With development of the second-generation of DB 6-cylinder sports cars nearing its end, Aston Martin turned to the Italian Carrozzeria Touring of Milan, creator of the original DB4 of 1959, for the next model. Touring built a pair of two-seater prototypes, one right- and one left-hand drive (2661R and 2662L, respectively) which were displayed at the Paris, London, and Turin Motor Shows in 1966. The struggling Italian firm was already in receivership and would close at the end of the year, making these unique Aston Martins the last of its important commissions.
Touring’s Superleggera-bodied prototype 2662L had appeared on the Aston Martin stand at Earls Court, alongside the DB6 Volante, wearing DBS number plates, this break with existing nomenclature being justified by the fact that the “fast two-seater” was intended for only limited production. Logically, the mainstream production model that followed should have been called the DB7, but by the time it appeared in 1967, the press and public had got used to the name DBS, which was duly retained for the William Towns-designed four-seater.
To avoid confusion, the Touring two-seaters were subsequently redesignated DBSC by the factory.
Aston Martin’s first two-seater since the DB4GT, the DBSC used a shortened and modified DB6 chassis, which had been re-engineered to accept the DeDion-type rear suspension that would appear on the production DBS. According to the AMOC, the stock wheelbase was retained but the 6-cylinder engine was mounted 10.5 inches further back in the chassis, while ZF supplied the 5-speed manual transmission.
Nearly seven inches shorter and 5.5 inches lower than the DB6, the DBSC Coupe was said to weigh around 400 lb less than its progenitor. Intended to offer the ultimate in effortless high performance, it was fitted with the Vantage specification engine and easily eclipsed the larger and heavier DB6, itself no slouch, with a top speed in excess of 150 mph. Exhibited at the 1966 Turin Motor Show, Touring’s right-hand-drive prototype, 2661R, is fitted with the 365-hp Vantage C-specification engine, while 2662L has the “ordinary” 325-hp Vantage unit installed.
The DBSC Coupe was purchased by the current owner, who had gone to HR Owen to sample the current Aston Martins and was offered a drive by the chief salesman. He immediately realized that it was superior in every way to his DB4GT-faster and possessing better brakes and lighter steering, yet at the same time affording greater practicality thanks to the opening rear hatch.
The sale was finally concluded in April 1969, at which time the odometer reading stood at about 8,000 miles, since when the vendor has added a further 6,000 or so. Teething troubles meant that the DBSC Coupe had to be returned to the Newport Pagnell factory three times to get the brakes set up correctly, but given its prototype status, that is hardly surprising. Driven regularly for the first few years of ownership, the Aston has spent the past 36 years in careful barn storage.
Finished in Dubonnet Rosso with tan pigskin leather upholstery, this unique piece of Aston Martin history comes with a copy of the old-style logbook, copies of Aston Martin correspondence, current MoT certificate and Swansea V5 registration document. A new spare windscreen is included in the sale.