Who designed the exterior of the DB4?

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Aston Martin DB4
ID 42740333 © Robert Wisdom | Dreamstime.com

The Aston Martin DB4 is a legendary sports car that has captivated car enthusiasts for decades. Known for its sleek lines and timeless design, the DB4 is often considered one of the most beautiful cars ever made. But who was responsible for crafting the stunning exterior of this iconic automobile?

The man behind the DB4’s exquisite design is none other than Carrozzeria Touring Superleggera, an Italian coachbuilding company founded by Felice Bianchi Anderloni. Touring Superleggera was known for its craftsmanship and ability to create lightweight yet elegant bodies for various prestigious automotive brands.

In the late 1950s, Aston Martin was in need of a fresh design to replace its aging DB Mark III. David Brown, the owner of Aston Martin at the time, sought the expertise of Touring Superleggera to create a new car that would not only be sleek and visually appealing but also possess superb aerodynamics.

Carrozzeria Touring Superleggera took up the challenge and assigned the design task to their aerodynamicist, Franco Scaglione. Scaglione was already known in the industry for his work at Bertone, where he had created the legendary Alfa Romeo BAT (Berlinetta Aerodinamica Tecnica) series.

Scaglione began work on the DB4’s design in 1956, focusing on creating an aerodynamically efficient and visually striking body. His mastery of form and function resulted in a harmonious blend of curves and lines, giving the DB4 its timeless beauty. The car featured a long bonnet, a sloping roofline, and a gently tapering rear, culminating in a shape that exuded elegance and speed.

One of the most distinctive design elements Scaglione introduced was the use of the famous Touring Superleggera Superleggera construction technique. This technique involved creating a lightweight body shell using thin alloy panels attached to a lightweight tubular frame. This innovative approach significantly reduced the car’s weight while maintaining structural rigidity.

Completed in 1958, the Aston Martin DB4 made its debut at the Paris Motor Show, stunning audiences with its breathtaking design. The response was overwhelmingly positive, with critics and enthusiasts alike praising the car’s aesthetic appeal and exceptional performance.

Scaglione’s design revolutionized the look of Aston Martin, setting the stage for future iconic models like the DB5 and DB6. His contribution to the DB4’s exterior design remains a testament to his talent and vision as a designer.

The success of the DB4 paved the way for Aston Martin’s future collaborations with various renowned designers, including Zagato and William Towns. However, it was Franco Scaglione and Carrozzeria Touring Superleggera who played a key role in shaping the DB4’s iconic exterior, leaving an indelible mark on the automotive world.

Today, the DB4 is considered a classic collectible with its timeless styling and rarity. It stands as a testament to the collaboration between Touring Superleggera and Aston Martin, showcasing the influence of Italian design on one of Britain’s most beloved automotive brands.

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