Hi there, this is Sytske, Alwin’s wife.
Alwin and I have visited the Gaydon factory several times now. It is always great fun and on two occasions we got a glimpse of cars that were not presented to the public yet.
One was the new Vanquish, the other the limited edition The Dragon 88, for the Chinese market only.
The Dragon 88
Aston Martin revealed The Dragon 88 edition on the 2012 Beijing Auto Show.
From the press release:
“The Dragon 88 concept is reserved for Aston Martin’s most powerful, elegant and prestigious models: the DBS, Virage and V8 Vantage S.
Each of the 88 cars will feature bespoke details that celebrate the mystical qualities of the dragon symbol, synonymous with power, strength and good luck in Chinese folklore. Among the detail changes, 24-carat gold is applied to the signature Aston Martin wing badges on each car. The cars are also finished in one of three special colours selected to chime with traditional Chinese art and imagery.
The Year of the Dragon 88 Limited Edition is designed for those seeking a rare ownership opportunity. In accordance with Chinese cultural significance of the number eight, symbolising prosperity, good fortune, and luck — only 88 of these unique vehicles will be produced.”
Enter The Dragon
When in Gaydon early 2012, we were allowed to view one of the 88 models on the production line and lo and behold, a DRAGON! In GOLD! On both headrests!
“Exclusive to the Year of the Dragon 88 Limited Edition, the models feature a striking headrest embroidery design, inspired by the “Nice-Dragon Wall” in Behai Park, Beijing. Created using around 30,000 stitches, each dragon motif features a combination of four thread colours: Metallic Gold, Cream Truffle, Winter Wheat and Kestrel Tan, which perfectly co-ordinate with the interior leather colours and Sahara Tan stitching throughout the car.”
Naturally, being a woman, I was hugely attracted by the golden dragon and tried to persuade hubby to have the dragon stitched in the headrests of our upcoming V12 Vantage Roadster. Alas, no luck there, for our blue Roadster we opted for the more modest V12 Vantage logo.
My dragon wish though was picked up by one of the sales managers at Aston Martin Hilversum. On one occasion we discussed the dragon again (he was teasing me with it of course) and I said, get me a dragon and I will wear it on the back of a leather jacket.
The Dragon 177
Flash forward to January 15 2013, Aston Martin’s Centenary Dinner in London.
Which also happened to be my birthday.
Upon arriving at my table, there was a shiny box waiting for me.
I jokingly said the box would hold a car key but when I opened the box, it was….
The Dragon 88.
Stitched upon a large piece of obsidian black leather.
To say I was flabbergasted is un understatement.
It is close to a miracle that this single dragon was created just for me, the Gaydon factory and some very dear Aston Martin workers must love me (thanks John, thanks Eduard!)
So there you have it, Dragon number 177 sits on the back of my custom leather jacket.
Am I lucky or what?