Used 2012 Aston Martin DBS

2012 Aston Martin DBS
List Price Estimate
$72,546 - $101,267

Pros & Cons

  • Ferocious V12 power
  • surprisingly livable for road trips
  • exquisite interior
  • muscular take on Aston Martin's trademark styling.
  • Pricey compared to DB9
  • limited passenger-seat movement
  • steering could use more feel, small trunk.
Aston Martin DBS years
2012
Aston Martin DBS for Sale

Edmunds' Expert Review

The 2012 Aston Martin DBS sits atop the Aston Martin price list of standard production cars for a very good reason: They just don't build anything sexier or faster.

Vehicle overview

The front-engine rear-wheel-drive sports car was once at the pinnacle of motorsports. Then clever engineers realized the benefits of locating the engine amidships and racecars and exotic road cars have never looked the same--except at Aston Martin. Squint at the 2012 Aston Martin DBS and you can see all the way back to 1959 when the Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato first appeared. Credit goes to that infamous British perseverance. The Aston Martin DBS still adheres to that traditional layout, but with decidedly modern looks and unquestionably advanced technology beneath.

The DBS's mighty 6.0-liter V12 might not be the most powerful engine in the realm of sports cars, but there are precious few engines that sound as sweet. With only 3,700 pounds to propel down the road, we can assure you that it is sufficiently potent. Also, by combining the transmission and the limited-slip differential into a transaxle unit, the front/rear weight distribution is nearly perfect--so much for slant-nosed mid-engine exotics. The DBS retains the classic long-hood short-deck Coke-bottle shape that never grows old, but its bulging fenders and gaping grille have been optimized for cooling and aerodynamics as well.

The structure beneath the composite, aluminum, and carbon-fiber body panels and ventilated hood is thoroughly modern. Pressed, extruded, and cast aluminum components are bonded together to create an extremely rigid platform that allows the sophisticated adaptive suspension to work as it was intended. Monotube dampers function within five separate modes to modify the DBS's ride and handling characteristics. Tremendously powerful, standard carbon-ceramic brake discs measure nearly 16-inches in front and 14-inches at the rear and are gripped by 6-piston and 4-piston calipers respectively.

The made-to-order interior reveals an equally obsessive attention to detail. Adorned with flawless leather and faux suede, plus accents of aluminum, carbon fiber, piano-black wood, and glass buttons, every inch of the cabin is a miniature study in true quality and tasteful execution.

Peers? There are only a few. The Ferrari 599 is designed and built in much the same way as the Aston Martin, and it will likely outperform the DBS, but cost more. The Bentley Continental GT Speed is equally luxurious inside, but it lacks elegance on the outside. Finally, the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG will command as much attention as the DBS, but its driving dynamics are sterile in comparison. In a world where we often hear, "They just don't make them like they used to," we're glad Aston Martin still does. The 2012 Aston Martin DBS may look like a modern take on a retro design, but its sexy flanks hide more technology and fierce potential than one might imagine.

Aston Martin DBS models

The 2012 Aston Martin DBS is available in coupe and convertible (DBS Volante) body styles. Both coupe and convertible can be ordered with a comprehensive Carbon Black trim package. Two seats are standard, although you can have the standard rear parcel shelves replaced by two tiny seats as an option.

Standard equipment includes 20-inch wheels, an electronically adjustable suspension, carbon-ceramic brakes, xenon headlights, front and rear parking sensors, automatic power-folding outside mirrors, glass-faced switch gear, cruise control, a heated eight-way power driver seat with memory functions, a heated four-way power passenger seat, leather/faux suede upholstery (full leather in Volante), a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, Bluetooth, a Garmin-based navigation system and a 10-speaker 1,000-Watt Bang & Olufsen surround-sound audio system with an in-dash six-CD changer, an auxiliary audio jack and an iPod interface. The Volante convertible features a fully powered soft top and hard tonneau cover. Both coupe and convertible also come with an umbrella in the "boot." How very British.

Major options include the aforementioned Carbon Black treatment (unique paint, wheels, brake calipers, interior trim, paddle-shifted automatic, and 6-way lightweight seats), seven wheel designs, upgraded performance tires, a suede-trimmed steering wheel, lightweight carbon-fiber/Kevlar seats, and satellite radio. There are a number of customization options including piano-black interior trim, personalized sill plates, full leather upholstery, a custom-fit leather saddlebag in place of rear jump seats, and special-order paint colors. Our favorite option: We know of no other carmaker that offers a wristwatch transponder that replaces the remote key fob. Of course, Aston Martin teamed with Swiss Jaeger-LeCoultre for this pricey James Bond-inspired accessory.

2012 Highlights

A Garmin navigation system replaces last year's nav unit, and beam-blade wipers are standard. Brake calipers still come in standard black, but now you can order them in gray, red or yellow as well.

Performance & mpg

The 2012 Aston Martin DBS is powered by a 6.0-liter V12 that produces 510 hp and 420 pound-feet of torque. A rear-mounted six-speed manual transaxle is standard, while a six-speed automatic with shift paddles on the steering wheel is optional. Aston Martin estimates the DBS coupe will accelerate from zero to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 4.3 seconds and achieve a top speed of 191 mph (limited to "just" 183 mph for the automatic transmission). The EPA estimates the manual-equipped DBS should earn 11 mpg city/17 mpg highway/13 mpg combined and the automatic, 12/18/13 mpg respectively.

Safety

The 2012 DBS comes with a fair amount of safety equipment for an exotic sports car. Stability and traction control are standard, along with antilock carbon-ceramic disc brakes. Side airbags and front and rear parking sensors are standard. The convertible Volante features tilt sensors, pop-up roll hoops, and A-pillars that are said to withstand more than twice the weight of the car itself. Official government crash tests have yet to be conducted, but if you are to believe the James Bond movie Casino Royale, a DBS coupe can flip nine times and allegedly, the driver survives. So there's that.

Driving

The 2012 Aston Martin DBS is surprisingly easy to drive. The clutch effort is light and the pedal travel is short, while the shift lever snick-snicks through the gates with precision. The steering is friction-free and the cabin's decent visibility makes it feel less intimidating than some other exotics. Not only is it easy to handle, the DBS is also surprisingly comfortable. Although the ride is firmer than the DB9's, the DBS is never punishing due to the 5-mode adaptive dampers. The optional automatic transmission may not be as engaging as the automated manuals found in competitors, but it's also a lot smoother in everyday driving.

Of course, the 510 hp flowing to the rear wheels of this 3,737-pound coupe means the DBS is still a car that must be shown respect. Even a dollop of excessive throttle will get the tail wagging in the corners even with nearly two feet of rear tire rubber on the ground. Thankfully, the stability and traction control systems offer three settings: default on, a more permissive track setting, and fully off for those who dare.

The DBS seems more at home on long, high-speed sweepers than in tight hairpins. In any setting, the electric-assisted power steering offers little feel but impressive precision. If you want a balance between grand touring comfort and hard-core driving histrionics, the DBS is it.

Interior

The interior of the 2012 DBS is one of the finest examples of English craftsmanship. It's difficult to find a surface not covered in soft leather or faux suede. Subtle carbon-fiber trim lines the doors, while tasteful alloy trim and optional piano-black trim (a must-have) adorn the center console.

For 2012, most of the buttons on the center console are fashioned from glass, which is certainly a swanky touch, while the layout of those buttons, with its central LCD, is adapted from Volvo and is a user-friendly and attractive interface. We've yet to sample the new-for-2012 navigation system, but it must be better than the one it replaced.

Although they look exquisite, the gauges are another point of contention. Not only do the speedometer and tachometer rotate in opposite directions (the tach spins counter-clockwise), but also the speedo features such a huge range (up to 220 mph) that spans just 2/3 of the dial itself that you have to rely on the redundant digital readout in the trip computer for a precise rate of progress.

Pack light because the trunk holds only five cubic-feet of luggage. And at just 78 cubic-feet of total interior passenger volume, the DBS is classified as a minicompact. Surprisingly, even tall drivers will find plenty of head- and legroom in the DBS, although the passenger seat annoyingly doesn't adjust for height. Finally, the optional rear jump seats are not intended for adult passengers.

Scorecard

Overallundefined / 5

Consumer reviews

There are no consumer reviews for the 2012 Aston Martin DBS.

Trending topics in reviews




    Features & Specs

    2dr Coupe features & specs
    2dr Coupe
    5.9L 12cyl 6A
    MPG 12 city / 18 hwy
    Seats 2
    6-speed shiftable automatic
    Gas
    510 hp @ 6500 rpm

    2dr Coupe features & specs
    2dr Coupe
    5.9L 12cyl 6M
    MPG 11 city / 17 hwy
    Seats 2
    6-speed manual
    Gas
    510 hp @ 6500 rpm

    Carbon Black 2dr Coupe features & specs
    Carbon Black 2dr Coupe
    5.9L 12cyl 6A
    MPG 12 city / 18 hwy
    Seats 4
    6-speed shiftable automatic
    Gas
    510 hp @ 6500 rpm

    Carbon Black 2dr Coupe features & specs
    Carbon Black 2dr Coupe
    5.9L 12cyl 6M
    MPG 11 city / 17 hwy
    Seats 4
    6-speed manual
    Gas
    510 hp @ 6500 rpm

    See all Used 2012 Aston Martin DBS features & specs

    FAQ

    Is the Aston Martin DBS a good car?

    The Edmunds experts tested the 2012 DBS both on the road and at the track. You probably care about Aston Martin DBS fuel economy, so it's important to know that the DBS gets an EPA-estimated 13 mpg to 14 mpg, depending on the configuration. What about cargo capacity? When you're thinking about carrying stuff in your new car, keep in mind that the DBS has 6.6 cubic feet of trunk space. And then there's safety and reliability. Edmunds has all the latest NHTSA and IIHS crash-test scores, plus industry-leading expert and consumer reviews to help you understand what it's like to own and maintain a Aston Martin DBS. Learn more

    Is the Aston Martin DBS reliable?

    To determine whether the Aston Martin DBS is reliable, read Edmunds' authentic consumer reviews, which come from real owners and reveal what it's like to live with the DBS. Look for specific complaints that keep popping up in the reviews, and be sure to compare the DBS's average consumer rating to that of competing vehicles. Learn more

    Is the 2012 Aston Martin DBS a good car?

    There's a lot to consider if you're wondering whether the 2012 Aston Martin DBS is a good car. Safety scores, fuel economy, cargo capacity and feature availability should all be factors in determining whether the 2012 DBS is a good car for you. Check back soon for the official Edmunds Rating from our expert testing team Learn more

    How much should I pay for a 2012 Aston Martin DBS?

    The least-expensive 2012 Aston Martin DBS is the 2012 Aston Martin DBS 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6M). Including destination charge, it arrives with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of about $275,461.

    Other versions include:

    • 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6A) which starts at $275,861
    • 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6M) which starts at $275,461
    • Carbon Black 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6A) which starts at $284,976
    • Carbon Black 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6M) which starts at $284,576
    Learn more

    What are the different models of Aston Martin DBS?

    If you're interested in the Aston Martin DBS, the next question is, which DBS model is right for you? DBS variants include 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6A), 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6M), Carbon Black 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6A), and Carbon Black 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6M). For a full list of DBS models, check out Edmunds’ Features & Specs page. Learn more

    More about the 2012 Aston Martin DBS

    Used 2012 Aston Martin DBS Overview

    The Used 2012 Aston Martin DBS is offered in the following submodels: DBS Coupe, DBS Convertible. Available styles include Volante 2dr Convertible (5.9L 12cyl 6M), Volante Carbon Black 2dr Convertible (5.9L 12cyl 6A), 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6A), Volante Carbon Black 2dr Convertible (5.9L 12cyl 6M), 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6M), Volante 2dr Convertible (5.9L 12cyl 6A), Carbon Black 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6A), and Carbon Black 2dr Coupe (5.9L 12cyl 6M).

    What do people think of the 2012 Aston Martin DBS?

    Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2012 Aston Martin DBS and all its trim types. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2012 DBS.

    Edmunds Expert Reviews

    Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2012 Aston Martin DBS and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2012 DBS featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

    Our Review Process

    This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

    We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

    What's a good price for a New 2012 Aston Martin DBS?

    Which 2012 Aston Martin DBSES are available in my area?

    Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2012 Aston Martin DBS for sale near. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2012 Aston Martin DBS.

    Can't find a new 2012 Aston Martin DBSs you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

    Find a new Aston Martin DBS for sale - 4 great deals out of 16 listings starting at $13,471.

    Find a new Aston Martin for sale - 2 great deals out of 7 listings starting at $10,016.

    Why trust Edmunds?

    Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including rich, trim-level features and specs information like: MSRP, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, heated seating, cooled seating, cruise control, parking assistance, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats ,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, wheel tire, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, engine torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy (city, highway, combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (length, width, seating capacity, cargo space), car safety, true cost to own. Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, fuel economy, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds rating, and color.

    Should I lease or buy a 2012 Aston Martin DBS?

    Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

    Check out Aston Martin lease specials