1987 ASTON MARTIN V8 Volante

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1987 ASTON MARTIN V8 Volante


The Aston Martins that followed on from the DB6 were very obviously from the pen of a different designer.

They took their aesthetic cues from the design zeitgeist of the 60s and 70s, not the 40s and 50s. They also tipped an unapologetic and undisguised nod to America’s muscle cars – the Ford Mustang in particular.

After the DB6 came the DBS, still with a six-cylinder engine and patiently awaiting the arrival of a V8 that promised to give the car the grunt to go with the grace.

The V8 proved to be well worth waiting for. It was a proper muscle car and one that owed its squat, steroidal stance and sleekly aggressive profile to the design pen of Aston’s William Towns.

The engine was designed by Polish émigré Tadek Marek, a man whose inimitable engineering imprint stretches from the DBR2 racing car engine, through the redesign of Aston’s venerable, Bentley-derived straight-six, to the development of the 5.3-litre V8 for the DBS V8 in 1969.

Several iterations later, this fabulous powerplant only reluctantly retired once it had motored into the new millennium, bulked up to 600bhp, and propelled the Vantage 600 to speeds reputedly in excess of 200mph.

The Vehicle

Today’s example comes to us from 1987, making this V8 a member of the Series 5 generation of Aston V8s. Introduced to the world at the New York International Auto Show, the greatest change for the Series 5 was the transition from carburetors to fuel-injection. No longer needing extra space for carburetors, the hood scoop seen on many of the prior generations was no longer necessary, and the profile became much sleeker as a result. 405 Series 5 V8s were constructed, and 216 units were V8 Volantes.

On the Outside

Finished in Dover White, this V8 Volante is in solid condition. However, there are some blemishes that need pointing out. First off, and most noticeable, is a sizable dent in the front bumper right next to the passenger side headlight. Next, the passenger side rear view mirror appears to be just barely clinging to the car. Lastly, there appears to be blue masking tape at the bottom of each door. What the tape is meant to protect is unclear to us. Everything else on the car has been nicely preserved. Chrome is straight and showing no major wrinkles, glass is clean and free of major chips or cracks, and the OEM wheels are in nice shape although they would benefit from some touching up. Remaining tire tread looks fair at best, and we highly recommend a new set.

On the Inside

Draped with black leather, the interior to this Volante looks like quite a pleasant place to pass the time. Up top, the inside of the convertible top shows light staining, but the headliner is hanging tightly in place much like the sun visors. Black leather seats were thoughtfully equipped with red piping to add a wonderful touch of color to the interior. Although the black leather appears to have slightly faded over the years, there are no major holes or tears in the material to speak of. The same can be said of the rear seats as well. A generous layer of polish would probably benefit every leather surface in the vehicle. The dash pad, although faded, shows no cracks, and the dashboard as well as all of the gauges, knobs, and switches mounted with are clean and all information is easily readable. The steering wheel has survived nicely, with only some minor buildup present on the surface. The wooden inlays have also been nicely preserved which makes for a very pleasant surprise. All the way at the bottom, black carpets match the seats with red piping, and although they would benefit greatly from a detailing, they seem to show no damage. The interior as a whole is in solid condition, and some extra TLC could really take this interior to the next level.


Lifting the silver hood reveals an impressively clean engine bay that houses the 8-cylinder heart of the machine. All components appear to be in their proper locations, and nothing looks majorly damaged. Under the body of the vehicle, we see a solid undercarriage. A tidy frame and floorboards are joined by suspension components in proper order, and an exhaust that shows discoloration commensurate with the age of the vehicle.

History Highlights

We have an original build sheet on this V8 Volante. It tells us that the car shipped from the UK directly to Japan in 1986. When it rolled off the assembly line it was painted Dover White, with a black leather interior and burgundy piping, and black carpets with burgundy piping. We don’t know where the car spent its time in Japan, but we do know that the seller bought the car in Japan in July of 2008.

What We Think

The Aston Martin V8 is a wonderful car. A classic British sports car with American muscle car styling is very clearly a winning formula. Today’s example, the Series 5 Volante, was so wildly successful that Aston Martin only built the coupe by request, in order to keep up with demand for the Volante. Solid condition both inside and out leave us feeling that this V8 will have little issue reaching its $70,000 - $100,000 estimate.


It should be noted that this vehicle has been on static display for a number of years and there is no history available beyond that displayed in our photography section.

We have not started or driven the car so cannot vouch for its mechanical viability or functionality. It will require recommissioning prior to road use and is sold ‘as seen’.

Due to California emissions laws, please note that this vehicle may only be sold to an out-of-state resident for use outside of California or to a licensed automotive dealer.

Please note that the title for this vehicle is in transit.

Bidders MUST ensure they are aware of the registration situation of a car in auction, and whether it will be possible to export/register a vehicle in their country BEFORE they bid.

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If needed, Footman James classic car insurance and Classic Concierge offer storage can offer you options, plus we have a list of contacts who can help with transport and shipping both domestic and international.  

BORING, but IMPORTANT: Please note that whilst we at The Market always aim to offer the most descriptive and transparent auction listings available, we cannot claim they are perfect analyses of any of the vehicles for sale. We offer far greater opportunity for bidders to view, or arrange inspections for each vehicle thoroughly prior to bidding than traditional auctions, and we always encourage bidders to take advantage of this. We do take a good look at those vehicles which are delivered to our premises for sale, but this only results in our unbiased personal observations, not those of a qualified inspector or other professional, or the result of a long test drive.

Also, localised paint repairs are common with collectable and classic cars and if they have been professionally carried out then they may be impossible to detect, even if we see the car in person. So, unless we state otherwise, please assume that any vehicle could have had remedial bodywork at some point in its life.

Additionally, please note that most of the videos on our site have been recorded using basic cameras which often result in 'average' sound quality; in particular, engines and exhausts notes can sound a little different to how they are in reality.

Please note that this is sold as seen (Caveat Emptor) and that, as is normal for used goods bought at auction, a return policy does not apply. See our FAQs for more info, and feel free to inspect any vehicle as much as you wish.

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  • Location: Santa Paula, CA, United States
  • Seller Type: Private
  • Odometer Reading: 28103
  • Chassis Number: SCFCV81C1HTL15505
  • Engine: V8
  • Gearbox: auto
  • Steering position: LHD
  • Colour: White
  • Interior: Black / Leather
  • Estimated Price: $70,000 - $100,000

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