Aston Martin DBX SUV goes testing

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With the DBX being Aston Martin's first-ever SUV, the company has had to develop a whole new testing regime for the auto, different to what it employs when developing its grand tourers.

Aston notes that the DBX required a new test program, which makes sense, and that it "will perform with the verve and poise of a true Aston Martin", but also "will extend into areas previously off-limits to the marque's sporting roots".

The first development DBX prototype is being put through its paces along a demanding Welsh Rally stage in the hands of the company's chief engineer, Matt Becker. After making its world debut three years ago as a concept vehicle, the all-new DBX is now closer to becoming a reality.

Like rival high-end SUV manufacturers, Aston Martin felt the need to take the DBX prototype to places owners would probably never drive them in real life.

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As befits Aston's sporty status, the DBX's grille is distinctively related to models such as the DB11 and Vantage, while the rear quarters could be favourably compared to Alfa Romeo's swift SUV the Stelvio.

Aston Martin plan to test the Aston Martin DBX in the Arctic, the Middle East and on the Nürburgring Nordschleife, a fairly normal circuit for any production auto. It's going to go up some of the world's harshest environments - from the Arctic to the deserts of the Middle East.

Becker said: "As an engineer, it's genuinely exciting to get a feel for the auto you're working to create". Jag's got an SUV; so does Rolls-Royce, Bentley and Lamborghini. At back, the concept's horizontal taillights are replaced with what looks like vertical units, while the tailgate is more conventional and as the doors suggest, are more practical to use as well.

Speaking of power, this DBX will get a standard powertrain, probably the 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 from the rest of the lineup, but look for alternative powertrains coming in the next few years too.

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