Upgrade programme for the grand tourer could yield a new name to reflect the model’s overhaul.
The Aston Martin DB11 could be renamed DB12 amid an extensive mechanical and technological overhaul, a new trademark filing has suggested.
The British firm last week applied to trademark ‘DB12’ with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, for use on passenger cars and racing cars, toy and model cars and video games.
Aston Martin said in a statement supplied to Automotive Daily Network partner Autocar: “Aston Martin regularly files international trademark applications to protect names for possible future use.”
New images captured by spy photographers show the updated DB11 testing on road and track, wearing a revised front fascia that appears to be inspired by the DBR22 speedster shown in August last year.
Although it is otherwise a clear continuation of the existing DB11, which arrived seven years ago, the new version promises to be a modern proposition under the skin.
Company chairman Lawrence Stroll previously said it will be more like an “all-new” car, bringing upgraded engines, gearboxes, suspension and, most importantly, an overhauled interior.
“How can you have an Aston Martin that sells for £150,000 (AUD$275,000) with three-year-old technology?” Stroll asked early last year, referring to the ageing Mercedes-Benz-derived trackpad system the DB11 has used since launch.
An agreement with Mercedes-Benz meant Aston Martin could only use the German firm’s technology once it had been used in Mercedes models for three years – “a silly thing the previous management agreed to”, according to Stroll.
He confirmed that the new car will get a touchscreen infotainment system, differentiated from Mercedes’ tech by “our own faces, our own voices – a proper English accent”.
The choice between V8 and V12 models is likely to remain, with both subject to substantial revamps. The V12 was recently uprated to 558kW for the swansong DBS 770 Ultimate, thanks to a 7% bump in turbo pressure and ignition tweaks.
Aston Martin product and marketing boss Alex Long told Autocar the V12 is “synonymous with the brand”, adding it has “a huge emotional connection for the customers”.
The eight-pot is likely to be the upgraded version of the M177 unit found in the new Mercedes-AMG SL 63, which raises the potential for outputs of 424kW. For reference, the current DB11 V8 produces 388kW.
That a test mule was previously captured wearing 305-width rear tyres – 10mm broader than those fitted to the existing model – hints at a power uplift substantial enough to require the additional rubber.
The smaller Aston Martin Vantage will receive a similar suite of upgrades, whereas the closely related DBS will be withdrawn from sale once the 770 Ultimate’s 499-car run – 300 coupés and 199 convertibles – is complete.
This is part of a move to ramp up sales of its front-engined sports cars to 4000 units per year, Stroll explained. “That is the true consumer demand,” he said when confirming the round of updates was inbound.
Hinting at how radically evolved the new cars will be, Stroll told reporters: “You’ll be very impressed with the all-new ‘front engines’ next year.”