20-21 January 2011


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Lot 142

1958 Aston Martin DB MK IIIA Coupe

$200,000 - $250,000

162 bhp (SAE), 2,922 cc DBA inline six-cylinder engine with dual overhead camshafts and dual SU carburetors, fully synchronized four-speed manual gearbox, independent front suspension with coil springs, trailing arms and anti-roll bar, trailing link, coil springs and Armstrong lever dampers, live Salisbury rear axle located by trailing links and transverse Panhard rod, and hydraulic four-wheel drum brakes. Wheelbase: 99"

- An incredibly original “black plate” California car
- Just 44,000 miles and acquired from its original owner in 2009!
- Perhaps the world’s most original DB2-series Aston Martin available anywhere
- Offered complete with copy of its original factory build sheet
- Recently serviced and ready for classic rallies, tours and preservation-class judging

The Frank Feeley-styled DB2, introduced in May 1950, marked the debut road model for Aston Martin under industrialist David Brown, who had recently acquired the company.

In 1953, this gentlemen’s sports car grew into a four-place saloon, the DB2/4, followed by Drophead Coupe and Fixed Head Notchback variants. By 1954, a new 3.0-liter engine producing 140 horsepower was introduced, and then in 1955, the revised MK II debuted at the London Motor Show. The MK II continued through early 1957 when the MK III supplanted it, with its upgraded DBA engine now providing 162 bhp and up to 178 hp with optional dual exhaust outlets. Detail refinements enhanced the exterior styling, particularly the grille, and a redesigned instrument panel now placed all gauges directly in front of the driver, its binnacle reflecting the new shape grille opening influenced by the DB3S sports racing car. The former 2/4 model designation was dropped in 1957, with the cars now simply known as the DB MK III. Four-wheel “Alfin” drum brakes were standard, with Girling front disc brakes optional on the earliest MK IIIs produced, sometimes known retrospectively as the MK IIIA. While factory records show 529 DB MK IIIs built, the AMOC Register places total production at 551 examples, including one purpose-built competition car.

The car offered here, an original left-hand drive, Southern California “black plate” MK III from 1958, is particularly desirable and unique. It was purchased new by the original owner, one Mr. Warren Painter of Sun Valley, California from a Pasadena, California-based Aston Martin dealer, and remained with him until his death, when the current owner acquired it with only 44,000 miles logged through 2009. It is unquestionably one of the finest original “time capsule” Aston Martins in existence today.

As offered, the DB MK III retains much of its original 'Broken White' (Ivory) paint finish, with only selective repairs made over the years as required, along with a superb chassis. The interior was originally trimmed in black Connolly hides, and the front seats were re-covered at some point. Mechanically, it is noted to track and drive with a tight feel, as only such an original, unrestored car would. Recently, the current and second owner acquired the car when it first came onto the market, with the original intention of restoring it. Upon delivery and reflection, however, he wisely realized that to do so was both unnecessary and detrimental to the unique character of this car. He has driven and enjoyed the DB MK III occasionally since acquisition, and he has entered it into one classic rally, confirming it runs as it should. He is now offering it publicly for sale for the first time in its lifetime.

According to the noted, award-winning Aston Martin restoration specialist Kevin Kay, this car is “the template with which any DB2-series Aston should be compared for an authentic restoration.” Recently serviced and eligible for preservation-class judging, as well as most classic rallies and tours available today, this 1958 Aston Martin DB MK III is offered complete with a copy of its original factory build sheet dated March 1, 1958. Mostly original, carefully preserved and unrestored, this DB MK III has an irreplaceable patina that simply can’t be replicated and places it in a class all its own. After all, a collector car is only original once.


Please note that this vehicle is titled by the engine number 1029.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more