Aston Martin is a modern, luxury sports car brand instantly recognized around the world. The company is currently implementing the most significant investment program in Aston Martin’s history, backed up by the Italian firm Investindustrial and the Kuwaiti fund Investment Dar, which collectively own a 93% stake, This five year plan envisions a new DB9 in 2016 and – it’s hoped – a return to profits after years of loss making by 2017.
The £500m product investment program, preparing the ground for new and exciting products in the future, brings with it the arrival of new cars such as the V12 Vantage S Roadster, special edition models and 15MY Vanquish and Rapide S, a reworking of the stunning new Lagonda super saloon, and the promise of hybrids and SUV’s by 2020.
Over the last few years the firm has been held back by high levels of debt, a lack of investment, aging models and no crossover vehicles. Missing out on a global boom in luxury car sales that saw the global luxury market virtually double in size in five years, last year Aston Martin delivered just 4,200 cars; while 11% up on 2013, it was still well short of a 2007 high of 7,300.
In particular, it has missed out on the global boom in SUV sales that has fueled huge Porsche SUV sales and led to the likes of Maserati, Lamborghini and Bentley developing new crossover offerings.
A partnership deal agreed last year with Daimler, whereby A 5% stake of the company was exchanged for access to the German firm’s Mercedes engines and technology, brings hope in the form of beefy AMG engines- suitable for a reworking of the the Lagonda SUV concept that debuted in 2009. Ola Källenius from Mercedes commented on the movement of the AMG into electric and hybrid models, saying that “The SLS AMG Electric Drive is a glimpse of the future” and that “Hybrids are the next logical step, likely in five to seven years”. This could mean big things for Aston Martin and the promise of a competitive line of electric or hybrid models.
On discussing the future of the brand Andrew Palmer, the newest CEO of Aston Martin said “Aston Martin is an iconic brand with tremendous global recognition and potential. The company is at a significant point in its development. Building on our contemporary and relevant product line, we will work hard to extend the company’s global presence while preserving its British heritage and craftsmanship.”