Aston Martin V8 Volante
LHD ZF 5-speed Manual gearbox
Chassis no. V8COL15191
•One of only a very few original left-hand drive examples with the sought-after manual transmission
•Original colour scheme
•Recently recommissioned at no expense spared
•Highly original example
Aston Martin had always intended the DBS to house its new V8 engine, but production difficulties meant that the car first appeared with the DB6's 4.0-liter six. Bigger and more luxuriously appointed than the DB6, the heavyweight DBS disappointed some by virtue of its slightly reduced performance, but there were no complaints when the V8 finally arrived in 1969. With an estimated 315bhp available from its 5,340cc four-cam engine, the DBS V8 could reach 100mph in under 14 seconds, running on to a top speed of 160mph, a staggering performance in those days and one which fully justified the claim that it was the fastest production car in the world. After Aston Martin's acquisition by Company Developments in 1972, production resumed with the Series 2, now known as the Aston Martin V8 and distinguishable by a restyled front end recalling the looks of earlier Astons. The most successful Aston Martin ever, the V8 survived the changes of ownership and financial upheavals of the 1970s, enjoying a record-breaking production run lasting from 1969 to 1988, with 2,919 cars sold.
Described by former Aston Martin Chairman Victor Gauntlett as 'a stylish thoroughbred, beautifully built, luxurious, fast and immensely safe', the V8 was built in several variants, one of the more exclusive being the Volante convertible. Introduced in response to customer demand for such a car, the Volante first appeared in June 1978. Arguably the ultimate in soft-top luxury, the newcomer boasted a lined, power-operated top which, when erected, endowed the walnut embellished interior with all the solidity and refinement associated with the saloon version. The 5,340cc DOHC V8 Engine with 4 Dual-Throat Weber Carburetors produced 300bhp at 6,000rpm. Although its open-car aerodynamics meant that top speed suffered with the top down, the Volante's 240km/h maximum nevertheless ranked it among the world's fastest convertibles. V8 Volante and Vantage Volante chassis numbers ran from '15001' to '15849', a total of only 849 cars.
According to copies of Aston Martin's factory build records, this V8 Volante was shipped from the UK on 23rd May 1980 to Aston Martin Sales Inc of New Rochelle, New York. Left-hand drive and equipped with the five-speed manual transmission and a Vantage front air dam, it was finished in Jubilee Silver with black leather interior, black carpeting, and a black Everflex convertible top, as it is today.
Sold in July 1981 to its first owner, the Aston was transported to California where it would remain until it was sold to the second owner six years later with only 14,000 miles recorded. For the following three decades, this superb V8 Volante was driven sparingly and is today presented with only 43,106 miles showing on the odometer. The immediately preceding owner purchased the car from Doc Severinsen, former bandleader on 'The Tonight Show', and before Mr Severinsen's ownership it resided in Palm Springs.
The current vendor, specifically looking for this rare (Volante, early series with carburation, left-hand drive, ZF 5-speed manual gearbox) version purchased the Aston in the USA in August 2016, since when it has been re-commissioned and converted to EU specification with correct bumpers, etc. In addition, the engine has been checked over, a new convertible hood installed, and the interior detailed. Close to €30,000 has been spent and the car now looks wonderful with a nicely patinated interior.
Offered here with its owner's manual, parts book, workshop manual, copy of factory built sheet, tools, invoices and car cover, this V8 Volante must be one of the best preserved examples currently available. As a well-cared for California car, it has a wonderful patina and originality that is difficult to replicate. The car's maintenance and service records are exceptionally comprehensive, running to several hundred invoices.
Left-hand drive and equipped with the desirable and rare ZF five-speed transmission from new, this beautiful V8 Volante is definitely 'the one to have'.
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