James Bond car is British again

I spy ... Aston Martin DBS as driven by Daniel Craig's Bond, inset. The company is to become British again.

Motoring Editor
March 07, 2007

JAMES BOND’S favourite car firm will soon be back in British hands.

A consortium led by motor sport entrepreneur Dave Richards is expected to clinch a 500million deal to buy Aston Martin within the next week.

American owners Ford will lose the jewel in their crown — but get a much-needed cash injection.

And fans of the marque will see in Richards a real enthusiast among the new owners. He is boss of performance car specialists Pro-Drive and helps run Aston’s own racing team.

Present chief executive Dr Ulrich Bez will stay at the helm after taking sales from fewer than 100 cars in 1992 to a record 7,010 last year.

Aston are currently the hottest car firm in the world.

Not only are they enjoying record sales but they also got their latest model, the DBS, pride of place alongside Daniel Craig in Bond movie Casino Royale. Several stunning new models will hit showrooms over the next two years, including a 180,000 production version of Bond’s DBS.

Next week Aston will launch a 90,000 soft top version of its V8 coupe. And in 2008 there will be a spectacular four-door coupe version called the Rapid.

At the opening of the Geneva Motor Show yesterday Dr Bez confirmed to The Sun that Aston were close to a decision on the sale.

SUN MOTORING COMMENT: This is great news for Aston Martin owners and fans. Richards is one of the most respected names in motoring and leads a consortium of top businessmen.

But the best news is that Dr Ulrich Bez will continue to run the company. Bez is the man with the Midas touch who has masterminded the revival of Aston and already has a long-term plan for the future of the company.

And when this deal is complete, Aston will be on course to be potentially the world’s greatest car firm.
k.gibson@the-sun.co.uk (external - login to view)