2017 Aston Martin DB11

2017 Aston Martin DB11

Episode 3702
Auto Value and Bumper to BumperTire Rack "The Way Tire Buying Should Be"

While other luxury brands may be all about seeking attention with pomp and circumstance, weekly press releases, and celebrity endorsements; Aston Martin just keeps plugging away and doing their own thing, on their own terms. That means all-new cars are few and far between, and worthy of celebration all on their own. So let’s get the party started with this all-new DB11!

People seem to forget that the Aston-Martin brand has been in the biz for over a hundred years, and while they aren’t necessarily changing the way they do things, there are now more new products in the pipeline than at any time in recent memory. And, this 2017 DB11 kicks it off in style.

While there is still a legendary V12 under the hood, and the proportions remain similar to recent Astons, the look is certainly a quick step towards the future. With a modern take on the classic Aston grille, it’s simply a gorgeous car; some staffers even remarking it’s the most beautiful rolling stock they’re eyes have ever seen.

It has the paint finish of a high dollar custom hot rod, simply flawless; and no exterior badging to distract you from its beautiful lines. 

What looks to be just trim tacked on to create a floating roof, is actually an Aeroblade that funnels air through the C-pillar for added downforce. There’s no doubt this car looks fantastic from any angle. 

And lurking beneath all of those curves is an all-new aluminum chassis; using a mix of pressings, extrusions, and castings, to achieve a new level of stiffness without increasing weight.

Going further “next level” is a new 5.2-liter twin-turbo V12 replacing the DB9’s 5.9-liter naturally-aspirated unit. It’s not only a first for the brand, but the engine is their own design. This twelve delivers 600–horsepower and 516 lb-ft. of torque and can sound as nasty or as quiet as you want it to be. It’s tucked behind the front wheels to help keep weight more centered.  

If things in the center stack look familiar, it’s because they were sourced from Mercedes-Benz. The leather and wood surfaces all around it however, are clearly a step above, exuding hand-crafted individuality.

Nestling our commoner hindquarters in those luxurious front seats had us feeling like real high rollers. We didn’t even attempt to cram into the back ones.   

You won’t find a shifter in here, rather P, R, N, and D buttons bookending the start button in the center stack. 

A full-color 12-inch TFT gauge panel, features unique virtual instruments; but between the big tach right in the center of it, and the large shift paddles behind the wheel, you get a sense that there’s a lot more here than just posh and circumstance. 

It may not be the fastest car on the road, but it sure feels like it when you punch the gas. It delivers everything it has right from the get-go, and the 8-speed automatic transmission swiftly puts it to good use. Yet it all happens in an incredibly refined way.   

It does feel big behind the wheel, not so much a nimble toss-around toy; but very much like a large, smooth, and very posh mile-eating machine. Aston gives you plenty of options for finding your comfort zone, as you can adjust the suspension independent of the dynamic driving modes. 

Even if we don’t really have the roads in this country to get the full appreciation of what the DB11 has to offer, you’ll enjoy the experience no matter what road you find yourself on. It oozes upper crust, but in an inclusive way that makes you want to be a member of whatever club it takes to own one of these. 

Priced at $214,820 to start, this kind of luxury motoring costs dearly. But dare we say, it feels very much worth it, feeling more prestigious and a step up from rivals at that price point. 

That’s because Aston Martin considers themselves more than just a car company, but a maker of luxury goods. And like any true indulgence item, they’re not necessarily going out of their way to attract new customers; rather keeping those accustomed to breathing this rarified air coming back for more.

The 2017 DB11 is a supremely luxurious and competent product for those who know what to look for in a Grand Touring automobile. A fitting car to usher in a whole new era for a brand that we can’t wait to experience again and again.

Specifications

  • Engine: 5.2 liter
  • Horsepower: 600
  • Torque: 516 lb-ft.
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge 3/4 Front

2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge

Big Changes for Volvo’s Smallest SUV

Episode 4337
Auto Value and Bumper to BumperTire Rack "The Way Tire Buying Should Be"

Volvo’s march towards full electrification is well underway, and it doesn’t look like anything will stop it. Now, there are currently four fully-electric SUVs you can reserve on their website. However, only two have made it onto our streets here in the U.S. including their first EV, the XC40 Recharge. Which, as it turns out, continues to get better and better.

The 2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge started out as just the plain old XC40 back in 2019. It then acquired the Recharge signifier in 2021 when it became the brand’s first full battery-electric vehicle here in the U.S., not to be confused with the XC40 Recharge PHEV… Plug-In Hybrid… which unfortunately is not sold here.
Got all that? Good, let’s talk about what has changed recently to make the XC40 Recharge EV better than ever.

It may look mostly the same as when we last saw it back in 2021, but it did get some styling tweaks last year, and underneath that skin, and all the vegan and recycled materials, are some big changes for 20-24.
Foremost is a bigger battery. It comes in a new two-wheel-drive version of the XC40. Up to now, all XC40 Recharges have been all-wheel drive. With just a single 185 kilowatt motor rated at 248 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque and a larger 82 kilowatt-hour battery pack, range jumps from the previous max of 223 miles to 293.

2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Dead Front
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge 3/4 Front
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Headlight
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Volvo Badge
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Profile
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Rear Profile
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Stamped Name
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge 3/4 Rear
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Dead Rear
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Taillight
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Badge
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Dead Front2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge 3/4 Front2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Headlight2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Volvo Badge2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Profile2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Rear Profile2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Stamped Name2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge 3/4 Rear2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Dead Rear2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Taillight2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Badge

Now, we put it to the test on a cold and rainy spring day, and fell well short of that max number. But our pace of 251-miles, at the end of our driving loop, was still a significant improvement.

Twin-motor all-wheel-drive XC40s keep the same 78 kilowatt-hour battery as before, but also take advantage of that new rear motor, as well as get an upgraded front motor too. New software treats that front motor as more of a traction assist to be used only when needed.

Power built more gradually, more like a traditional ICE powertrain. We’ve been seeing that approach from other EV makers recently as well, and we’re onboard with that.

So, range is up for it too, now rated at 254 miles. Full one-pedal driving is also included. XC40s with the extended range battery have a charging upgrade too, now taking up to 200-kilowatt DC fast charging for an 80% charge in 28 minutes.

As for charging off the starting line at our test track, it certainly didn’t have the rush of acceleration that the twin-motor displays. Power built more gradually, more like a traditional ICE powertrain. We’ve been seeing that approach from other EV makers recently as well, and we’re onboard with that.

2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Dashboard
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Steering Wheel
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Central Display
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Volume Knob
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Digital Cluster
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Central Display Alt
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Shifter
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Front Seat
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge 7
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Rear Seat
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Rear Climate
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Trunk
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Harmon Kardon Speaker
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Door Interior
2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Dashboard2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Steering Wheel2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Central Display2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Volume Knob2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Digital Cluster2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Central Display Alt2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Shifter2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Front Seat2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge 72024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Rear Seat2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Rear Climate2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Trunk2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Harmon Kardon Speaker2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge Door Interior

Once full power did arrive, we hit 60 in a still quite quick 6.4 seconds; and power delivery stayed strong throughout the quarter-mile instead of tapering off like many EVs do. The full quarter-mile catapult ended in 15.2 seconds at 92 miles-per-hour.

Volvo has also tweaked the suspension to provide a smoother ride on the street, but with the same low center of gravity as before, combined with rear-wheel drive, the XC40 Recharge felt more than capable through our handling course.

Nothing really changes inside. All occupants are met with a pretty plush yet very practical design. That means great materials, good comfort front and rear, and Volvo’s Google-based infotainment system.

XC40 Recharges are available in 3 trim levels: Core, Plus, and Ultimate, with all three now available in either rear or all-wheel drive. With the Twin Motor now essentially a $1,750 option, prices range from the base Single Motor Core’s $53,745 to top Twin Motor Ultimate at $61,845.

With a comprehensive powertrain and drivetrain makeover, the 2024 Volvo XC40 Recharge accomplishes more than just offering more range and more options for buyers, it has become a more compelling EV choice than ever.

Specifications

As Tested

  • Motor Setup: single rear (185-kW)
  • Battery Size: 82-kWh
  • Horsepower: 248
  • Torque: 310 lb-ft.
  • EPA Range: 293 Miles
  • 0-60 mph: 6.4 seconds
  • 1/4 Mile: 15.2 seconds at 92 mph
  • 60-0 Braking: 116 feet (avg)
  • MW Range: 252 Miles
  • Efficiency: 32 kWh/100 miles