1969 Aston Martin DBS Vantage – Manual with A/C
Oldtimer Australia is delighted to offer for sale a 1969 Aston Martin DBS Vantage. This particular car is a rare factory right hand drive example equipped with the desirable five speed manual gearbox and air conditioning.
The Heritage Certificate on file confirms this particular example was built on the 22nd August 1969 and despatched on the same day. In the destination section on the certificate it is noted this car was a personal export delivery to Kulili Estates in Madang, Papua New Guinea. It is also noted that this car was built to Australian specification and it was issued with the registration mark CMD 240H under the home delivery export scheme. The colours are noted as silver birch for the exterior and black for the interior, a colour scheme the car still caries today. The Heritage Certificate also confirms this is a matching numbers car where engine and chassis number are matching the production record.
The car was highly optioned and delivered with the following options; vantage engine, power assisted steering, Fiamm horns, air conditioning, two wing mirrors, two headrests, two rear lap belts, a Vozson stereo/radio, Avon radial tyres and Australian specification lights.
This DBS Vantage was delivered under the then popular ‘Tourist Delivery’ scheme and was collected from the factory at Newport Pagnell on the 22nd August 1969.
This car was company ordered and it is understood the first owner was an Australian who was a plantation manager working in Papua New Guinea. After being used for a few months in the UK the car was then shipped to Australia.
The car has had five documented owners from new. In 1981 the car was sold to its second owner. At that time the mileage was recorded as 17,850 miles. The car was previously part of the well known George Hetrel Collection. Hetrel acquired the car in 2008 and used it sparingly throughout his nine years of ownership. This fabulous Aston Martin was sold to the current owners through Oldtimer Australia in August 2017. At that time the mileage was noted as 58,006 miles. The car became part of another significant classic car collection and it was used from time to time.
In the current owners care this car has been regularly maintained it has also had the sills repaired.
Today the odometer reads 59,342 miles which is understood to be genuine.
When you first walk up to the car your first impressions are really positive. The car a real presence about it and silver birch is pretty much perfect on any Aston Martin. The Vantage scripted badges on the front guards are an immediate give away that this is a very special DBS!
The car is a real time capsule and it presents as such. Overall it presents really well. The car, which most likely carries an older repaint, is generally in very good condition. There are a few stone chips and minor blemishes here and there, which is be expected on a car of this vintage. Most noticeable is a chip on the top right of the boot lid near the fuel cap and some wear along the door edges. The boot springs are a known weak point on these cars and they require replacing on this car. The external trim, including the chrome, lights/lenses and the glass is similarly well presented. The wire wheels on the car are in good condition and are currently shod with Pirelli P4000 tyres which are date stamped 4310 (week 43 2010).
The interior, which is most likely original, presents in a similar way to the exterior. First impressions are again really positive, but when you look more closely you do see some imperfections and some sign of wear. In reality, its condition is exceptional for an incredibly original 54 year old car with c59,000 miles on the clock. The front seats do show some patina, but there are no rips or tears. Whilst they do still provide reasonable support, the foam is starting to soften. The same can be said for the rear seats, which have probably had very little use over the years. The door cards, centre console and the dash are all is in good condition. Importantly, the top of the dash is straight and it is not cracked. The carpets are in surprisingly good condition, suggesting they have probably been replaced at some stage by one of the car’s previous owners. All the instruments present well and appear to be in good working order. Even the air conditioning works and blows cold air. We did notice the car no longer has its original radio fitted. At some stage that has been replaced with a Pioneer radio/cassette player.
The car starts easily from cold and fairly quickly settles into a smooth idle. It has a lovely exhaust note that just suits the car. After a very enjoyable test drive we gather our thoughts to reflect on this quintessential British classic. Not usurpingly it is more refined than a DB4 DB5 or DB6, but it is more sophisticated than the later V8 powered cars. In many ways it sits in the Aston Martin pecking order like a Ferrari Dino 246GT does in the Ferrari pecking order. It is not a fast car like its big brothers, but it has adequate performance and it is just a delight to drive. Like the 246 Dino this DBS Vantage just loves the wide open roads and the long road trips. You can enjoy an exciting drive whilst staying within the speed limit at all times.
To summarise, this Aston Martin DBS Vantage is just a fabulous car to drive. The manual gearbox makes the car. The synchros are good and the changes up and down the box are smooth yet precise. The steering is light and direct and the car handles as one would expect. There are no rattles or squeaks from the suspension, even over rough surfaces. The brake boosters have recently been overhauled and the car now stops effectively.
The car has a Heritage Certificate, some historical documentation including a list of owners, its original instruction book, a spare wheel, jack and a hammer.
With DB4, DB5 and DB6 prices at astronomical levels this Aston Martin DBS Vantage surely offers exceptional value for money.
Make no mistake this is a very rare car, particularly in Australia. As a result, it presents a unique opportunity that should not be missed.
- Rare factory RHD DBS Vantage with a manual gearbox and air conditioning.
- Australian spec car.
- Very original car in excellent condition.
- 59,342 miles, which is understood to be genuine.
- Ready to use and enjoy.
Aston Martin has produced bespoke sports cars for over 100 years. The company began in 1913, when founders Lionel Martin and Robert Bamford realised their desire to build distinctive, high quality sports cars that were both exhilarating to drive and a beauty to behold. Martin regularly competed in hill climb races at Aston Clinton, and a simple combination of the name of the event and the driver gave birth to one of the most famous automotive marques. Source: www.astonmartin.com.
Whilst Aston Martin produced some wonderful cars in their early years business, was always a struggle and the company was severely disrupted during both World War I and II. The company went bankrupt on more than one occasion and has endured many different owners throughout its history.
David Brown acquired Aston Martin in February 1947 and the first car produced during his ownership was the Aston Martin 2 Litre Sports, later known as the DB1, which was built in extremely limited numbers from 1948 to 1950. This was succeeded by the Aston Martin DB2 in 1950, which featured a new double overhead cam straight six engine of 2.6 litre (2580 cc) capacity, and was a car that really put post war Aston Martin on the map. The David Brown era was arguably Aston Martin’s finest with the company winning LeMans in 1959 and the sixties producing the legendary DB4, DB5 and DB6 models.
The first of the Newport Pagnell designed cars, the DBS, was introduced in 1967. The DBS was initially powered by Aston Martin’s tried and true 6 cylinder engine as the company’s new V8 engine was not ready.
From September 1967 through until May 1972 Aston Martin produced 829 DBS chassis. One of these was used in a crash test and 26 of these were later fitted with a V8 engine which leaves a total of 802 six cylinder Aston Martin DBS’. Of these 802 cars, 621 were right hand drive and 181 left hand drive. The DBS was available with a five speed ZF manual gearbox or an automatic gearbox or. Interestingly, 317 of the right hand drive cars were fitted with the five speed manual gearbox. It is understood that Aston Martin only built circa 70 right hand drive examples equipped with the Vantage engine.
In September 1969 the DBS was superseded by the DBS V8, powered by the all new 5.3 litre V8 engine which was finally ready for production. The DBS V8 remained in production through until April 1972 and circa 400 cars were built.
- Aston Martin DBS Vantage
- 59,333 miles