Aston Martin’s striking Lagonda saloon received unprecedented levels of interest when it was revealed earlier this year in official images – so much so that the car may now be made available to buyers around the world.
Dr Andy Palmer addressed an audience at an exclusive Dubai hotel, and officially announced that the car will be branded as the ‘Lagonda Taraf’, which translates to ‘ultimate luxury’, in the Middle East. It will arrive in 2015 with a price tag reportedly in excess of £400,000.
When the Lagonda was originally announced as a production car, Aston was adamant it would be a strictly limited small series for Middle Eastern buyers only, but Dr Palmer is now seriously considering selling the Lagonda worldwide. It would be likely to reach the UK in small numbers if that was confirmed.
“It is clear from the initial reaction to the car that interest from around the world is extremely high and I can confirm today that we are also evaluating the opportunity to offer this Lagonda in other markets” Aston’s CEO said.
Aston Martin originally planned to build 100 of these cars then sell them to a select group of Middle Eastern customers on an invitation-only basis. This was clearly the plan from the outset, as the first pictures we saw of the undisguised car showed it strapped to an airfreight pallet arriving in the region it will eventually call home for hot weather testing.
Later, official images were released showing a close view of the exterior at night time. Elegant LED front and rear lights can be seen in these night-time shots, as well as the Aston Martin front badge emblem changed to just read 'Lagonda'.
Five shots of the interior show the car's lavish seats and clearly very upmarket trimmings, although those pictures don't reveal the dashboard area. Quilted leather covers the seats, doors and roof lining, and rear passengers clearly have generous levels of legroom, as well as body-hugging seats.
They also have some form of advanced infotainment and climate system to play with in the back, all surrounded by gorgeous aluminium trim. The centre-console looks to be familiar Aston fare, but expect some extensive updates there.
Technical details on the Lagonda are sketchy but it's expected that a 565bhp+ version of Aston's thunderous 5.9-litre V12 takes pride of place, and there's certainly room for it under that expansive bonnet.
Drive is sent to the rear wheels via a six-speed automatic transmission and performance should be worthy of the Aston Martin brand. Expect a top speed close to 200mph and 0-62mph pace around the 5-second mark.
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The new Aston Martin Lagonda will be based on the VH paltform that underpins all current Aston Martins but, as we can see, its angular styling sets it apart from the manufacturer’s other current models. The car also features a stretched wheelbase to produce the rear leg room that’s essential for a top-end luxury saloon.
Developed by Aston’s design chief Marek Reichmann, the car's exterior styling borrows heavily from the 1976 Lagonda’s iconic wedge-shape, as well as featuring more modern touches that reference the Rapide. As we reported when the new Lagonda was first spied back in May, the sharply sculpted boot, roofline and flanks also provide further nods to the William Towns-designed original.
Like its 1976 predecessor, which pioneered the use of LED instrumentation in its interior, the new Lagonda will employ cutting edge car design tech including carbon fibre bodywork.
Each Lagonda will be hand-built at the firm's Gaydon factory using the same facilities that previously produced the One-77 and under the auspices of the 'Q by Aston Martin' special projects division responsible for the CC100 roadster.
Lagonda was founded in 1906 and bought by Aston Martin in 1947 when renowned boss David Brown was at the helm. It's operated in fits and starts ever since with the DB4-based Lagonda Rapide saloon arriving 1964 and a series of Aston Martin V8 based four-doors built between 1974 and 1976.
The best known Aston Martin Lagonda was William Towns' squared-off saloon of 1976, although Aston did build a very limited run of Virage-based Lagonda cars in the early 1990s. It remains unclear if the new car will be badged as an Aston Martin Lagonda or simply as a Lagonda.
What do you think of the new Aston Martin Lagonda? Would you prefer one over a Rolls-Royce Phantom or a Bentley Mulsanne? Let us know in the comments section below…
This is an article about the model Aston Martin Lagonda Taraf
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