Aston Martin Profile


Aston Martin Lagonda Limited commonly known as Aston Martin is a luxury car unit whose headquarters is situated at Gaydon, England. The company was founded in the year 1913 by Lionel Martin and Robert Bamford. As the name (Aston Martin) suggests it is derived from the name of the founder (Lionel Martin) and from the Aston Hill Climbing Race situated at the Aston Clinton. As Martin often raced at Aston Hill, he decided to include it in his Company’s name.

In the year 1912 itself both Lionel Martin and Robert Bamford joined together to sell the cars made by the Singer where they also made services to other vehicles. In 1913 both had decided to start their own automobile company and the first Aston Martin came out in the year 1915 which was designed by Lionel Martin. The first car includes a Coventry-Simplex engine with four-cylinders. They were not able to continue the production due to the broke out of the First World War where Martin and Bamford had to join in the Admiralty the Royal Army Service Corps respectively.

The company again started its production after the completion of First World War. In 1920 Bamford resigned from his ownership. Later the company was financially supported by Count Louis Zborowski. Bamford and Martin again joined in 1922 with a view to produce cars for French Grand Prix. Due to poor financial condition, the company was liquidated in 1924 and the company was bought by Lady Charnwood. Once again the company failed in 1925. With the leaving of Lionel Martin the company was forced to close in 1926.

Later a new management took the charge which includes rich investors such as Bill Renwick, Augustus Bertelli and even including Lady Charnwood. This time the company was renamed as Aston Martin Motors. Renwick and Bertelli concentrated to improve the goodwill of the company as they had heard news that company was no longer in production. Till 1937 Bertelli hold the responsibility of technical director and designer of the Aston Martin cars. Not only Bertelli was a good racer but also he was very eager to race the cars which he made. Thus the fame of Aston Martin Motors increased in the national as well as international races.

Once again the company met with financial crisis in the year 1932 and this time

Prideaux Brune came for the rescue before the company was transferred to Sir Arthur Sutherland. Under Sir Arthur Sutherland, the company concentrated on the production of

road cars. Till the breakout of Second World war the production was so limited that only 700 cars were made. During the war time production was completely stopped and aircraft components were made.

The Aston Martin Motors was taken over by David Brown Limited in the year1947. Now it was the turn of Sir David Brown, the managing director of David Brown Limited to rescue the company after war. In the same year David Brown acquired the Lagonda and

both the companies shared the resources. It was during the period of David Brown, the classic DB series car started producing.

The company was often troubled by financial problems regardless of the rise in value of its cars. The company was sold to William Wilson in the year 1972 which he later passed on to Peter Sprague and George Minden, the two North American businessmen in the year 1975. It was under them the company was modernized by producing models such as

V8 Vantage, Volante etc.

When the sale sales of Aston Martin shrank, Minden and Sprague decided to stop production. Later Victor Gauntlett became a major share holder of Aston Martin and it was during his period the company’s fame spread to the gulf countries.

From Gauntlett, Ford took over the Aston Martin and placed it in the Premier Automotive Group. Under Ford, Aston Martin was very well developed. Due to financial difficulties Ford decided to sell its luxury car units like Aston Martin, Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo car units in 2006. On 12 March 2007, Ford sold Aston Martin to David Richards, chairman of Prodrive for £479 million. Ford has also a stake in the company.

With the appearance of Aston Martin in the James Bond series films, its publicity has increased and the sales shoot up. According to Ian Fleming’s novel Aston Martin is the official car of James Bond.

Further Readings:

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  5. Aston Martin DB4 Technical Specifications

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