The Shooting Brake is a very English type of motor car. Imagine the country squire, dressed to the nines in his plus fours and tweed jacket, arriving at the estate meet for the day’s shoot, his twin Purdey’s in their case in the back of his very-English estate car. That, for those who are puzzled by the archaic term, is what a Shooting Brake is all about.
This type of car precluded the estate car we now know so well, and was usually a coach-builder’s special on a Rolls-Royce, Bentley, Alvis or other gentleman’s vehicle in former days. These days, not a lot has changed, as evidenced by the introduction last year of the exclusive – not to mention very, very beautiful Aston Martin Vanquish Shooting Brake, suitably clothed by the esteemed Zagato design house.
The only problem is, they’ve all been sold. That should come as no surprise.
Aston Martin has, of course, a history with Zagato going back to the 1960’s when this most quirky of Italian coachbuilders first produced a series of quite stunning cars in limited numbers. Today’s Vanquish Shooting Brake is similarly limited to a run of just 99, making it THE car in which the modern-day English Country Gent should turn up for the shoot, at his club, or simply drive from day to say.
The stunning, sumptuous an quite glorious finished interior, complete with the panel in the back that goes in place for transporting guns, is something to behold, while the trusted and mighty V12 engine – all 5.9 litres of it in perfect harmony producing a sound you simply cannot forget – is at the heart of this sensuous machine, which really is among the best looking cars of the modern era.
It is to Aston Martin’s credit that all have found buyers so quickly, as there are very few – if any – genuine Shooting Brakes to be found. It’s a type of car that always was exclusive and, in the shape of the Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake, remains rightfully so today.