Since the 2004 arrival of the DB9, all Aston Martins have been based on the company’s VH (vertical horizon) platform, which was developed during the time that Ford owned the English sports car manufacturer. The platform has its size limitations however, and cannot be stretched beyond the point that it is on the Rapide.
CEO Dr. Ulrich Bez, has a plan to bring back the famed Lagonda name, but on a large, luxury four-door model. The problem is that Aston Martin is now a small independent manufacturer owned by a group of private investors, with no ties to other large scale automakers.
That sent Bez searching for a partner to build the new vehicle, as the company’s investor-owners lack auto development experience. The result; Aston Martin and Mercedes-Benz will be teaming up to bring us a new breed of Lagondas and Maybachs.
Aston first approached BMW and Mercedes-Benz, but talks with BMW broke down in early 2010.
Now the next Maybach will use the 2013 Mercedes-Benz S-class’s platform and hardware, and will be built by Aston Martin in Gaydon, England. In addition to building the next Maybach, Aston will also use S-class platform, engines, transmission and chassis for its own Lagonda sedan.
Team work is beautiful.
– By: Stephen Calogera