1985 Aston Martin Lagonda Saloon

 

Aston Martin’s periodic revival of the Lagonda name saw it applied to a stretched, 4-door V8 in the mid-1970s, a mere handful of which were constructed. When the concept re-emerged, it was the sensation of the 1976 London Motor Show.

Clothed in striking “razor-edge” bodywork designed by William Towns — the man responsible for the DBS — the new Lagonda saloon used the same long-wheelbase V8 chassis as its immediate predecessor while breaking new ground in terms of electronic instrumentation and switch gear. Problems with the latter would delay production until April 1978, by which time a less-radical design had been adopted.

The interior was every bit as luxurious as the exterior was futuristic, featuring selected Connolly hides, deep Wilton carpeting and plentiful walnut veneer, all hand-finished by skilled craftsmen in the best Aston Martin tradition. The Lagonda was face-lifted in 1987, acquiring a slightly softer, less hard-edged look, and continued in production until May 1990, by which time a total of 645 had been built. Even today, almost 40 years after its sensational debut, there are few cars that can match the visual presence of the Aston Martin Lagonda.

A left-hand-drive model equipped with the almost universal automatic transmission, this example was first owned by one Najib Choufani (from the Lebanese Republic) who had the car registered in the U.K. (as C772 DRO) and delivered to Monte Carlo in French specification (see copy of original bill of sale on file). A letter on file claims that Aston Martin has confirmed that 13493 is the seventh car completed, with an engine incorporating hardened valve seats, which lets it run on unleaded fuel. The Lagonda was next owned (from 1991) by George Patterson of Exmouth, followed by Billy J. Smart of Waltham Abbey, who purchased it in 2008. The current vendor acquired the car in 2010.

Chassis number 13493 comes with a large history file containing the service booklet, assorted correspondence and numerous bills/invoices recording regular maintenance and servicing by Aston Martin Lagonda and various specialists. The most recent invoice, issued by AML in May 2011, is for a 10,000-mile/annual service, a replacement oil cooler and extensive repairs to the sills and other lower body sections. Finished in Suffolk Red with magnolia leather upholstery, and described as in immaculate condition, this well-documented Lagonda is offered with the aforementioned history file, owner’s handbook, numerous expired MoT certificates, U.K. V5C document and a fresh MoT.

Stephen Serio

Stephen Serio - SCM Contributor

Stephen is the president and owner of Aston Martin of New England / Lotus Motorsports Inc. in Waltham, MA, although for the most part, vintage European cars are where his heart is. His need to over-indulge in vintage European cars of the 1950s and 1960s inevitably leads to coveting one more car. Recent garage inhabitants include a Porsche 356A Speedster and 356A European coupe, Ferrari 275 GTS and 246GT, BMW 2002 and a Hudson Hornet. HIs vintage-Porsche-driving wife, Amanda, tolerates this all nicely.

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