonderful, low mileage example of the stunning Aston Martin DB7 Zagato, produced towards the end of the production run of just 99 cars in 2003. Finished in stunning Rolls Royce Bower Blue with Blue and Parchment semi analine hides and mahogany veneers. Having covered just 5,800 miles from new by its former enthusiast owners and having been very well maintained on an annual basis at Aston Martin main agents, this car is in wonderful condition throughout. Supplied with various Zagato accessories that were supplied with the car when new including the custom car cover and Zagato book and an extensive history file that documents order communication and original bill of sale documentation Aston Martin and servicing and maintenance records since new. With the DB7 Zagato model now attracting attention from the collector car audience, this is an opportunity to own one of the very best examples. Supplied with a fresh service, pre delivery inspection, MOT and 12 months warranty. If the car is to remain in the UK, the sale can include a distinc

    • Year: 2005
    • Mileage: 5600 mi
    For sale
  • 2000 Aston Martin DB7 vantage volante

    £41,950 £41,950

    Aston Martin DB7 Vantage Volante Year 2000 Engine size 5935 Doors 2 Colour Mendip Blue Interior Parchment piped blue with blue mohair hood and blue carpets Mileage 60000 Transmission Automatic Full service history print this Ref: 00534

    • Year: 2000
    • Mileage: 60000 mi
    For sale
  • 2001 Aston MArtin DB7 vantage volante

    £41,950 £41,950

    Aston Martin DB7 Vantage Volante Year 2001 Engine size 5935 Doors 2 Colour Silver blue metalis Interior Black leather, carpets and black mohair hood Mileage 52000 Transmission Automatic Full service history print this Ref: 00535

    • Year: 2001
    • Mileage: 52000 mi
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7 VANTAGE

    £29,995 £29,995

    About this Aston Martin DB7 VANTAGE In 1999, the powerful DB7 V12 Vantage was introduced at the Geneva Motor Show. The new Vantage model featured an all new 5.9 litre V12 engine which produced an amazing 420bhp. The engine came with a choice of a 6 speed manual gear box or a 5 speed automatic gearbox. Aston Martin claimed that the automatic model had a top speed of 165 mph, and would accelerate from 0–60 mph in 4.9 seconds. This particular car has low mileage along with excellent service history with 12 stamps in the service book, 10 of which are from a main Aston Martin dealership. This car also comes in the favoured Mendip Blue. The latest generation of 'Classic' Aston Martin and still available at a reasonable price level.

    • Mileage: 51600 mi
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7 3.2

    £24,995 £24,995

    About this Aston Martin DB7 3.2 Looking superb in the rare combination of Brecon Black with magnolia hide which is complimented by graphite five spoke alloys. Serviced no less than 24 times with 16 Main Agent and supplied with a folder of service history and old MOT Certificates. Complete with spare keys, the original book pack and even old tax discs surely this is an opportunity not to be missed - DB7s will not remain at this price level for long!

    • Mileage: 71000 mi
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7 i6 Coupe

    £24,995 £24,995

    About this Aston Martin DB7 i6 Coupe Mr David Brown described the Aston martin as “a car for the discerning owner with fast touring and maybe competition in mind” because when you add performance to elegance, Aston Martin is the only answer. The DB7, known internally as the NPX project, was made mostly with resources from Jaguar and had the financial backing of the Ford Motor Company, owner of Aston Martin from 1988 to 2007. The DB7's platform is an evolution of the Jaguar XJS’s, though with many changes. The DB7 was engineered in Kidlington, Oxfordshire. This example in arguably the best colour combination of British Racing Green with Parchment leather piped in green has covered 86500 miles and has an exceptional service history with no less than 14 Main Dealer service stamps. Although the DB7 now has true classic status with rising values to match, it now represents about the only affordable way into classic Aston Martin motoring. A true investment.

    • Mileage: 86500 mi
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7 VOLANTE

    £38,995 £38,995

    About this Aston Martin DB7 VOLANTE The Aston Martin DB7 is a grand tourer which was produced by Aston Martin from September 1994 to December 2004. The grand tourer was available either as a coupé or a convertible. The prototype was complete by November 1992 and debuted at the Geneva Motor Show in March, 1993; the car was styled by Ian Callum and Keith Helfet. In 1997 amongst other things, Airbags were introduced and the rather annoying self arming alarm was replaced making in our view the 1997-1999 variants the most desireable. The DB7 offered today is the right side of these modifications and is finished in the Limited edition colour combination of Montrose Blue with Parchment Hide interior. The service history is documentation is comprehensive with with no fewer than 17 Main Dealer stamps and a further 5 Specialist. Supporting invoices detail completed works and there are 11 old MOT certificates. Fitted with all usual extras with the added benefit of a Tracker System for security. These prices are going up in front of our very eyes and therefore present a surefire investment for the discerning motorist.

    • Mileage: 57000 mi
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7 GTA V12

    £44,950 £44,950

    Chassis Number: SCFAB12353K 304219 Engine Number: AM2/04182 UK Registration Number: Y 1 GTA Date of first reg: 10th November 2003 Exterior colour: Ferrari Grigio Titanio Hood: Interior colour: Charcoal Leather Current Odometer reading: 52,579 Mileage Warranty: Steering: Right Transmission: Touch Tronic Options: Heated Front Screen, Satellite Navigation, Alloy Wheels, Tracker Background Background In 1993, at the invitation of Walter Hayes, Sir David Brown became life president of Aston Martin Lagonda Ltd. This provided the perfect opportunity to revive the DB prefix. The new production was established at Bloxham, near Banbury and Aston Martin Oxford Ltd was born. Chassis number sequence begins at: 100,001. Code named NPX, the new design was subjected to far more development testing that any previous Aston Martin. Approximately 30 prototypes were driven in some of the most diverse areas in the world. From the altitude and heat of Arizona to the intense cold of Scandinavia. Also full use was made of Ford’s own test facilities. The body is a semi-monocoque shell with composite materials used for some of the outer panels. The designed by Ian Callum captures the very essence of ‘Aston M

    For sale
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