History was made on 2 March 1969, when Concorde 001 embarked on her ‘faultless’ maiden voyage. Departing from Toulouse Airport and landing just 27 minutes later, pilot André Turcat announced to the waiting press: ‘Finally, the big bird flies, and I can say now that it flies pretty well.’
From the moment Concorde officially entered service in 1976 to her retirement in 2003, she was an icon. A technical marvel created by Sud Aviation (later Aérospatiale) and the British Aircraft Corporation (BAC), Concorde’s streamlined, futuristic silhouette and supersonic capabilities were unsurpassed. Concorde was the world’s first supersonic passenger airliner, capable of travelling at more than twice the speed of sound, making a one-way trip from London to New York possible in a little over three hours.
To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Concorde, Aston Martin has announced an extra-special edition of its elegant Grand Tourer DBS Superleggera. The luxury marque’s Q bespoke division has unveiled the DBS Superleggera Concorde Edition, which takes design inspiration from the iconic aircraft with a painted exterior incorporating Concorde’s signature red, white and blue colour scheme and a black carbon-fibre roof. Not only does the car pay homage to the spirit of Concorde in its design, but it also incorporates actual parts of the aircraft for a truly unique and innovative release.
These features include titanium from compressor blades used across British Airways’ supersonic fleet, and paddle shifters made from the original Concorde metal. The DBS is powered by a 5.2-litre twin-turbo V12, taking the supercar to a top speed of 211mph. Unsurprisingly, the release is strictly limited, with just 10 examples, which will be rolled out in October 2020. The cars will be available to purchase exclusively from Aston Martin Bristol, which is located just a few miles from RAF Filton, the airstrip where Concorde touched down for the final time on 26 November 2003.
Upholding the values of British engineering, Aston Martin has pledged to donate a portion of proceeds from the sale of each DBS Superleggera Concorde Edition to the Air League Trust, a not-for-profit organisation that teaches underprivileged children how to fly and work in engineering.
Aston Martin DBS Superleggera Concorde Edition, £321,350; astonmartin.com