Aston Martin DBX Concept surprises at Geneva
Providing a bit of drama beyond the introduction of the Aston Martin Vulcan supercar, the British automaker surprised the crowd by having a second, unannounced concept on hand, the DBX, a crossover SUV coupe. The vehicle was commissioned by new CEO Andy Palmer when he took over Aston Martin last October.
The 4-passenger 2-door coupe with the stance and ride height of an SUV also breaks with Aston Martin convention in that it is an all-wheel drive electric. According to Palmer, he charged his design and engineering staff to think out of the box.
"The DBX Concept is a challenge to the existing status quo in the high luxury GT segment," Palmer said. "It envisages a world when luxury GT travel is not only stylish and luxurious but also more practical, more family-friendly and more environmentally responsible. I asked my team at Aston Martin to expand their thinking beyond conventions, to explore what the future of luxury GT motoring would look like in years ahead, and the DBX Concept you see before you is the result."
Traditional grille, futuristic package
Beyond the trademark Aston grille, the DBX use of materials represents the company's forward thinking in the use of lightweight aluminum. The concept's exterior bright work is made from machined billet with visible milling lines in a piece of craftsmanship intended to be seen as jewelry. The DBX Concept's unique paint finish - Black Pearl Chromium - has been specially created to mimic the look of a genuine black pearl, and comprises a micro-fine layer of chrome to deliver a level of reflectivity that cannot be obtained through normal paint finishes.
Inside, designers deliberately chose to use non-automotive materials to create a soft, cocoon-like cabin. This includes extensive application of velvet-like Nubuck leather, which contrasts with the concept's hard, hi-tech equipment. The exposed leather reveals a sandwiched accent layer, more akin to high-end furniture, while the car's interior bright accents mimic that of the exterior with the addition of a gold 'pin striping' element on the edging.
In addition to space for four, the DBX also boasts plenty of cargo space thanks to the use of an electric power train that frees up space both beneath the front hood and in the rear.
"The DBX Concept is more than a thought starter for us and for our customers, though," Palmer explained. " We will, in due course, be entering a car into the new DBX space and I am very much looking forward to seeing how this concept is received not only here today, but also by our legion of existing loyal customers and by those potential customers around the world who have, to this point, yet to consider one of our cars."