Aston Martin DB5 Convertible
Bonhams gets top money for improved DB5 convertible at its new-look Aston sale
The top seller at Bonhams’ newly relocated Aston Martin was fittingly its catalogue’s cover star – a 1965 DB5 convertible. The last-but-one of 85 built, it was sold as a UK car and had clocked up just three owners in 55 years.
Rerfurbished over the years as needed, it had managed to retain the original leather interior, wearing the kind of patina you can never replicate. Other elements were less original, however. Selling for a near-top-estimate £886,300 caused some to question the non-original 4.2-litre engine, white rather than the green listed on the original order form (changed before sale), and a five-speed ZF ’box fitted in 1966.
How much should such things affect a DB5’S value, with originality seemingly of growing importance at the top end of the market? We spoke to Roger Bennington, MD of Aston specialist Stratton Motor Company, who put it all in perspective.
‘The change of paint that was made on the original build sheet and the original invoice would not be unusual, because in period in the Sixties and Seventies it wasn’t unusual for Aston to sell a car that was currently in build and have the specification changed mid-production. It was also not unusual to carry out structural changes to the seats and make gearbox changes providing it was done either by an authorised distributor or the factory.
‘In period it wasn’t unusual for Aston to sell a car that was in build and have the specification changed’
‘The later 4.2 upgrade is again another enhancement which is carried out to a lot of these vehicles and makes them more driverfriendly. But again, if a collector is looking for a car to do concours he is going to be looking for an original car whereas if the buyer is looking for a car to drive, the 4.2 is more attractive.
‘Perfect, original and properly restored cars are extremely hard to find and in most cases they make exceptional money. Hence why barn-finds of an original, untouched car make well above average price because they enable the buyer to restore the car to its absolute original glory. This particular car I feel, in view of its condition, made a reasonable price.’
The top money paid for this upgraded DB5 suggests the new owner is a keen driver rather than a pedantic collector