The DB Mark III (also known as the DB 2/4 M III) was created and sold by Aston Martin from 1957 through 1959. It was an evolution of the DB2/4 Mark II model it replaced, using an evolution of that car's W.O. Bentley-designed Lagonda 2.9 L (2922 cc) straight-6 engine. 178 bhp, dual SU carburetors, twin exhaust system, Laycock de Normanville overdrive, independent front suspension with trailing link, coil springs and Armstrong lever dampers, live Salisbury rear axle located by trailing links and transverse Panhard rod, and hydraulic front disc, and Alfin rear drum brakes.
This original left-hand drive example, AM300/3/1643, was originally delivered to William M Crowell MD, 24 Newcastle Rd in Belmont, MA on 11-4-59, making it one the last left hand drive DB MkIII 's delivered in the US. Ken Fullerton of Auto Engineering in Lexington, MA was the selling agent. Auto Engineering was quite well known at the time and prospered into the 1980's. Dr. Crowell was very much a sports car enthusiast having already owned a 356 Carrera, and a 300SL Gullwing and going on to own a Ferrari 250, all sourced from Ken Fullerton at Auto Engineering. We were fortunate to meet and speak with Dr. Crowell's daughter confirming the early history of AM300 3 1643. Ownership directly after Dr. Crowell is unclear. From the early 1970's the Aston was owned by John William Colbert of Fairfax VA who still regularly drove it. In 1981 Ron Taylor of San Diego purchased AM300 3 1643 from Mr Colbert and brought the car to San Diego where it was put in dry storage until 2001 when the current owner acquired it. This lead to the restoration of #00 3 1643.
The car was carefully dissassembled and meticulously restored by Euro Sport Restorations in San Diego, CA using original parts whenever possible. The original, numbers-matching engine was completely rebuilt and a new Tremic 5-speed gearbox was carefully fitted without modifying the car in any way. This makes the car a joy to drive and is significantly more robust and smoother shifting than the original 4-speed gearbox, which was retained and is included in the sale. There was no indication of any previous damage and the car has been resprayed in an original and period correct Aston Martin silver grey metallic color named Moonbeam Grey, and skinned with correct and original Aston maroon colored leather hides. There has been nothing left untouched in the restoration and subsequent road testing, which is now complete. The car was shown at the prestigious Quail show in 2014 and would also be accepted at nearly any top concours in the world.
The landmark DB2, considered the first true postwar Aston Martin, was introduced in May 1950. The ultimate and most highly refined variant, the DB Mark III, debuted in March 1957 and was produced through July 1959, when the DB4 ultimately succeeded it. The DB Mark III featured a hatchback body first seen on the DB2-4. Legendary Aston Martin engineer Tadek Marek thoroughly revised the existing six-cylinder W.O. Bentley/Lagonda engine design, with output rising to 162 bhp or 178 bhp with the optional twin-exhaust system. Front disc brakes supplemented Alfin finned aluminum rear drum brakes, with the upgrade optional on the first 100 DB Mark IIIs and standard on the final Mark IIIB variant of 1958-1959. Styling and body fittings were updated, most notably with a revised grille opening inspired by the DB3S sports racer that provided unmistakable brand continuity and essentially remained in effect through the V-8 models of the late-1980s. The Frank Feeley-revised instrument panel echoed the grilles shape, with the gauges now positioned directly in front of the driver. Only 551 DB Mark IIIs were produced, including one purpose-built competition model, with 462 Coupes and 84 Drophead Coupes built. By virtue of their Feltham-era, hand-built quality and legendary capabilities, each surviving example remains highly coveted today.
Aston Martin enjoyed many competition successes in the fifties. Ray Salvadori and Carol Shelby winning the LeMans 24hr outright in 1959, 1st & 2nd in the 3 litre class, and the 3 litre lap record in 1950. They also had great success in the 1955 Monte Carlo Rally. James Bond drives an Aston Martin DB Mark III in the novel version of Goldfinger, though it is referred to as a DB III in the book, the chapter in which he drives to his famous golf-course encounter with the villain is entitled 'Thoughts in a DB III'. It is the only Bond car in the Ian Fleming novels to have gadgets installed. For the film adaptation five years later, the car was updated to the Aston Martin DB5 model and the array of gadgetry was much expanded. It was to become one of the most iconic of classic cars as a result.
This car is both rare and collectible as one of 462 built 1957-1959. It is the ultimate development of the DB2, the first true postwar Aston Martin and is both original, correct, numbers-matching and has a fresh, painstaking restoration by a well-known California restoration shop with considerable Aston Martin experience. It may be inspected in the San Diego area by appointment.