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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

23 Search results
Aston Martin DB7
27950 295000 GBP
  • 2002 Aston Martin DB7 Vantage Volante

    £49,950 £49,950

    Aston Martin DB7 Vantage Volante First registered 3/9/02 Finished in Rolls Royce Black Sapphire (special order) with complementing blue hood. Light grey and Atlantic blue bicolour leather interior with carbon fibre trim. 33,500 documented miles with supporting history. Full Aston Martin service history. Tiptronic transmission.

    • Year: 2002
    For sale
    Sussex Sports Cars
    01273 477 778 VIEW CONTACT NUMBER
  • Aston Martin DB7

    POA POA

    Though the memorable styling of the DB7 owed much to the Jaguar XK180 the final look was crafted by in-house designer Ian Callum. Power came from a supercharged, Jaguar-derived straight-six unit of 3.2-litres capacity with some 7,000 DB7s being manufactured. The DB7 was superseded by the DB9. This tidy-looking DB7 hails from 1997 and sports Chiltern Metallic Green paintwork teamed with a Parchment-coloured hide interior that's piped in contrasting Forest Green. Allied to the standard fitment 3.2 litre supercharged straight-six engine and automatic transmission the indicated mileage of 81,500 is borne out by the impressive service record, the book for which contains no less than 16 stamps, 4 at Stratstones Aston Martin, Grays Inn Road London, 10 at HWM Aston Martin, Walton On Thames and 2 at Runnymeade Motor company (Aston Martin specialist). Offered with its original book pack, handbooks and collection of invoices plus 2 keys and fobs the vendor currently classes the engine, manual transmission, bodywork, paintwork and interior trim as `very good' and is offered with an MOT certificate into December 2017. These cars are amazing value in today's market.

    • Year: 1997
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7 Volante convertible

    £32,850 £32,850

    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! This Volante convertible automatic is rather special having Alfred Dunhill upgrading including split rim alloys.

    • Year: 1998
    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 Vantage

    £32,950 £32,950

    Registered 2002 Mileage 49,970 miles Engine Size 5.9l Transmission Automatic Fuel Type Petrol Fuel Consumption 11.9 mpg Registered 2002 Registration RV52OEY Previous Owners 4 Fuel Consumption 11.9 mpg Tax Band K Tax Cost £305 Colour Silver Interior Trim N/A Exterior Colour Skye Silver Doors 2 Fuel Type Petrol Bodystyle Coupe Mileage 49,970 miles Engine Size 5.9l Transmission Automatic MPG figures are obtained from laboratory testing and intended for comparisons between vehicles. They are unlikely to represent real world efficiency. Left Right Tailor Your Finance Vehicle Features Warranty Technical Spec Tailor Your Finance Vehicle Features Fitted Options Satellite Navigation System Facia Trim - Walnut Front and Rear Parking Sensors Air Conditioning Will come freshly serviced by

    • Year: 2002
    • Mileage: 49970 mi
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7

    £70,000 £70,000

    Aston Martin DB7 5.9 Volante Rarely Do Opportunities Of This Great Importance Become Available For Sale In The Aston Martin Modern Day Classic World, However We Have Managed To Secure One Of The Finest DB7 Volante Models, To Which Will Serve As An Important Car For Any Professional Or Amateur Car Collector Or Collection Stronsay Silver Fast Track, The Car Was Acquired In September 2004 By The Only Keeper Registered To The Vehicle And Since This Point Has A Remarkable Mileage Reading Of Just 4543 Miles From New. However Even With The Lack Of Usage, The Car Has Been Maintained To The Highest Of Standards, With Aston Martin Service Logs At 67, 1610, 2204, 2508, 3254, 3468, 3643, 3859 & 4084 Miles, With The Last Carried Out By Chichester Aston Martin In August 2016. The Car Is Presented For Sale In Unmarked Stronsay Silver Fast Track With With Light Grey & Charcoal Leather Sport Seats Detailed With Light Grey Twin Needle Stitch Detail, Charcoal Black Carpets And Beautifully Presented With Walnut Internal Veneers. The Factory Build Card Includes The Options Of Black Mohair Fabric Electric Convertible Roof, Exterior Chrome Door Releases, Grey Embossed Brake Calipers, Heated Front Screen, Aston Martin Satellite Navigation System, Power Fold Exterior Mirrors, Variable Heated Front Seats, Integral Telephone Preparation, Unmarked 18" Ten Spoke Alloy Wheels Which All Sit On Branded Tyres, Charcoal Leather Bound Steering Wheel, Smoke Alcantara Headlining, Bright Silver Front Grille, Electric Seat Adjust, Red Push Button Start And So Much More. An Exceptional Car Presented With A Complete Booklet Pack Set, A Fully Cleared Hpi Report And The Entire Key Set. For Additional Details And To Discuss Your Own Personal Requirements Please Contact Either Jonathan Or Mark On 01623 622627. Worldwide Shipping Available Upon Request - £70,000

    • Year: 2004
    • Mileage: 4493 mi
    • Engine size: 5.9
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7

    £39,995 £39,995

    Aston Martin DB7 5.9 V12 Vantage A True Modern Day Classic Aston Martin With The Rare Manual Box, Only 2 Keepers From New And Finished In This Beautiful Colour Combination, Presented With An Impeccable Aston Martin Service & Aston Martin Specialist Inventory From New. Finished In Grigio Titanio Special Order, Becoming Very Rare And Even More So When The Service History Includes Visits With Aston Martin At 85, 1617, 5199, 9939, 11132, 14842, 20048, 25510, 28550, 32615, 34799, 37464, 38894, 40612 & 42395 Miles. The Car Is Offered In The Out Of Range Ferrari Grigio Titanio Grey With Embossed Claret Red Leather Sport Seats Detailed With Red Twin Needle Stitch Work, Claret Red Carpets, Claret Red Leather Dash & Beautifully Finished With Factory Carbon Fibre Interior Inlays. Build Items Include Air Conditioning, 18" Ten Spoke Alloy Wheels Which All Sit On Branded Tyres, Variable Heated Front Seats, Embossed Aston Martin Steel Pedal Set, Electric Front Seating, DB7 Steel Door Plaques, Three Spoke Obsidian Black Leather Steering Wheel, Tailors Grey Suede Roof Lining, Bright Silver Front Grille, Twin Exhaust System With Sport Back Boxes, Embossed Black Calipers, Becker/Aston Martin Sound System With Multi Change CD System, Red Push Button Start, Xenon Headlights, Remote Central Locking With Alarm & Vehicle Tracking System, Electric Windows & Mirrors And So Much More. This Exceptional Two Keeper Car Also Boasts The Entire Booklet Packs, Is Fully Hpi Cleared And Comes With A Full Key Set. For Further Details On This Remarkable Find, Then Please Contact Either Jonathan Or Mark On 01623 622627. We Can Also Offer Options To Deliver Anywhere In The UK, With Full Written Quotations Available Upon Request - £39,995

    • Year: 2001
    • Mileage: 42885 mi
    • Engine size: 5.9
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7

    £39,995 £39,995

    ASTON MARTIN DB7 5.9 VOLANTE. Presented For Sale In Remarkable Condition, Very Sensible Low Mileage And An Extensive History File Which Shows That This Very Special Modern Day Classic Aston Martin Has Been Well Cared For From New Braemar Blue Metallic, An Excellent Investment With An Impressive Service Log To Include Visits At 93, 2955, 4556, 6329, 9503, 15045, 19077, 24359, 29150, 32727, 35833, 37869, 41665, 44468, 47421 Miles, Along With Further Important Service Invoices For Future Records. This Rare Two Private Keeper Car Is Offered For Sale In Braemar Blue Metallic With Embossed Two Tone Ivory & Pacific Blue Leather Hide, Pacific Blue Carpets, Two Tone Ivory & Pacific Blue Leather Dash And Beautifully Finished With Burr Walnut Internal Veneers. Factory Fitted Options From New Include Blue Fabric Electric Convertible Roof, Air Conditioning, 18" Ten Spoke Aston Martin Alloy Wheels Which All Sit On Branded Tyres, Vehicle Tracking Devise, Optional Front & Rear Park Distance Control, Four Spoke Black Leather Bound Steering Wheel, Red Push Button Start, Blue Leather Roof Cover, Indoor Car Cover, Aston Martin Steel Pedal Set, Embossed Sill Plaques, Embossed Black Brake Calipers, Variable Heated Seats, Electric Seat Adjust, Alpine Sound System, Electric Windows & Mirrors, Remote Central Locking, Bright Silver Front Grille And So Much More. A True Delight To Have This Car Available On Our Web Page, So To Offer Your Interest, Then Please Contact Either Jonathan Or Mark On 01623 622627. We Can Also Offer Great Options To Deliver Nationwide, With Full Costs Available Upon Request - £39,995

    • Year: pre 1900
    • Mileage: 47643 mi
    • Engine size: 5.9
    For sale
  • 265 - 1999 BMW Z3M Coupé

    POA POA

    When the director of design at BMW first saw the coupé version of the Z3, there was a long silence, not least because this was 'mocked-up' by a handful of dedicated designers during evenings and weekends. Like the GT6 and MGBGT, two acknowledged influences, this wasn't just a convertible with a hardtop. The entire chassis was redesigned, the roof lengthened, more power added (obviously) and finer, under the skin details, like cooling fins on the differential. The engine is the same 3.2 litre unit from an M3, an almost absurd amount of horsepower per unit weight. With over 6,000 miles of testing at the Nürburgring, you can be sure this is well tested and up to the task of shifting you and a friend up to a (limited) 155mph and back down again equally quickly, all within the confines of BMW's legendary build quality. This muscular sportscar presents well in striking Dakar yellow with a contrasting black Nappa leather interior. It is fully covered with a BMW factory alarm system and comes with specified extras such as the 'non-smoker package', a BMW Business CD/RDS and Harman Kardon stereo and air conditioning. Importantly, it only has one owner recorded and has been kept garaged durin

    • Year: 2017
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7 i 6 VOLANTE

    £47,995 £47,995

    About this Aston Martin DB7 i 6 VOLANTE The DB7 i6 is based on a semi-monocoque shell with composite materials used for some outer panels; it is powered by a 24 valve light alloy six cylinder in-line 3,228 cc engine derived from the Jaguar AJ6 coupled with a Eaton Roots type Supercharger and Zytec electronic fuel injection. The power developed was a claimed 335 bhp at 5,600 rpm with a peak torque figure of 368lb.ft at 3,000 rpm. Typically 18 inch alloy wheels shod with 245/40 ZR18 Bridgestone Tyres provide contact with the road at each corner mounted on an independent wishbone suspension system that is coupled with coils springs and monotube dampers. Braking is provided by outboard Telvis anti-lock disc brakes. First registered May 1998 (R Reg) this two owner rare Manual transmission DB7 i6 Volante was built towards the last of quartile in the production of the six cylinder cars. Presented in immaculate Solent Silver with Grey Leather and Blue Hood this very low mileage example, just 19,800 miles has had just two owners from new. Originally supplied in Paris to its first keeper the Service History shows three stamps with Lancaster Sevenoaks and a further three stamps with an Aston

    • Mileage: 19800 mi
    For sale
  • Aston Martin DB7 GTA V12

    £47,950 £47,950

    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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