Aston Martin has made an art form of dining out on yesterday’s reheated dinners, and the new DB9 Carbon Black Edition is another wheeled embodiment of a familiar meal, albeit garnished with a few fresh trimmings.
Although it’s had a couple of nips and tucks along the way, the DB9 is now the grand old man of the sports GT segment, having debuted way back in 2003 at the Frankfurt motor show. The most recent overhaul in late 2012 brought a raft of cosmetic and mechanical tweaks, but the raw ingredients were left untouched.
Among the major upgrades for the 2013 model-year DB9 were an uprated (mainly through better breathing) 6.0-litre V12 that eked out 510bhp (an increase of 40bhp) and 620Nm (+20Nm), yielding a claimed 0-100kph split of 4.6sec and top whack of 295kph. Offsetting
the extra grunt was a standard set of carbon-ceramic Brembo stoppers featuring 398mm cross-drilled discs at the front and 360mm discs at the rear. Visually, the new model was distinguishable by its reprofiled headlights, a more aggressive front bumper/splitter assembly, revised rear spoiler and clear-lens LED taillights.
Now comes yet another variation on the theme in the form of the DB9 Carbon Black edition. As suggested by the moniker, it’s noir in the extreme, featuring Carbon Black gloss paint, carbon-fibre side strakes and black window surrounds. The interior carries over the dark mood, with the only contrast provided by red stitching (matching the hue of the brake callipers) on the seats, centre console and door trims, along with a smattering of carbon-fibre trim.
So, it’s an Aston Martin – and a limited-edition one at that. How disappointing then, that the cabin has such a low-rent ambience. There’s hard, plasticky trim wherever you look, and all the switchgear has a real cheap, flimsy feel to it. Worse still is the steering wheel, which looks for all the world like it could have been plucked straight out of a Ford Focus or Nissan Tiida.
There simply isn’t the