|Aston Martin - 1913 to 2013|
2013 sees Aston Martin celebrate its centenary with a year-long calendar of exceptional events. The globally-renowned British luxury sports car maker will mark its first 100 years with a series of UK and international celebrations highlighting the unique success of the brand worldwide. Where did it all begin?
On 15 January 1913, Lionel Martin and Robert Bamford founded a new automotive venture.
They called their company Bamford & Martin which later became Aston Martin, acknowledging Robert Bamford’s success at the Aston Clinton Hillclimb in Buckinghamshire, where he had successfully raced their very first cars.
Bamford and Martin began their business in Chelsea’s Henniker Mews in London, becoming well known as providers of sporting machines to enthusiastic racers and discerning enthusiasts.
In the century that followed Aston Martin has come to represent many things, from sporting prowess through to technical innovation, beautiful design, fine craftsmanship and superior performance.
In Aston Martin's first 90 years the company built fewer than 15,000 cars. The open bodied two-seater sports specials of the pre-war years gave way to the David Brown era of the 1950s and beyond which saw the introduction of the legendary DB2/4, DB4, DB5, DB6 and DBS, before the V8 Vantage and Virage led Aston Martin to the DB7, original Vanquish and on into the modern era.
A second celebration sees Aston Martin mark its first decade at Gaydon, in Warwickshire, moving in to its purpose-built premises on 3 January 2003. Since that date Aston Martin, overseen by CEO Dr Ulrich Bez, has produced 45,000 cars to huge critical and commercial acclaim.
The original DB9 and Vantage were joined by the Rapide, DBS, Virage and now the timeless new DB9 and ultimate GT, the Vanquish – Aston Martin's latest flagship sports car.
Aston Martin is, too, no longer focused on the domestic market but an international player, exporting 75% of its annual production around the world to 146 dealerships in 41 countries.
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