To address aerodynamic shortcomings of Carrozzeria Touring’s fastback design on the DB4 and DB5, Aston Martin decided to pursue their own development for their successor, the DB6. Intent on keeping the signature body lines, Aston Martin engineers nevertheless needed to address customer complaints of the DB5’s instability at high speeds and in crosswinds. Wind-tunnel testing showed the car’s elegant fastback design created an aerodynamic effect that reduced rear-wheel traction. To rectify this, designers and engineers made various improvements, most notable being the signature “Kamm tail.” A significant advancement in aerodynamic science, the slight upward curve in the tail enhanced stability at high speeds.
Both the DB4 and DB5 had been fitted with occasional rear seating, which was quite cramped for adults. To remedy this, an extra 3.75 inches was added to the DB6’s wheelbase to increase legroom while the roof was also raised for more headroom. The rear axle was relocated slightly, and the suspension shortened, not only allowing for more elbow room, but also further improving stability.
Though the DB6 was considered by some to be less attractive than the outgoing DB5, due to its swollen proportions, it was undoubtedly the better driver. With a top speed of 150 mph and ample room for four adult passengers, the DB6 is still thought of as one of the world’s best grand tourers.