Stroll led a bailout of Aston Martin last year during which Mercedes-Benz took a 20 per cent stake of the company, leading to the possibility of some future manufacturing ending up in Germany. However, Stroll confirmed to the FT that, “the SUV will be built in Wales and the sports car will be built in Gaydon”.
The question of where future Aston models, especially electrified ones, would be built has been doing the rounds since the takeover. The British car maker already uses Mercedes technology in its latest models and without a bespoke EV platform of its own, will likely borrow from Mercedes to a lesser or greater extent.
Batteries, especially, could come from Merc, though Stroll stated that Aston Martin was “looking at all options”.
It’s Aston’s ambition that its first battery electric cars will roll off the production line in 2025 – in good time for the government’s ban on new petrol and diesel sales from 2030. Between now and 2025 the brand will be adding electrified models to its line-up with a hybrid version of the DBX SUV arriving later this year. It’ll then be another two years until the next hybrid Aston Martins become available, however.
In the FT interview, Lawrence Stroll affirmed that the company is “way ahead of our rivals, and all because of our partnership with Mercedes”. Assuming he means fellow British sports car brands such as Bentley and McLaren, he’s sort of correct. Bentley already has a plug-in hybrid Bentayga in its line-up and announced at the end of last year that it would be a fully electric brand by 2026.
In contrast, McLaren hasn’t set out a timeline for electrification beyond the launch of its Artura plug-in hybrid supercar, which has the PHEV drive more for performance than any real desire to be ‘green’.
As for the forthcoming Aston Martin EVs, there’s not a huge amount to report as designs haven’t been finalised. However, Stroll stated that; “We will have a front engine version of a DB11/Vantage, and an SUV higher four-wheel drive one, but we don’t know the names yet.”
He was quick to point out that the exterior and interior designs, suspension and vehicle dynamics which define Aston Martin’s models would be maintained on the EVs.
We expect more details of the hybrid DBX to emerge in the next few months, so watch this space.