Car Enthusiast - click here to access the home page


 



First drive: Aston Martin DBX707. Image by Max Earey.

First drive: Aston Martin DBX707
The new 707 is more than just a high-performance DBX.

   



<< earlier review     later review >>

Reviews homepage -> Aston Martin reviews

2022 Aston Martin DBX707

5 5 5 5 5

The Aston Martin DBX doesnít want for much. Itís a luxurious, fast and spacious SUV that gets 550hp from its thunderous V8 engine. But with the new DBX707, Aston Martin has turned the DBX up a notch, providing more power and more performance, as well as some performance-orientated styling tweaks. But do the upgrades make sense, or is the transition to super-SUV a step too far for Astonís 4x4?

Test Car Specifications

Model tested: Aston Martin DBX707
Pricing: From £189,000
Engine: 4.0-litre turbocharged V8 petrol
Transmission: nine-speed automatic, all-wheel drive
Body style: five-door, five-seat SUV
CO2 emissions: 323g/km
Combined economy: 19.9mpg
Top speed: 193mph
0-62mph: 3.3 seconds
Power: 707hp
Torque: 900Nm
Boot space: 638 litres

What's this?

In essence, this is the car the Aston Martin DBX was always supposed to be. A new deal with Mercedes-AMG meant the engineers were finally given free rein to modify the DBXís 4.0-litre V8 petrol engine. So with an air of glee, they set about fitting new, larger turbochargers with low-friction bearings and modifying the gearbox. A new clutch went in, offering 40% faster gear changes and launch control, while a stainless steel quad exhaust was also bolted on.

The result is a massive increase in power compared with the standard DBX. Where that car produces 550hp, the new DBX707 pumps out 707hp (hence the name) and sends that to the road via a nine-speed automatic gearbox and an updated active differential, which is essentially designed to send more power to the rear wheels and improve the DBXís handling.

With a 0-62mph time of just 3.3 seconds and a top speed of 193mph, the DBX707 goes straight in as one of the fastest and most powerful SUVs in the world, competing with the Lamborghini Urus and Porsche Cayenne Turbo GT.

To cool that ultra-powerful petrol engine (not to mention the brakes, gearbox and all-wheel-drive system that go with it), Aston Martin has had to make big changes to the front end of the car. The grille has grown massively and the daytime running lights have shrunk, giving the car more chance to suck in air like some kind of four-wheeled basking shark.

But extra cooling comes at a cost. The larger grille has increased drag, so Aston Martin has been forced to add some new aerodynamic features to maintain the same coefficient of drag as the standard DBX. These include new skirts, new vents and a new spoiler, as well as underbody aerodynamics and fins to direct air to wherever the engineers want it.

Yet thereís one key thing the designers have shied away from doing. Were this a Porsche or BMW, the engineers would have immediately set about lowering the suspension to reduce the size of the hole the DBX707 punches through the air. But Aston Martin hasnít bothered, choosing instead to maintain the DBXís off-road capability. Only when the car is in one of its sportier driving modes will it hunker down to sit lower than the standard DBX.

All this has had a profound effect on the carís design, and if the standard DBX was divisive, the new DBX707 looks even more Marmite-ish. But while the exterior will split opinion, the interior is less likely to cause arguments.

The cabin is more or less identical to that of the 550hp DBX, with an identical dashboard and instrument display, as well as a very similar infotainment system. The centre console is a little different, thanks to the drive mode selector thatís surrounded with extra buttons to tune individual components, including the suspension and engine note. Other changes include some new cupholders, but as theyíre being introduced across the DBX range in response to ďcustomer feedbackĒ thatís a minor change.

The only major change, therefore, is the seats, which are now more supportive and designed to keep you in place when youíre throwing the car around. But having so few changes allows you to enjoy the same amount of interior and boot space as the standard car. And thatís a good thing, because the DBX is a pretty practical thing. The 638-litre boot might only be slightly larger than that of the Lamborghini Urus, but neither is exactly poky, while the DBXís slightly less slanted roofline means it has marginally more rear headroom. And solid legroom means seating four adults wonít be a problem for DBX707 owners.

How does it drive?

At risk of stating the obvious, the DBX707 is outrageously fast. The 3.3-second 0-62mph time isnít just enough to lunch other SUVs, but itís also enough to leave supercars in your wake. And while it doesnít feel quite as neck-breakingly fast as those figures suggest, it certainly isnít slow. The acceleration is more than capable of forcing you back into that beautifully stitched seat, and the V8 sounds absolutely wonderful as it girds its loins.

But the DBX707 is more than just fast in a straight line. As well as squeezing more power from that engine, Astonís engineers have also had their way with the chassis, putting new damper valves in and tweaking the suspension calibration to improve the carís body control. And although the front suspension is stiffer than before, thereís a new hydrobush to improve damping and overall comfort.

At the same time, Aston Martin has retuned the centre differential to send more power to the rear wheels and make driving more fun, but still send power to the front when itís needed. The steering has been tweaked, too, and massive carbon-ceramic brakes lurk behind the similarly massive wheels. Even the stability control system has been designed for maximum driver enjoyment.

All that results in a truly spectacular super-SUV. The Urus is impressive, but itís so capable that it almost feels like a video game. The DBX707, on the other hand, feels more natural and more communicative. The body still leans a little, giving you more feel for whatís going on, and the steering has a little more feedback to it. The turn-in is sharp and the rear-biased all-wheel-drive system allows you to adjust the car mid-corner using the throttle.

But for all this fabulousness, the DBX707 doesnít sacrifice comfort in pursuit of handling perfection. The car has been designed to remain roughly as comfortable as the standard car, but with a little more body control. Even as you climb the driving modes, the car doesnít get any less supple ó it just pitches and rolls a little less. The result is something dramatically more comfortable than a Lamborghini Urus.

Verdict

On paper, the DBX707 is simply a faster version of the standard V8-powered DBX. But thatís only part of the story. This car offers a greater breadth of capability, mixing the qualities of a spacious grand tourer with a luxury SUV and a high-performance sports car. Perhaps it isnít a traditional Aston Martin, but in terms of all-round ability itís probably the best Aston Martin. Whatís more, itís also one of the best performance SUVs on the market.


4 4 4 4 4 Exterior Design

4.5 4.5 4.5 4.5 4.5 Interior Ambience

4.5 4.5 4.5 4.5 4.5 Passenger Space

4.5 4.5 4.5 4.5 4.5 Luggage Space

0 0 0 0 0 Safety

4 4 4 4 4 Comfort

5 5 5 5 5 Driving Dynamics

5 5 3.5 5 5 Powertrain


James Fossdyke - 13 Apr 2022



  www.astonmartin.co.uk    - Aston Martin road tests
- Aston Martin news
- DBX images

Aston Martin DBX707. Image by Max Earey.Aston Martin DBX707. Image by Max Earey.Aston Martin DBX707. Image by Max Earey.Aston Martin DBX707. Image by Max Earey.Aston Martin DBX707. Image by Max Earey.

Aston Martin DBX707. Image by Max Earey.Aston Martin DBX707. Image by Max Earey.Aston Martin DBX707. Image by Max Earey.Aston Martin DBX707. Image by Max Earey.







 

Internal links:   | Home | Privacy | Contact us | Archives | Old motor show reports | Follow Car Enthusiast on Twitter | Copyright 1999-2022 ©