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2012 Aston Martin DBS

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2012 Aston Martin DBS Review

Luxotic hits the sweet spot.

Reviewed by Automotive on

In seemingly every exotic automaker's lineup these days, there's a car that's set apart from the rest. For Aston Martin, it's the 2012 Aston Martin DBS. It's a harder, faster, more uncompromising sports machine that takes the sporting appeal of the brand just that little bit higher.

Weighing in some 200 pounds lighter than the DB9, but with 510 horsepower from a massaged 6.0-liter V-12 engine, the DBS is engineered to hammer from 0 to 60 mph in 4.2 seconds, hit almost a full g on the skidpad, and slow from 60 to 0 mph in just 107 feet. Impressive stuff.

Both six-speed automatic and manual transmissions are available for the 2012 Aston Martin DBS. Inside the cabin, aluminum and carbon fiber niceties abound, including a Bang and Olufsen premium audio system. The DBS is highly styled inside and out, and balances sporty and luxurious accents seamlessly. If you're into high-performance luxury cars, or Aston Martin, this is the top of the range, and should be considered by anyone shopping the segment.

The Range

Body style: Coupe, convertible
Engine: 6.0-liter V-12
Transmissions: Six-speed manual, six-speed automatic
Models: Coupe, Volante, Carbon Black

What's New

The 2012 Aston Martin DBS receives a revised stability control system, helping the wheels find traction when all 510 of the 6.0-liter V-12's horses are at full gallop. The Volante convertible returns with a uniquely styled trunklid and 13-speaker sound system from Bang and Olufsen. Aston Martin is readying a single-clutch automated manual gearbox.


Available as a convertible or the coupe, the 2012 Aston Martin DBS, with its six-point grille, is easily recognizable as an Aston Martin. The DBS is highly styled and catches the eye very easily. Xenon headlights, LED taillights, and 20-inch wheels are all standard. Lightweight 20-inch wheels are an option. The convertible Volante features an automatically folding soft top. A uniquely styled trunk-lid is one of the accents that help separate the DBS styling from other Aston Martins.


As with most Astons, fine leather, rich wood and aluminum are plentiful inside the DBS. The driver and passenger seats are comfortable with ample legroom, though the passenger seat is not height-adjustable. The 700-watt stereo features Bluetooth and iPod connectivity, and an MP3 jack. Navigation and a Bang and Olufsen stereo are optional. At about $300,000, there's no reason to skip options that should already be standard.

Performance & Handling

The 2012 Aston Martin DBS achieves its performance without much compromise from the driver. Steering is responsive, even a light foot on the gas pedal will send the DBS into aggressive acceleration. Despite being the British automaker's fastest and finest automobile, the DBS delivers an ample amount of comfort while the drive doesn't suffer. The suspension is firm but not harsh, carbon-ceramic brakes haul the DBS down from speed time and time again, and the V-12's growl is, well, intoxicating. Of course, James Bond wouldn't have it any other way.


The 2012 DBS includes antilock carbon-ceramic disc brakes, dual-stage driver and side airbags as standard equipment, as are stability and traction control. Front and rear parking sensors are standard equipment, and automatically deployed rollover bars are standard on the Volante model in the event the convertible winds up on its head.

EPA Fuel Economy

DBS 6.0-liter V-12; manual: 12 mpg city/18 mpg highway
DBS 6.0-liter V-12; automatic: 11mpg city/17mpg highway

You'll Like

  • Ferocious acceleration
  • Tenacious grip
  • Slippery body styling
  • James Bond approved

You Won't Like

  • $300,000 sticker price
  • Still more GT than sport

Sum Up

Luxotic hits the sweet spot.

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