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I tend to think of Aston Martin as one of the most timeless supercar brands. Its cars from the 1950s and 1960s are icons. Many of its recent models leaned on that classic styling and even 20-year-old ones have aged gracefully. In the mid 1970s it tried a different formula with the Lagonda, and critics hated it. But it looks like modern collectors are warming up to this four-door flying wedge.

Until Ford acquired Aston Martin in the early 2000s (it’s since been sold), the company always seemed to be in financial trouble. It hand built a low number of high dollar cars, so was always at the whim of the economy, or car buying trends. In the 1970s, it decided to change that with an entry-level four-door. It even decided to use “Lagonda” as a model name, because it had once been an entire luxury car brand Aston Martin had acquired.

Aston Martin’s first stab at the Lagonda (1974) was just a stretched Aston Martin V8. And while that car had some distinct 70s styling, it still had round headlights and a rounded body. For 1976, Aston Martin decided to do something all new.

Aston Martin Lagonda interior
1983 Aston Martin Lagonda | Bring a Trailer

The 1976 Aston Martin Lagonda capitalized on the “flying wedge” design that Marcello Gandini had made mainstream with his 1974 Lamborghini Countach. This thing had pop-up headlights, touch button controls, and an LCD dashboard. In the 1970s! It was the first car to use a digital instrument panel. Some really advanced stuff from Aston Martin. But that research and development didn’t leave much budget for the rest of the car.

The carbureted V8 only made 280 horsepower and 302 lb-ft of torque, and its transmission was a three-speed auto from Chrysler. So the saloon took 8.8 seconds to get to 60 mph. Aston Martin hoped the catchy design would attract customers instead. And it charged more than a Maserati Kyalami or Ferrari 400.

Bloomberg Businessweek named the Series 2 Lagonda on its “50 ugliest cars of the last 50 years list.” Time magazine upped that by listing the Lagonda among the “50 Worst Cars of All Time,” specifying that it was a mechanical “catastrophe” and saying its electronics might have been cool, if they ever functioned.

Black Aston Martin Lagonda
1983 Aston Martin Lagonda | Bring a Trailer

So maybe it wouldn’t be a great candidate for a daily driver. Maybe it’s tech was a bit too advanced. Aston Martin even rolled back some of the features by the 1980 model year. But the Lagonda is a piece of automotive history. It’s also one of the most unique Aston Martins around.

It seems as if collectors are finally giving the Lagonda the love it deserves. A beautiful black 1983 (pictured) just sold on Bring a Trailer for a tidy $111,000. This car has had a full restoration, mechanically and visually. It was painted black during that process. By 1983, the dashboard used LEDs intstead of LCDs. The engine compression is also higher than stock. So this might be one of the quickest examples of this RAD car around.

Next, find out 007 things you never knew about longtime Aston Martin owner David Brown, or see the Series 3 Lagonda for yourself in the video below: