Aston Martin may conjure up a number of images but it's rarely a marque associated with four-door cars. Coupes and open-topped roadsters maybe, but practicality? Owners, it was assumed, didn't need it. After all, the golden era of Aston Martin coincided with an age when children should be seen, not heard and folded into contorted shapes if they wanted to ride in Daddy's DB. That changed a little in 2010 with the launch of the Rapide model we look at here, a car that has always been cut from slightly different cloth and one that has often floundered a little in communicating exactly what it is.
At first it was billed as a proper four-seat limousine to face down big German rivals able to seat four generously-tailored Kapitans of industry at 155mph on an autobahn, but it soon became clear that this was a bit of a reach for the more tightly-packaged Aston. The later Rapide S reverted to a more clearly sporting bias and seems more comfortable in that role. Sales may have been slow but there's something delightfully left-field about the Rapide that's ineffably cool, in a way that some of Aston Martin's more overt vehicles manage to miss out on. A used model is a good deal more affordable than you might imagine.