Aston Martin Lagonda
A Paradox of Geometry and Aesthetics Vacillating between Avante-Garde and Obscene.
In the motoring world, the humdrum and the extraordinary often share the same road. Moving in reverse to the days of disco, the entire British automobile industry faced considerable headwinds; from an oil embargo to strangulating emissions regulations – just to name a few. Against this backdrop, Aston Martin – under new ownership – unveiled the Lagonda – a low, angular wedge that flirted with a design ethos light years ahead of its time. The creation of William Towns, designer of the timeless DBS, the Lagonda emerged as a paradox of geometry and aesthetics vacillating between avante-garde and obscene.
Beyond the Lagonda’s exterior lay a pioneering spirit; it boasted an all-electronic dashboard and nascent computer-driven electronics - a target rich environment for Lucas - the Prince of Darkness. Yes, mechanically, the car was an enigma, its advanced features often plagued by dysfunction. Nonetheless, the Lagonda stood as a beacon of hope and futuristic vision.
Beneath its skin, the Lagonda harbored a V8 engine, its heft notwithstanding, the car managed to deliver a performance that was, by the standards of its era, commendable. The interior was a bastion of future-tech – screens aglow with a green hue reminiscent of Blade Runner, a veritable time capsule of retro-futurism. The plethora of switches, governing functions from climate control to illumination, augmented its eccentricity. And its aggravation, no doubt.
The Lagonda's metamorphosis spanned several series, each distinct in its own right. The Series 2, unveiled in 1976, embraced the zeitgeist with pop-up headlights and a design redolent of the wedge trend of the 70s. The subsequent Series 3 and 4 witnessed continued evolution, with the latter undergoing a substantial stylistic overhaul at the hands of William Towns. In addition, the Lagonda’s versatility was further underscored by exotic variants like the Tickford Lagonda and the Roos Engineering shooting-brake Lagonda.
In Aston Martin's storied history, the Lagonda occupies a niche of its own. It is a testament to the brand's unwavering pursuit of innovation. A chapter marked by triumphs and trials alike. The Lagonda's journey from the repulsive to a venerated classic mirrors the immutable charm of Aston Martin's quest for automotive excellence. The Aston Martin Lagonda is not merely an automobile; it is a manifesto of luxury and style that is unapologetically and distinctively unorthodox.