DB2/4 saloon
DB2/4 saloon

DB2/4 saloon

(1953 - 1955)

Introduced to the public at the London Motor Show in 1953, the DB2/4 offered very much a first in the motoring world - since then much copied. It's Aston Martin that we have to thank for bringing the world the 'sporting hatchback' although they failed to patent this innovation. This came about as the DB2/4 was a four seater (really a 2+2) unlike the pure two seat DB2, and rear access was required for the occupants luggage. With the rear seats folded down, the DB2/4 had a colossal luggage capacity. The rear screen was significantly larger than on the DB2 which aids easy identification.

DB2/4 saloon

The roofline of the DB2/4 was raised so as to provide extra headroom for rear seat passengers. Also the front windscreen became a single piece full width curved affair. 50 years after it was first seen, the hatchback returned to the Aston Martin range on the AMV8 Vantage concept and into production with the Gaydon built V8 Vantage.

As well as the useful hatchback, the DB2/4 can be distinguished from the earlier car by more substantial bumpers with over-riders. That said, its quite common to see DB2/4′s modified for the track without bumpers fitted.  Also the headlamps were repositioned slightly higher than on early DB2′s as demanded by new safety regulations.

Initially the DB2/4 had, as standard, the 2.6 litre engine (2580 cc, VB6E/) in Vantage tune straight from the DB2 which produced 125bhp. Then from mid 1954, an enlarged 2.9 litre (2922 cc, VB6/J) was introduced giving 140bhp. This translated into a genuine 120mph top speed.

While the DB2/4 is regarded as a Feltham, they were actually built in many different places. The rolling chassis, engines and other parts were made in the David Brown Industries factories at Meltham Mill near Huddersfield and the tractor engine factory at Farsley, both in Yorkshire. David Brown was a Yorkshireman himself of course. The coachwork were assembled by Mulliners of Birmingham from panels made by such people as Airflow Streamline in Northampton. Then  the cars arrived at Feltham for finishing.  However, by 1955 the cars were assembled entirely at Farsley.  Fully trimmed bodies from Mulliners were fitted to the chassis and finished on a production line alongside the David Brown tractors.

In total, 451 DB2/4 saloons were built before the model was replaced by the DB2/4 Mark II, late in 1955.

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