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Expert Reviews 1 of 2
By Cars.com Staff
December 19, 2008
Vehicle Overview The Aston Martin DB9 is the larger, more expensive offering in Aston's lineup compared to the V8 Vantage. The DB9, which comes in coupe and convertible (Volante) forms, is powered by a 6.0-liter V-12 engine that generates 470 horsepower. Competitors include the Ferrari F430 and Lamborghini Gallardo.
New for 2009 Like its smaller V8 Vantage sibling, the DB9 gains more power for 2009, up by 20 hp. Other enhancements include tweaks to the chassis and suspension for better handling. There are also new bits inside and outside, including a new wheel design and new materials on the center console.
Exterior A long aluminum hood sits above a familiar Aston Martin grille, and there are side strakes on the front quarter panels. The DB9's rear haunches are wide and curvaceous, and its profile features a prominent trunk. "Swan wing" doors rise at a 12-degree angle for easier access.
19-inch 10-spoke alloy wheels are a new design for 2009
Aluminum and lightweight composite body panels
Magnesium steering column and inner doorframe
Volante's fabric top folds underneath a hard tonneau cover that sits flush with the bodywork
Sensors can detect a potential rollover and deploy a roll bar (Volante)
Aston Martin says the windshield pillars can withstand twice the car's body weight
Optional front parking sensors
Optional LEDs in the door handles
Interior The DB9 offers 2+2 seating that features leather with walnut, mahogany or bamboo trim. New on the inside is a center console constructed from die-cast zinc with a painted silver finish. To start the engine, the driver must press a clear glass button. The tachometer dial runs counterclockwise and has no redline. Instead, a red warning symbol appears at various engine speeds, depending on ambient temperature and engine mileage.
Steering-wheel audio controls
Auxiliary jack for MP3 players
Optional satellite radio
Standard audio system with 700 watts
Multilingual information system includes Russian, Greek and Chinese
Under the Hood The DB9's 6.0-liter V-12 produces 470 hp and 420 pounds-feet of torque — up from 450 hp — while torque is unchanged. Aston Martin says the manual-shift DB9 can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 4.7 seconds. That's quick, but not blindingly fast, like the Gallardo and F430. According to Car and Driver and Motor Trend, the Gallardo sprints to 60 mph in around 4 seconds, while the F430 does it in 3.5 seconds.
ZF six-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters uses buttons to select Drive, Park, Neutral and Reverse
Available six-speed manual gearbox
Coupe's top speed increases to 190 mph
Rear-mounted gearbox helps achieve 50/50 weight distribution
Full undertray reduces lift and drag
Safety Safety features include:
All-disc antilock brakes with electronic brake-force distribution and brake assist
Seat-mounted side-impact airbags
Electronic stability system
Head and thorax side airbags
Expert Reviews 1 of 2
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