A beauty and a beast by Zagato Milano | Hexagon, Classic and Sports Cars
Hexagon, Classic and Sports Cars

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A beauty and a beast, the Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato Sanction III, which was originally introduced in October 1960 at the London Motor Show was effectively a DB4 GT, lightened and improved by Zagato Milano and designed by Ercole Spada.

The most prominent DB4 GT Zagatos, affectionately known by the registration plates they share, 1 VEV and 2 VEV, were both raced under John Ogier's Essex Racing Stable, with assistance from the Aston Martin factory. Both the Zagatos raced in the 1961 24 Hours of Le Mans. However, a repeat of Aston Martin's 1959 Le Mans victory was not to be, with both cars retiring. In July 1961 at a British Grand Prix Support race, the Zagato had its first victory with 2 VEV taking the last lap lead from a Jaguar E Type.
The popularity of the original DB4 GT Zagato has resulted in two subsequent waves of road-going cars based on DB4s being rendered into "Zagatos" through the cooperation of Aston Martin and the Zagato works in Italy. They are known as "Sanction II" and "Sanction III" cars. In 1988, four unutilized chassis numbers were used for these Sanction II cars. With the approval of Aston Martin, the four DB4 chassis were appropriately uprated to GT specifications. These chassis were then sent to Zagato's Milan workshop to be bodied like the originals, with a smaller oval grille, without the stock DB4 GT's rear tail fins, and with a smoothed out rear end.  These 'Works Approved Replicas' were known as the Sanction II cars. They were outwardly identical, but several changes were made in the interest of improving handling, included thicker anti-roll bars and adjustable suspension.  Changes to the Sanction II cars included a larger engine capacity, increasing from 3.7 litres to 4.2 litres and fitment of 15-inch 6J Borrani chromed wire wheels. The acceleration was greatly improved by these upgrades.

The first of the four GT specification rolling chassis were delivered to Zagato in January 1989 and the fourth in April of the same year. With all being completed by July 1991, these cars were then given their own chassis numbers appropriate to the 1960s.  The Zagato factory still had two spare body shells left over after producing the Sanction II Zagatos, so in 1992 Richard S. Williams approached the Executive Chairman of Aston Martin Lagonda Ltd, Walter Hayes, and sought approval for the spare body shells to be used to create two further 'Sanction' cars, to be constructed and road registered.  Walter Hayes gave his approval and the body shells along with two neglected Aston Martin DB4's (chassis' DB4/334/R and DB4/424/R) were completed into a pair of Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato Sanction III’s in the years 1999 and 2000. The two final Zagatos had an engine capacity of 4.7 litres and produced 359 lb/ft of torque at 4000 rpm, making them the most powerful DB4 GT Zagatos ever produced. They were dubbed Sanction III cars by Aston Martin Heritage and are naturally included in the Zagato Register.

Just emerged from long term ownership, Hexagon Classics are delighted to offer this special Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato Sanction III that is now available for the first time in 12 years, complete with a valuable cherished registration number. With service history and invoices from Aston Engineering, and recent recommissioning works this DB4 GT Zagato Sanction III is all ready to be enjoyed.

Find out more about this truly special car here: