Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato

The Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato is an exclusive sports car with British engineering and Italian bodywork. The car was built in 1960 and 1961 in collaboration between Aston Martin and Zagato Milan bodyshop. The designed by Ercole Spada vehicle is one of the most beautiful cars ever built. Over the years, created 19 original vehicles and eight working replicas.


The Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato based technically on the Aston Martin DB4 GT, which in turn was a sportier, shorter version of the standard coupe DB4. The initially for motorsport inserts provided DB4 GT from 1959 had proved compared to vehicles from Ferrari to be too heavy, so the work looking for a way to build a weight-reduced version of the sports car. Tony Crook, at the time the largest Bristol merchant and British representative of Zagato, mediated in the autumn of 1959, the contact between Aston Martin and Milan's Carrozzeria, who was known for the production of very light car bodies.

The GT4 Zagato used the chassis of the DB4GT. Technical changes did not exist here.

Power was known from the DB4 six-cylinder in-line engine, whose displacement was 3.7 liters. The compression ratio 9,7:1 increased. The mixture preparation was carried out by three double carburetors Weber. Thus, the engine power was increased compared to the DB4 GT "appreciable". After work to the engine delivered 314 hp, 12 hp more than the DG4 GT. Observers believe, however, that for a " fancy words" ( fantasy figure ): is generally accepted that 270 hp was not exceeded. The car had an acceleration of 6.2 s/0-100 km / h, reaching a top speed of 246 km / h

The body of the GT Zagato DBT4 was designed by Ercole Spada, who had recently become chief designer at Zagato. It was the first car whose design Spada was responsible alone. Its design goes to a - back Coupe, the Zagato was produced in 1959 for the British car manufacturer Bristol - now hardly known. This as Bristol 406 S designated single piece and the Aston Martin looked very similar.

The DB4 GT Zagato body of distinguished by high arches. She was consistently designed for weight reduction. Zagato used for the production of aluminum, which has been brought manually by means of a model in the form of wood. The windows were made of plexiglass, also was dispensed trim and convenience features. The body was supported by a frame made ​​of 8 mm thick steel pipes. The vehicles had - unlike the factory DB4 GT - regular recessed lights, which were covered with Plexiglas. However, a single vehicle carrying the front car of the production model.


Aston Martin and Zagato were planning to produce the DB4 GT Zagato in 23 copies. However, only 19 cars were built 1960-1961 due to low demand actually. They are the original DB4 GT Zagato copies of. 1988 originated remaining vehicles which are known as sanction II models. Two other specimens that were completed in 1996 1988 manufactured spare parts, hot Sanction III.

19 copies: The original Zagato

The production of the car was carried out at Zagato: Aston Martin delivered drivable chassis to Milan. There the body was put in hand work before the car was zurücktransporiert to Newport Pagnell, Aston Martin where it completed. The vehicles vary significantly from each other in details. In some questions the Zagato design took on customers' needs into consideration. Some vehicles have been tuned for racing, others designed so that they could get a street legal. During the construction period also incorporated findings from the already delivered to customers in the specimens under construction.

The Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato was unveiled at the London Motor Show at Earls Court in 1960. The exhibition copy had no engine, but only a dummy made ​​of wood. In his mind the car £ 5400, which corresponded to the equivalent of eleven Minis cost. The extra cost over the regular DB4 was £ 1,500, compared to the factory DB4 GT Zagato of £ 600 was more expensive.

The sales did not meet expectations Aston Martins. The very expensive GT4 Zagato could be sold only reluctantly. The last vehicles were sold in 1962 at a discount from the factory.

Today, the DB4 GT Zagato belongs to this classics. In 2010, a copy for the price of 1.2 million euros was sold.

The DB4 GT Zagato Sanction II

1988 Aston Martin decided to build first four other models with serial numbers (0192, 0196, 0197 and 0198 ) not previously used, which almost completely corresponded to the original. The reason for the decision, in 1988 was a marked flowering of classic car market in the late 1980s, which meant that for classic cars often millions of dollars were paid.

Zagato, the copyright holder of the body and connected with the British company since 1984 on the Aston Martin V8 Zagato again on business, the new agreed. The technical layout was almost identical with that of the original vehicle; Only the electrics had been revised, and the new building went on slightly smaller tires; Finally, the engines were noticeably more powerful thanks to the other carburetor.

In a special operation in the UK Aston Martin had a total of six chassis modeled after the DB4 GT produced. Four of them were transported to Italy, where they were dressed in the private workshop of that former Zagato employee who had established in the early 1960s, the bodies of the original vehicles. An original DB4 GT Zagato has been sent along and there is disassembled to make the local staff familiar with the design features of the 1960s. The final touches were given the vehicles ultimately at Aston Martin.

The completion of the vehicles pulled into the length; in 1991 the cars were ready for use. Paragraph worries Aston Martin did not have to nevertheless make: The four Sanction II models were in 1988 - has been sold - within 15 minutes after the announcement of the production decision. They each achieved a price equivalent to € 1.2 million.

The DB4 GT Zagato Sanction III

Two more bodies have been set up parallel with the four Sanction II models in Italy - were initially intended as part carrier - along with the surplus chassis. In fact, however, there was no need for spare parts, so that Aston Martin 1996, helped decided to complete two more vehicles from these parts. The cars were completed in a short time and are repeatedly referred to as " Sanction III " in British literature.

The Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato in motorsport

Several DB4 GT Zagato were used in the early 1960s in motorsport.

The British team Essex Racing Stable reported two vehicles to the 24- hour race at Le Mans in 1961. A car was driven by the Australians Lex Davison and Bib Stillwell, the second drove Jack Fairman and Bernard Consten. Both cars fell after two and a half hours because of defective cylinder head gaskets from: A mechanic had not tightened properly before the cylinder heads. DB4 GT Zagato A third was reported privately by Jean Jacques Kerguen and Dewes. The French laid back 286 rounds before failed for technical reasons. 1962 appeared in Le Mans two DB4 GT Zagato; but they came not to the finish.

Essex announced the two GT Zagato in the years 1961 and 1962 in addition to the RAC Tourist Trophy at Goodwood. Drivers were Roy Salvadori and Jim Clark. 1961 Aston Martin both came behind the technically superior Ferrari factory car to the finish, 1962, she fell for technical reasons prematurely or after a mistake ( Clark) from.