Normally, a quick swipe from corner to corner on a beloved road is enough to show you what a car can really do. That’s not the case in the Aston Martin DBX707, a car with so much power you’re constantly running out of space. It’s a far cry from the standard SUV that Aston launched just a few years ago – not just in power, but also in feel and style.
At the DBX707 launch in Sardinia, Aston’s new man at the top, former AMG boss Tobias Moers didn’t mince words when he spoke about his intentions for Aston Martin in the future : it will be more performance-oriented, smoother and almost certainly disturb a manufacturer that rhymes with “Smorsche” in a much more meaningful way. But the product has to be up to it to do it, and Moers isn’t the kind of guy to let a pup leave the factory gates.
The DBX707 looks, in every way, bigger than the standard DBX. Moers’ new steering means a more focused appearance across the board, but since the DBX707 packs a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 that produces 697 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque, it also needs a massive mouth to keep its engine cool. 62 mph comes in 3.3 seconds, which is impressive for an SUV weighing nearly 5,000 pounds, and its top speed of 193 mph makes it the fastest SUV in the world. The car’s aerodynamics have been set up to keep things neutral at silly speeds, and a set of optional carbon-ceramic brakes let you lose some of that massive speed when you need it.
As well as a new exterior look, the Aston gets new sports seats to keep everyone in place when the driver decides to give the DBX707 a shoestring, as well as a redesigned center console. There aren’t so many overwhelming buttons in there anymore; there’s a new drive mode dial, a big button to activate manual mode and lots of carbon fiber.
To sandwich all that horsepower into the DBX707, Aston stuffed it with a set of new turbos, a new induction system and a new engine tune. Find yourself a quiet stretch of road and hit the gas. It takes a moment for the snails to wind up before the boom – you’ve launched yourself through three gears and are approaching (or exceeding) the speed limit. A Tesla Model X might be quicker on paper, but the turbo torque paired with gritty V8 noise and quick shifting sounds delightfully old world here. Cars like the DBX707 will soon be a thing of the past, and Aston Martin seems to relish sending its internal combustion efforts to a bang.
In GT mode, the day-to-day setting of the DBX707, the car handles well enough. The tailpipes are quiet after barking, the new nine-speed automatic transmission slips silently through gears, and the cabin is quiet. Light steering, smooth ride – it’s all pretty serene. The DBX is still a crisp family car. And yet, the moment you press it, the noise occurs. Loud, grumpy silliness of the V8.
Throw it into Sport or Sport Plus and the whole “707” starts to make a lot of sense. As well as more performance and an angrier look, Aston is giving the DBX707 a stiffer front suspension, softer rear suspension, new shock absorbers, uprated and retuned differentials, a shorter carbon transmission and retuned steering. The result is a DBX that handles beautifully. Its ride isn’t harsh no matter how hard you ask the springs to be. You are not punished for wanting a fast car in this case. The steering offers plenty of feedback, which makes getting the DBX from corner to corner pretty fun. The manual mode of the new transmission is brilliant; pull the paddle and it’ll grab the gears like a real sports car, giving you more control than you might expect from a ‘family’ SUV. The paddle shifters are also satisfying to use.
While you’re at it, try launch control. It’s deliberately easy to activate: engage Sport or Sport Plus mode, step on the brake, step on the accelerator, wait for the dash to tell you to lift the brake and engage it. It’s a brilliant showcase of the blazing fast yet remarkably simple DBX707.
The 2023 Aston Martin DBX707 is a high-performance, entertaining and comfortable car. A spacious too. There is enough room for people in the back and enough space for luggage so that a family can leave for a week without missing anything. The only real irritation in the cabin is the lack of a touchscreen. Although it does all the phone mirroring you could want, with the standardand , you cannot interact with any of them by touch. For a car that starts at $239,086 (including $3,086 for delivery), that’s a lost ball, especially since the selection wheel for navigating menus isn’t the easiest to understand.
It is clear that the new management of Aston Martin is promising. The same familiar look, breathtaking performance to worry the Germans, yet the cars are not lacking in ergonomics. You can feel Moers’ AMG influence in the car, but not overwhelmingly so. The DBX707 borrows from the best of Aston and Moers, making for something rather wonderful. This SUV looks a bit like a throwback to the days when Aston made ridiculously powerful cars for the hell of it, but this time it’s got a feel for what will actually sell. The DBX707 looks like a last hurray, a celebration of internal combustion that doesn’t spare the fireworks.
Editor’s note: Travel costs related to this story were covered by the manufacturer, which is common in the automotive industry. The judgments and opinions of Roadshow staff are our own and we do not accept paid editorial content.