Autos

I’ll let the cars do the talking: Tobias Moers on running Aston Martin


Aston’s management reckons to be turning profits by around 2025. After serial delays, production of the £2.2 million Valkyrie is about to begin, although Moers still hasn’t met the car’s original inspiration, Red Bull F1 designer Adrian Newey. It’s a bit more awkward now, because Red Bull and Aston are F1 rivals, although Moers says the two parties are working together “in a good way”.

The plan is to make 150 road-going Valkyries and 25 track-only editions, and Moers shows every sign that he will be pleased when the last of them has reached its owner. He has driven the car and likes it (“it’s exactly the car you should buy if you want an active F1 car for the road”), but he’s unforgiving about the many delays in a complex programme. “There have been a lot of excuses,” he says quietly.

When we ask if he would consider another F1-inspired car, there’s a long pause. “I’ve done it twice now,” he says, alluding to previous unspecified battles with Mercedes’ Project One hypercar programme. “I need a deep breath to think about that one…”

We’re running out of time. Aston bosses usually say the James Bond question is the first one they’re asked in interviews, but we’ve been talking for 45 minutes and not yet faced it. So will the 007 association continue? “It’s an important legacy,” Moers says carefully, “but it’s just one of many things that makes Aston Martin special.”

Then, when he perceives that we might feel this answer reveals a lack of enthusiasm, he warms up. “Yes, I think the 007 association will continue.” Does he actually like it? “Sure, it’s a cool story, and a piece of our history we should maintain. Others have tried to take it, but no one has managed to push Aston away.”

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How is Aston performing?

According to commentators, Aston Martin Lagonda did considerably better than expected in the first quarter of the financial year just ended, notching sales worth £244 million – 55% of them DBX SUVs – against analysts’ earlier estimates of £200m. Revenue increased more than 150%. “On both our short- and medium-term targets, we remain more confident every day,” Lawrence Stroll told Bloomberg, describing the latest result as “very indicative of what’s to come”. The AML share price, which plummeted rapidly from a 2018 issue level of £19 to less than £1, has nearly doubled in a year.



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