Sir, Philip Delves Broughton is right that Aston Martin combines “an artisanal, bespoke quality, a feeling of hard-earned expertise”. However, the rest of his understanding of the company (Comment, October 1) is factually wrong and misinformed.
Because we are working with industry leading partners to create such a craft as the £1.3m AM37 powerboat, Mr Delves Broughton would have you believe that Aston Martin has lost its focus on creating beautiful handcrafted sports cars.
As even a cursory glance at our widely reported business plan would have helped him understand, at no time in the company’s 103-year history has more been invested in both replacing and expanding our range of products; not to mention the thousands of UK-based jobs that are being created as result. By 2020, we will have the widest range of luxury cars in our history, so much so that we need a second manufacturing plant in order to build the rest of our expanding portfolio. This plant, to be built in Wales, will create along with our Gaydon site a further 1,000 direct jobs and a forecast 3,000 additional ones in our supply base.
Mr Delves Broughton goes on to eulogise the DBS from the 1969 James Bond film, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, suggesting we deviate from that type of product at our peril. Somewhat confusingly, he then cautions that we should not waste time creating cars like the Vanquish Zagato Volante but rather put our focus on creating an electric SUV, a product he deems much more suitable for attracting attention.
While we always encourage input from brand enthusiasts about the direction of Aston Martin, this kind of misinformed faux-sympathy adds nothing to the legitimate debate about the future of British luxury brands and the significant impact we have on job creation, inward investment and export success.
Chief Executive, Aston Martin Lagonda
Gaydon, Warks, UK