1958→1959 Aston Martin DB4 Series I

In October of 1958, Aston Martin revealed their DB4 grand tourer to world. Unlike any other British tourers, it had a fastback body styled by Touring Superleggra of Milan, Italy. As such, the result was remarkably similar to the Maserati 3500.

The DB4 was a much needed replacement for the aging DB2 with its body-on-chassis design. The new DB4 used a pressed-steel chassis tub with a significant amount of round tubing to accommodate the aluminum body panels.

A new 3.7-litre straight six cylinder engine was designed by Tadek Marek for the DB4. It was fitted with SU HD8 carburetors for 240bhp at 5,500 rpm.

The first series of DB4s were produced in the period from October 1958 to January 1960. The Aston Martin Owner’s Club (AMOC) referred to these cars as Series I.

Some of the very first DB4s are easily identified by their lack of door window frames and lack of bumper over riders. After the first 50-or so cars, Aston Martin fitted frames to support the door-windows and combat whistling at high speeds.

After car DB4/249/L Aston Martin updated the model with a larger oil sump, disc brakes and a front mounted hood. This was determined as the turning point for the Series II cars by the AMOC.

In Detail

submitted byRichard Owen
typeSeries Production Car
production years1958 – 1959
released at1958 Paris Motor Show
built atEngland
coachbuilderCarrozzeria Touring
price $$ 9,770
price £/td>£3,976
positionFront Longitudinal
block materialAll Aluminum
fuel feedSU Carburettors
displacement3670 cc / 224.0 in³
bore91.95 mm / 3.62 in
stroke91.9 mm / 3.62 in
engine designerTadek Marek
power179.0 kw / 240 bhp @ 5500 rpm
specific output65.4 bhp per litre
bhp/weight183.49 bhp per tonne
torque332.2 nm / 245.0 ft lbs @ 4000 rpm
body / frameAluminum Panels over Box-Section Steel & Tubular Steel Chassis
driven wheelsRWD
wheel typeWire Wheels
front brakesDunlop Discs
rear brakesDunlop Discs
front wheelsF 40.6 x 15.2 cm / 16.0 x 6.0 in
rear wheelsR 40.6 x 15.2 cm / 16.0 x 6.0 in
steeringRack & Pinion
f suspensionA-Arms w/Coil Springs, Anti-Roll Bar
r suspensionRigid Axle w/Watt Linkage, Coil Springs, Dampers
curb weight1308 kg / 2884 lbs
wheelbase2489 mm / 98.0 in
front track1372 mm / 54.0 in
rear track1359 mm / 53.5 in
length4489 mm / 176.7 in
width1676 mm / 66.0 in
height1321 mm / 52.0 in
transmission4-Speed Manual or 3-Speed Auto
gear ratios2.49:1, 1.74:1, 1.25:1, 1.00:1
final drive3.54:1
top speed~225.6 kph / 140.2 mph
0 – 60 mph~8.5 seconds
0 – 100 mph~18.3 seconds
0 – 1/4 mile~16.1 seconds
combined fuel econ eu16.0 L/100 km or 14.70 mpg-us

Auction Sales History

1958→1959 Aston Martin DB4 Series I

1960 Aston Martin DB4 Series 1 DB4/245/L – did not sell for $600,000 Matching Numbers. One Of 1,110 Built. 4-wheel Disc Brakes All-aluminum Body. Approx 4,000 Miles Since Restoration. Ground-up Restoration By Simon Rodd In 1991. Numerous, First-In-Class Concours Trophies.
Auction Source: ‘Rolling Sculpture’ 2015 NYC by Keno Brothers
1958→1959 Aston Martin DB4 Series I

1960 Aston Martin DB4 Coupé DB4/245/L

Offered complete with a copy of its original build sheet, this DB4 from 1960, chassis DB4/245/L, is an original left-hand drive example that was sold new in the USA via West Coast distributor Charles Hornburg to Mr. Paul S. Pollack of Los Angeles, California. A rare and very desirable early ‘Series I’ car, it is highly collectible as one of about 150 originally built. This DB4 has particularly clean styling with its frameless doors, rear-hinged bonnet and the absence of the later bumper over-riders. In fact, it retains its matching-numbers engine, numbered 370/243.

Auction Source: 2011 Salon Privé Auction by RM

1958→1959 Aston Martin DB4 Series I

1959 Aston Martin DB4 DB4/126/R

his car is one of the very rare and collectible Series I models, only 150 of which were made, and which is recognised as having the cleanest and purest lines of all the DB4 variants. Furthermore, it is the 26th chassis completed and thus not only has the rear-hinged bonnet but also the frame-less side windows and more delicate bumpers without over-riders that characterise the first 50 cars.
‘3514 UG’ was acquired by the present owner in 2004 and subsequently treated to body and paint renovation (mostly around the front of the car); new headlining (being fitted at the time of cataloguing); and servicing carried out by the owner’s resident engineer, a former employee of marque specialists, Aston Engineering. One of the shortcomings of the Series I/Series II models is the lack of an overdrive; this car had one fitted by a previous owner in 2004 during a gearbox overhaul by Four Ashes Garage.

Auction Source: 2010 Collectors’ Motor Cars at Goodwood Revival by Bonhams

1958→1959 Aston Martin DB4 Series I

1960 Aston Martin DB4 Series I DB4/219/L

Our DB4T was delivered new in France to the director of Les Tramways de Nice, then owned by the President of the Club Aston Martin, another collector, and was acquired by its current owner eight years ago. It is grey with a fine, red leather interior (David Brown were also renowned for the quality of their leather) and left-hand drive, and has always been very well cared for (Suntrop invoice € 17500 in 2003); it was parked under cover in the garage of the owner’s château not far from Avignon.

Auction Source: 2010 Artcurial Sport & GTs au Mans Classic