Classics for sale: 1989 Aston Martin Volante Zagato

The Aston Martin Volante Zagato wasn't to everyone's taste, but it is a very rare thing today. This car is just one of 12 right-hand drive examples

Aston Martin has produced some of the most beautiful cars to ever hit the road. The British brand has frequently collaborated with coachbuilders throughout its history to create what can only be described as automotive art.

Some of its best work has been with Italian designer Zagato — think DB4 GT Zagato. During the 1980s the pair forged a car that was to be forward thinking with a modern design. The Aston Martin Volante Zagato might not be as pretty as past Aston-Zagato offerings, but it is very rare.

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Listed with Hexagon Cars for £345,000 is one of only 12 right-hand drive Volante Zagatos ever made. It cost its original owner £190,000 back in 1989 but today its value is considerably higher. This automatic example is finished in Salisbury Blue and has covered just 6603 miles with its two previous owners.

Initially Aston Martin gave the world 52 Zagato coupés, of which all were sold for a substantial sum. Soon after a convertible Volante variant was conceived with just 37 being made, something that irritated coupé owners as the drop-top was now the greater collectors' item.

The car was based on the Aston Martin V8 but featured increased performance via a 430bhp version of the V8 engine. A standard V8 model was said to be capable of 160mph, but the equivalent Zagato was quoted as a 186mph machine.

The Volante did have a 35kg weight handicap over the coupé model, but it made up for it with some interesting design features. As well as removing the roof from the alloy-bodied hard-top car, the Italian designers gave the Volante a new grille and unique 'eye-lids' that covered the headlights when not in use. The angular shape of both the coupé and Volante cars was intended as a modern homage to the curvaceous DB4 GT Zagato.

Looks are subjective and regardless of your opinion, many people quite liked the design at the time. One such person was actor Rowan Atkinson, who bought the very first right-hand drive V8 Zagato from its original owner in 1998.

For more information on this car, visit the AutoClassics advert.

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