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Country of origin:Great Britain
Produced from:1960 - 1962
Numbers built:19
Introduced at:1960 London Motor Show
Designed by:Ercole Spada for Zagato
Author:Wouter Melissen
Last updated:November 23, 2015
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Click here to download printer friendly versionTowards the end of the 1950s, the production car based GT racing became increasingly more popular. Short for Grand Touring or Gran Turismo, a GT was generally accepted to be a sporty two door road car. Above all, it offered wealthy enthusiasts an easy way into motor racing without having to purchase the highly complex and expensive sports prototypes. At the end of that decade there were various championships for GT cars and most importantly in 1959 a GT class was first introduced in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Aston Martin had won that year's race outright and decided to cut back on the expensive motor racing program. Building a GT racer for their customers meant that the company's name would still represented in races like Le Mans without having to shell out the big bucks to prepare and race the cars.

A few months before winning Le Mans, Aston Martin had introduced the all new DB4, which came equipped with a racing car derived engine and Touring's very light 'Superleggera' body. The company figured it would for the perfect basis for the new customer racing car. Most of the mechanicals were retained, although beefed up in areas to survive the stresses of racing. The 3.6 litre engine was given a power treatment and output for the racing car rose from 240 bhp to a claimed 302 bhp. Bolted to a new close ratio 4-speed gearbox, the potent engine was installed in a shortened DB4 chassis and the DB4 GT was born. Although not homologated yet, the DB4 GT debuted in May of 1959 and Stirling Moss drove it to its maiden. It must be said; against modest competition.

Production of the DB4 GT started late in 1959 with many of the customers taking delivery at the start of the 1960 racing season. They faced the might of Ferrari, who had just upped the ante considerably by replacing the aging long wheelbase 250 GT with a brand new short wheelbase version. Despite its smaller engine, the light and nimble Ferrari frequently outdid the Aston Martins. Through the backdoor Aston Martin did offer some support to selected privateers and in particular to John Ogier's 'Essex Racing Stable'. In 1960 he received a special version of the DB4 GT, that was lighter still than the regular cars. Moss and Jack Sears both scored wins in these, but usually in the British 'Closed Cars' races where they faced large Jaguars. The Ferraris did come to Britain for the Tourist Trophy at Goodwood and in a Ferrari this time, Moss took a win ahead of Roy Salvadori and Innes Ireland in two Astons.

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  Article Image gallery (194) Chassis (9) Specifications User Comments (5)