Lot 140

London 2018

1963 Aston Martin DB5


£550,000 - £700,000 GBP | Not Sold

United Kingdom | London, United Kingdom



Chassis No.
Engine No.
Cancelled Italian Libretto
  • Restored to as-new condition, with original engine, gearbox, rear axle and keys
  • Fitted with Webasto sunroof
  • Cover feature in Ruoteclassiche magazine’s December 2015 issue

The DB5 is one of few cars that needs no introduction. Made famous by the 1964 James Bond blockbuster Goldfinger, the DB5 is considered by many to be the epitome of Aston Martin’s most famous era.

Lifted straight from the silver screen, the Aston Martin DB5 is virtually identical to the DB4 Series V Vantage driven by Bond. Aston Martin maintained the Superleggera bodywork designed by Touring of Milan, which called for lightweight aluminium panels attached to a tubular frame. The smaller 15-in. wheels that had been introduced on the Series V were retained, as were the separate rear lights. A slight change was made to the rear of the hood in order to streamline the tail into the boot for a more elegant shape. Although the spy gadgets were removed for production, the DB5 was fitted with plenty of stylish extras and upgrades.

Under the bonnet, the DB5 packed a lot more power than the previous model. The major mechanical upgrade was the inclusion of a 4.0-litre engine, which increased power output to 283 bhp and helped the DB5 achieve a top speed of 143 mph. While the original production run offered a five-speed ZF gearbox as an optional extra, this shortly became standard, as did power windows, an alternator and exhaust silencers. Other standard equipment included reclining seats, wool pile carpets, twin fuel tanks, chrome wire wheels, an oil cooler, full leather trim in the cabin and a fire extinguisher. Fast, luxurious and elegant, it is easy to see why James Bond looked so at home in an Aston Martin DB5.

A year before Mr Bond debuted his silver spy saloon, the beautiful DB5 offered here was produced. According to the British Motor Industry Heritage Trust Certificate on file, DB5/1350/R was delivered to Brooklands of Bond Street on 20 November 1963. Finished at a key point in DB5 development, chassis no. DB5/1350/R was one of the first cars fitted with David Brown’s five-speed ZF gearbox – this had only become standard from chassis 1340 onwards. The Heritage Certificate also records the original colours, Dawn Blue over dark blue upholstery – and the DB5 still retains this original and stunning colour scheme.

According to previous owners, this DB5 arrived in Italy in 1988, where it was retained by an entrepreneur from Cremona who used the DB5 sparingly. In the early 1990s, the owner moved to South Africa and had chassis 1350 put into storage at a local garage where it remained until 2013, noting less than 100,000 miles on the odometer. Recently purchased by the current owner from a collector residing in Bergamo, Italy, who had previously owned a Silver Birch example, the DB5 was assessed for a restoration. While the chrome and mechanics were in excellent condition, the interior was tired and new paint was needed.

Not wanting to go partway, the owner undertook a full two-year restoration, with bodyworks carried out by RS Car Classic of Modena and mechanical work handled by Fratelli Colombo of Milan. By 2015 the DB5 looked perfectly new, including the believed to be period-installed Webasto sunroof, many of which were installed at the factory post-delivery.

In excellent mechanical and physical shape, including a beautifully detailed undercarriage, and gorgeously presented in its original colours, this 1963 Aston Martin DB5 comes with pictures and invoices of the restoration. As on the button as any driver could want, this is the perfect car for any owner who is looking for a touch of that super-spy lifestyle.