As­ton Martin DB5 Con­vert­ible

Bon­hams gets top money for im­proved DB5 con­vert­ible at its new-look As­ton sale

Classic Cars (UK) - - News -

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

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