Aston Martin DBX India Review, Test Drive

Nikhil Bhatia

It’s not that you are not spoiled by choice, but there is a new way to spend 4 crore on your next car. It is called DBX, it is Aston Martin’s first SUV ever, designed to lure you out of the Uruse in the world. The promise is a true blue Aston-half a thriller, half a gentleman’s express-with five seats and all the ground clearance you need. Bond cars that are friendly to India? This may be it.

X Appeal

The first is size. The compact DBX may not be visible in the photos, but it is a bunch of metal SUVs. A quick spec check will tell you that the DBX is over 5m in length and close to 2m in width, which is as large as its super SUV competitor. The standard size 22-inch rims fill the large wheel arches well, and you can even choose a 23-inch extremely complex design. Does the road exist? There are many DBX.

22-inch rims are standard. 23 inches is in the list of options.

Then came the classic Aston design, which was beautifully reimagined for the SUV styling. The traditional DB grille is enlarged to the size of a billboard here, immediately establishing it as an SUV from Aston Martin. You can even find the connection with GT and sports cars in the long bonnet and tightly fitting roof. That very Vantage-like duck tail trunk lid spoiler will also ensure that you don’t mistake the DBX for Aston, even when viewed from the back. My highlight? It is the rear LED strip from the shoulder to the spoiler to the shoulder.

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The Vantage-style duck tail trunk lid spoiler gives a unique appearance.

The flush door handles, frameless windows and metalwork around the dual exhaust pipes are other interesting details, as well as some cool aerodynamics. The contoured ducts in front of the DRL guide air to the wheel arches, and the large vents behind the arches serve as outlets, forming an air curtain that reduces drag. The high-level wings at the back are not for display either. It guides the airflow along the rear windshield to the spoiler. This movement forces the water to clear automatically (Aston’s words, not our words), which explains why there is no rear wiper. In addition, the flat bottom plate of the DBX is a vital aerodynamic component that is hidden from sight.

Dressed to make a lasting impression

The “Swan Gate” is cleverly designed to open slightly upwards to help clear the curb. It is Aston’s trademark and a feature here, even if Gaoqi DBX does not necessarily need them. With its height, the DBX is the most convenient model for Aston Martin to get in and out, and you will feel like you have been transported to a leather boutique. All the large surfaces from the roof lining to the speaker cover on the door are made of high-quality leather, and first of all, the roller blinds of the panoramic glass roof are also made of Alcantara fabric. There are also beautiful Brock patterns on the seats and center console. Everything is just to tell you that in order to make this interior feel special, a lot of love and labor has been paid. There are usual interior color and theme options. If you want something customized, Aston Martin will be happy to take you into the Q customization program.

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DBX promises to provide the easiest entry and visibility of any Aston. Dash is stylish but not cutting-edge.

DBX’s engraved seat allows you to comfortably hug you in your arms, and the driving position is just right. Contact points such as glass start-stop buttons, large metal shift paddles and even leather sun visors feel quite expensive. There are no window buttons, but in larger scenarios, this is a small complaint. The dashboard also has a pleasing appearance. It does not have the multiple screens necessary today, but it is good; the capacitive switch of the climate control system does a better job than a dedicated screen. However, what keeps pace with the times is the 10.25-inch central screen. You would expect it to be a touch screen, but it is not. It is based on Mercedes’ previous-generation infotainment system and is operated by a rotary controller on the center console. You have no choice but to master the tricks of the system, but when you have to operate Apple CarPlay on the go, you will miss the touch control. However, the thick buttons on the console for mode selector, suspension height adjustment, etc. did get our vote.

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The infotainment screen is operated with a rotary selector and touch pad.

In terms of configuration, DBX comes standard with dual LED headlights, air suspension, 12.3-inch digital dial, 10.25-inch screen, 360-degree camera, 64-color ambient light, 800W audio system, three-zone climate control and electric front seats. You can add more to the car, do we recommend that you check the front and rear seat ventilation options. Lane keeping assist and adaptive cruise control are other interesting optional features.

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The panoramic glass roof makes the cabin feel very airy, and is uniquely equipped with Alcantara roller blinds.

DBX can also meet the needs of rear-seat passengers. The Rapide-the last Aston in the family-feels cramped in the back, while the DBX is quite spacious. The long wheelbase of 3,060 mm is equivalent to a lot of legroom in the back row, and headroom is also great. The large windows and panoramic glass roof help accentuate the sense of interior space. The stylish seats are comfortable, but the high central aisle means that the passengers in the middle will have to make some compromises in the seating position.

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The rear seats have a lot of space and comfort, but they are perfect for accommodating only two passengers.

The electric tailgate of the DBX can lead to the 632-liter luggage area. It is beautiful and practical, and you guessed it, it has a leather-lined wrapping tray. You can even get matching luggage with optional travel bags, which include a four-piece suitcase and a cabin saddle bag. If you need more luggage space, the 40:20:40 split rear seat can be folded flat and includes a space-saving spare part (located under the luggage compartment floor), which is reassuring.

Fire and fury

Mercedes owns some shares in Aston Martin. The German automaker’s contribution to DBX goes beyond the infotainment system, because the SUV is powered by Mercedes-AMG’s sensational 4.0-liter twin-turbo booster. Pressure V8 gasoline engine. In the DBX, the engine produces 550 horsepower and 700 Nm. Power is transmitted to all four wheels via Merc’s 9-speed torque converter automatic transmission. The electronically controlled active central transfer case continuously adjusts the torque between the axles and sends 100% of the power to the rear wheels when needed. The rear electronic limited-slip differential determines how to handle this power, and can also be used for torque vector control through braking.

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The 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 engine comes from AMG. This is a strong one.

Now, the impressive ones are 550 horsepower, 700 Nm, 4.5 seconds to 100 km/h, and V-Max 290 km/h, but they are not the best data among super SUVs. But don’t get lost in the numbers, because on the road, DBX is a very interesting SUV. Like other Astons, the roar of DBX is not as loud as it bursts. Even when idling, the engine notes have depth, and the soft bass allows you to accompany you in your daily commute. Go faster (you will often be tempted), and the exhaust sound will become harsher and healthier. The sport mode enhances the effect, opening the exhaust valve to play the full sound, full of crackling and popping sounds. If you want the entire region to know that you have a DBX, there are also louder sports exhaust options.

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The metalwork on the exhaust pipe complements the handmade atmosphere of DBX.

The performance is also very special. AMG’s twin-turbocharged engine is definitely a powerful engine, and it has been perfectly adapted to DBX. It has the strong mid-range you want, but in terms of responsiveness, it almost feels like a naturally aspirated device. Urus’s power building is stronger, but DBX certainly does not lack personality. The 9-speed gearbox is on the ball in most cases, but it tends to chase the tug on the oar under hard driving.

Inspire your enthusiasm

An SUV that is as fast as a sports car is no longer uncommon, but an SUV that is as interesting as a sports car is. DBX belongs to this elite club. It starts with heavy, linear and precise electric steering. There is an exciting connection to the front wheels, and due to the rear axle offset of the all-wheel drive system, Aston turns with a fluidity that you would not associate with a 2.2-ton SUV. Brave riders will also be able to take full advantage of the full Sport+ mode (which can set the maximum attack power and lower the suspension by 50 mm) to eliminate the tail. There is also a lot of grip, and the standard size of the 48V active anti-roll bar can effectively eliminate the soft left and right weight transfer, you will often be confident that you could go faster when you leave the corner. The best point? It all feels natural. DBX is not an SUV that struggles with the laws of physics like many competitors. The braking is reliable, and Aston Martin says that the DBX will stop as quickly as the DBS Superleggara.

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You can also go to great driving roads or farmhouses outside the city in very comfortable conditions. Switch the driving mode selector to “GT” and DBX will change its personality and become an easy-going long-distance machine. The displacement is reduced, the suspension becomes soft, and the electric anti-roll bar relaxes to provide more force. Although low-profile tires bring some sturdiness, the suspension can absorb imperfections well. We did not test the Aston-specific off-road mode, grade descent control, or 500mm wading capability, but neither did the wealthy DBX owners. The more relevant consumer information is that the suspension is stocked with sufficient ground clearance, and you can choose to increase the ride height by 45 mm, which is very convenient.

DBX benchmark

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Let’s solve one thing first. DBX will always be based on the Lamborghini Urus, the current darling of the Indian super SUV buying elite. Urus is more extreme, more powerful, more gorgeous, and in the basic specifications, it may cost less; although when you start to check the option to upgrade Lambo to DBX specifications, the final price will remain the same.​​​​

Choosing the DBX worth 3.8 crore (ex-showroom) seems to go against the trend, but it is an equally attractive SUV. This is a more subtle interpretation of the super SUV, which attracts you with its charming design and hand-made cab, and finally wins your favor with a truly fascinating driving experience. The exclusivity promised by Aston Martin must also be important.

Car owners are unlikely to use their DBX as a daily driver, but imagine how comforting it is to know that there is an all-weather, multi-purpose Aston Martin waiting for you to break in.

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