Aston Martin Owners Club - South Australia

75th anniversary of the Times advertisement for the High Class Motor Business

On October 1st 1946, a tiny, three line advertisement was posted in the Times newspaper, London.  It was headed ‘High Class Motor Business’ in the ‘For Sale’ section and this tiny advert changed the course of motoring history.

David Brown saw the ad and after a period of negotiation, he took ownership of the company in February 1947.  He invested a lot of money and energy into the company that could have become yet another British Car maker to ‘bite the dust’ in post war Britain.  Under his ownership, the company introduced new models, achieved significant racing success, especially at Le Mans in 1959, became James Bond’s favourite car and the initials DB became an integral part of the company’s car line-up.

It appears that the 75th anniversary of this sentinel event had been largely forgotten but South Australian Area Rep Terry Jones remembered.  He initially intended that the anniversary would be the focal point of the Opening Dinner for the Stately Affair that was planned for the October long weekend in the Barossa Valley.  Unfortunately, the event, that is an annual event held between South Australia and Victoria, had to be cancelled due to an outbreak of COVID-19 in Victoria.  It was too late to organise an alternative event and so he advised members they should celebrate the event in their own inimitable way and then take a photograph and provide a back story and enter it into a competition.  Terry  couldn’t decide between two entries and so both were declared equal winners.

Members Sally and Neville were presented with a framed copy of the page in the Times that contained the ad and members Andrew and Brenda were presented with a numbered bottle of limited edition Chardonnay that was made for Sir Stirling Moss by Tony Parkinson of Pennys Hill Winery.   Sally and Neville’s entry was of them holding a copy of the advertisement in front of their Aston Martin Vantage while Andrew and Brenda’s entry was of Grandad and Grandson looking in the engine bay of their Aston Martin vantage for any sign of ‘DB’ (see photos).

Area Rep, Terry presenting the numbered bottle of wine to Andrew and Brenda
Terry presenting a framed copy of the Times newspaper to member Sally for her entry









Members Sally and Neville with a copy of the advertisement that appeared in the Times on October 1st 1946 and their Aston Martin


Member Andrew with grandson searching in vain for a DB in their Vantage


Terry had an offering of his own that was not eligible for a prize due to him being the Area Rep and adjudicator.  Terry advised the assembled members at the October 24th run to the Pretoria Htel in Mannum that he had written a poem.  Terry cautioned members that this was his first poem and would likely be his last and members were generous in listening as he read it.  The poem appeared to be well received and most members actually applauded – see below for the poem.


Terry’s poem entitled ‘The three line advert that changed our lives’

On October the first in late 46

An ad appeared, it read like this

“High Class Motor Business” for sale

But of the marque, there was no detail


Many saw it and a few wrote in

The answer they got was ‘it’s ASTON MARTIN’

David Brown was but one, keen to see

A racer himself, he thought ‘It could be for me’


To Feltham he went to visit the factory

He thought the Atom, & staff most satisfactory

The engine was weak but he’d fix that later

By answering an ad in a later paper


But pay 30k? – not this man from up North

Huddersfield, where they know what money is worth

He offered twenty no more would he pay

His rivals vanished and Brown won the day


Brown set his sights on victory no less

In ‘59 at La Sarthe came his greatest success

The Ferrari’s broke down leaving Aston the prize

Shelby and Salvadori won Le Mans by miles


Aston was sold due to shortage of loot

The cars dropped ‘DB’ and bore ‘AM’ on their boot

DB was revived after two decades

By the new owner, Ford, thanks to Gauntlett and Hayes


Aged 89 in Monte, David Brown he did die

Went to the ‘High Class Motor Business’ lounge in the sky

But DB lives on in the names of our cars

Excepting the ones it doesn’t, of course


So DB describes our 2s to 11s

I suspect the Great Man himself admires them from heaven

He’s proud of the part he played in the story

Of James Bond, Will & Kate, and Le Mans glory


The High Class Motor Business goes on and on

Building cars in Wales, entering Formula One

Electric is next, not sure its for me

Without a V8 sounding ‘surly’


Seven decades later and the ad was forgot

Except those South Aussies, the colonial lot

They remembered the ad and raised a glass

And recalled those 3 lines from 75 years past

Scroll to top