Aston Martin Continuation makes new from old

RACV RoyalAuto magazine

New for old

It looks old and is produced using 1950s manufacturing techniques.  But the Aston Martin DB4 GT Continuation is brand new, fresh off the company’s Newport Pagnell production line, where cars such as the James Bond-era DB5 were created.

The 25 ‘Continuation’ cars will complete the original planned production run of 100.

At around $3 million they’re more expensive than any other new Aston Martin – and among the most expensive cars in the world.

Unlike the DB4 GTs from 1959, you get a car that cannot be registered because it doesn’t adhere to the latest regulations.

That hasn’t stopped collectors queuing to own one as a race-track toy; two have been sold to collectors in Australia.

Not just hot air

The man who reinvented the vacuum cleaner and is trying to dry hair and hands more efficiently could soon be competing with Toyota, Mercedes-Benz and BMW.

Inventor James Dyson is reportedly investing billions into a project to create a range of premium electric cars as soon as 2021.

Dyson is tight-lipped on what would be his boldest plan, except to confirm the company is working on solid state batteries, which store more energy than lithium-ion batteries used in most modern electric vehicles.

Already similarities are being drawn with electric car maker Tesla, which produced its first car a decade ago.

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Utes heating up

There’s no sign of a slowdown in the onslaught of shiny new utes in 2018.

Now commanding one in six new-vehicle sales, one of the most eagerly anticipated new pickups is the Mercedes-Benz X-Class, the first workhorse ute from a luxury brand. Priced from $45,450, the X-Class includes top-end versions – with the option of a V6 engine – that are targeted at anyone from families to grey nomads.

We’ll also have performance-oriented utes from Ford and HSV, Nissan has­ revised the suspension on its Navara to make it better suited to carrying loads and towing, while Toyota has added new models to its Hilux line-up, including the Rugged X.

McQueen’s high-rider

It could go down as the ultimate barn find.

One of two Ford Mustangs used in the 1968 blockbuster film Bullitt has resurfaced after decades in the garage of its private owner.

Driven on location in San Francisco by actor Steve McQueen in the classic thriller that includes some of the best car stunts ever conducted by Hollywood, the car was later used as a daily driver before being parked in a garage for decades.

Early this year it was wheeled on stage at the Detroit motor show as a precursor to the limited-edition modern-day Mustang announced for US buyers.

As for Australia, we’ll get an updated Mustang mid-year, complete with a more powerful V8 and new 10-speed auto.

By the numbers

2017 car sales

  • Total new vehicles sold: 1,189,116
  • Top selling car: Toyota Hilux (47,093)
  • Market make-up: Cars (37.8 per cent), SUVs (39.2 per cent), light commercial (19.9 per cent), Heavy commercial (3.1 per cent)

Source: Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries

Written by Toby Hagon
March 14, 2018