Aston announces B\u0026W as official audio partner

'Sensorially supercharged' Bowers & Wilkins' system promises high performance, ultra luxury audio in DB12

By Matt Bird / Tuesday, 30 May 2023 / Loading comments

We all know that car audio is more important than ever. Customers don’t so much demand as expect the pinnacle in connectivity, sound quality, and style from their in-car systems. It’s reflected in just how much effort is invested by manufacturers to achieve the very best; nowhere is that better demonstrated than with the new DB12, which will be the first Aston Martin to feature Bowers & Wilkins’ newly developed Surround Sound System as an option.

The headlines are dominated by the numbers, of course, with 1,170W of power, 15 speakers, a 14-channel amp and five B&W Nautilus Aluminium Double Dome Tweeters. But there’s far more to this latest collaboration than just being able to blast out inappropriately loud ABBA via the smart new interior controls. The very fact the tie-up exists is notable for starters, Aston and Bowers & Wilkins today confirming their status as official partners ‘striving for heightened levels of performance’. Furthermore, while we’re used to car engineers working with their equivalents in suspension and tyre companies, there’s now cooperation with sound engineers as well. For the DB12, that meant ensuring the location, direction and symmetry of the speaker position was spot on to get the right immersive quality for the system.

Like a new car, a new audio installation features the latest in technology as well. There are five B&W Continuum mid-range speakers in the DB12, said to represent eight years (!) of development to deliver ‘a great step forward in midrange speaker performance’ thanks to a carefully damped woven composite construction. The aforementioned tweeters should reduce resonance, and their location separate from the rest of the cabinet reduces what’s called coloration and minimise acoustic reflection. We’re hoping this makes more sense to proper audiophiles. But even to us laypeople, the promise of a sound that is ‘more detailed, clear and natural’ is very promising. There aren’t many great journeys that aren’t improved by a great audio experience.

Dan Shepherd, Vice President of Licensing and Partnerships at Bowers & Wilkins, said: “The alignment of Bowers and Wilkins with Aston Martin is an entirely natural one, with both celebrating their British heritage while being renowned for innovation and creating thrilling experiences. As well as car-audio integration, this exciting new partnership will also lead to elevated brand co-operations in the future. We proudly look forward to the next chapter.” And with Aston already confirming that there will be B&W systems available in upcoming cars, this really is just the start.

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