The Aston Martin DBR1 and Porsche 550 deserve a place in a motorsport hall of fame. The original versions of these cars are very few. Only 5 of the Aston Martin DBR1 was ever made. As for the Porsche 550s, 99 of them were produced between 1953 and 1956. Today, each of these sports cars has a replica, and this article will compare the two replicas. Before we begin, here is a brief history of both racing cars.
Specification Table of Aston Martin DBR1 Replica and Porsche 550 Spyder Replica
Aston Martin DBR1 Replica
Porsche 550 Spyder Replica
Hand laid Fibreglass and Aluminum
Hand laid Fibreglass body
|Double Wishbone with adjustable dampers|
Fully adjustable twin torsion I-beam
|De Dion Tube Axle with Watts linkages and adjustable dampers|
Torsion bar with adjustable spring plates
975 kg (2149lbs)
590 kg (1300lbs)
3.4-liter Straight-six Jaguar XK or 4.2 liters Aston Martin engine
Flat-four Volkswagen Engine
|Brakes||Front – Discs brakes|
Rear – Disc brakes
Front – Disc brakes
Rear – Drum brakes
Handbrake on the rear wheel
4-speed manual transmission
|4 – Speed manual transaxle|
|Power||Up to 255 bhp||Up to 165 hp|
Front – 15” x 4.5”
Rear – 15” x 5.5”
Push to Start
Push to Start
Aston Martin DBR1 and Porsche 550 – A race for Mastery
The Porsche 550 Spyder is a notorious racer designed by Porsche. In the history of the Le Mans, the Porsche 550 won its first race on the same day it premiered. This was the Nurburgring Eifel Race held in 1953. It went ahead to establish dominance by taking class wins in the 24 Hours Le Mans of 1953. The Porsche 550 is sleek and fast and always among the top contenders in any race. It had its first major victory in all categories in the 1956 Targa Florio race.
The Aston Martin DBR1 is by no means inferior to the Porsche 550. Introduced in 1956, this supercar won the 1959 24 Hours of Le Mans. In the same year, it also won the World sportscar championship. This is no mean fit as the record is only held by only two other sports cars. This lightning-fast sports car was designed by Ted Cutting, who was the chief designer for Aston Martin in 1956.
Both the Aston Martin DBR1 and the Porsche 550 Spyder established themselves successfully as top racing cars in the 1950s.
The Replicas History
Aston Martin DBR1 Replica
Although only 5 of these were ever made, you can still relieve the feeling of driving the Original 1959 Aston Martin DBR1. This version of the supercar is quite significant as it won the Le Mans car race. Andrew Soar is the man behind the 1959 Aston Martin DBR1 replicas. Compared to the original Aston Martin DBR1 that was recently sold for a whopping $22.5 million, these replicas are sold for just $80,000 for fiberglass body and $130,000 for an aluminum body panel. Despite the price difference, the experience is very much the same. Its smooth and streamlined panel and the massive wheel will give you the feeling of driving a supercar.
What makes the Aston Martin DBR1 unique?
Don’t get this wrong; the Original DBR1 was a fantastic car. Its physical and mechanical prowess is evident because this car won so many races in its time. However, AS Motorsport managed to add a few more tweaks to the replica to makes it slightly better than the original. The replica comes in two types: One with the fiberglass chassis and another with an aluminum chassis. Nevertheless, the replica maintains the shape of the original Aston Martin DBR1. Besides, it can be made to any specification and takes about 6 to 8 months to build, depending on the specification.
The original Le Mans Aston Martin DBR1 weighed 801 kg and had a space frame design. A torsion bar and trailing arms suspensions were used in the front end of the car, while a De Dion suspension was having longitudinal torsion bars, and watt linkage was used in the rear end. The Aston Martin straight-six engine with FR (Front engine and Rear wheel drive) layout was installed for power. The engine had a capacity of 2,493 cc/2,922 cc and delivered a 255 bhp or 190 kW power, and used a 5-speed manual transmission controlled with a rack and pinion type steering.
The AM motorsport replica of the DBR1 has a few modifications.
The replica is more spacious but maintains the sleek design of the original. The bonnet is DIY made with an alloy.
Having two types of engines: The standard engine is a 3.4-liter Jaguar straight-six engine and the more expensive Aston Martin engine. Both engine types use a multiport fuel injection system and a 5-speed manual gear. The engine typically produces between 250 lb and 275 lb torque.
For braking, the Aston Martin DBR1 replica uses disc brakes. The front wheels have a double-wishbone suspension, while the rear wheels have a De Dion type suspension.
Other components like the look of the dashboard and seat covering can be altered to any specification. Even the colors can be changed from the original blue color to any other color.
One thing the replica has going for is modifying certain things while maintaining the overall feel of the 1959 Aston Martin DBR1.
You can buy The Aston Martin DBR1 replica from AM Motorsport for $80,000 to $130,000, depending on the specs. However, this is a steal considering the fact the original DBR1 is sold for millions of dollars.
Porsche 550 Spyder replica
A 1995 Porsche 550 Spyder will typically go for about $4 million now. Unlike the Aston Martin DBR1, about 99 of the Porsche 550 Spyder were made, making them reasonably inexpensive. Today, however, there are several replicas of the 1995 Porsche 550 Spyder. One company known to manufacture the best looking replica of this iconic car is Beck. Before we discuss the features of the Beck replicas, here are some things you should know about the original 1995 Porsche 550 Spyder.
The replica looks exactly like the original thing except for the fiberglass body panel. The original Porsche 550 was made of steel and iron. The main difference between the replica and the original Spyder lies in its mechanical parts.
The 1995 Porsche 550 Spyder had a 1.5L flat-four engine with a displacement of 1498 cc. This was capable of producing108 hp @ 6200 rpm and a maximum torque of 121 N.m. It also came with a 4-speed manual transmission that changed in 1956 to 5-speed manual gear. This supercar had an excellent weight distribution thanks to the RMR layout. This made the 550 Spyder a very stable car.
For the replicas, much of the originality of the 1995 Porsche 550 Spyder is preserved. Although most supercar fans will argue that it doesn’t roar the same, the feel and experience remain the same. The reason for this lies in the engine. The Turnkey version of Becks replica comes with a 125 hp Volkswagen engine with a displacement of 1915cc. It also has a 4-speed transaxle, disc breaks in the front, and drum breaks in the rear.
The Porsche 550 Spyder replica from Becks comes for $14,000 for the basic version. This comes with everything except the suspensions, transmission, and engine. The standard version sells for $21,500 and comes completely assembled with the Volkswagen engine. If you are in for the speed, then with $1,000 you can upgrade to the CB performance 2160 cc engine capable of delivering up to 155-hp.
The Aston Martin DBR1 replica vs Porsche 550 Spyder replica
The Aston Martin DBR1 replica and the Porsche 550 Spyder replica are sports cars whose design says it. However, they both come from different manufacturers, and we should expect certain variations in their specs. Here’s a comparison between these two classics.
No doubt you’ll like to know what it feels like driving these supercars. Well, the feeling is about the same. Each one is fast enough and gives the flexibility of making specific design changes. They are both eye-catching and sure to turn heads wherever you go.
For the mechanical aspects, things begin to differ a lot. The Aston Martin has a double-wishbone suspension in the front and a De Dion type suspension in the rear wheel. On the other hand, the Porsche 550 Spyder replica uses an adjustable twin torsion type suspension in front-wheel and torsion bars with an adjustable spring plate in the rear wheel.
Comfortable Design Comparison
The Aston Martin DBR1 replica is wider than the Porsche 550 Spyder. This means there’s more room inside the car. The 61” width of the Porsche means smaller seats and smaller equipment.
The Porsche has a length of 146” while the Aston Martin replica has a size of 169”. This may not be a problem for those who’re of average height. However, the shorter legroom in the Porsche 550 Spyder replica may pose a problem for really tall individuals.
When it comes to aerodynamics, the sleeker, the better. This means the Porsche takes the upper hand here. Its slightly smaller frame is more aerodynamic than the bulkier-looking Aston Martin. Also, the Porsche 550 weighs just about 1300lbs, add that to its speed and sleek shape, you have a beast.
The engine is where the magic lies. The Aston Martin DBR1 replica comes with either a Jaguar XK or an Aston Martin engine. For the Porsche 550 Spyder replica, you get a 1.5 liter Volkswagen engine. The Volkswagen engine in the Porsche is a four flat horizontally opposed boxer engine capable of delivering up to 165 Hp. The standard version has a displacement of 1915cc and a maximum power of 125 hp. Beck gives the option of upgrading to the 2160 cc engine that can deliver up to 165 hp for an extra $1000.
The Aston Martin DBR1 replica’s engine trumps the Porsche in sheer power. Its 2,493 cc/2,922 cc straight-six Jaguar XK engine delivers a power of up to 255 bhp. This is equivalent to 258 hp. The Aston Martin replica is also built for the distance as both the Jaguar XK engine and the Aston Martin engine (optional) have higher fuel capacities of 3.4 and 4.2 liters, respectively. In contrast, the Volkswagen engine has a mere 1.5-liter capacity.
Both cars are relatively safe. They both have safety straps but lack the latest safety harnesses of modern cars, like the airbag.
The Porsche 550 Spyder replica is less expensive compared to the Aston Martin DBR1 replica. A complete Becks replica of the Porsche 550 Spyder sells for about $24,000, while the Aston Martin DBR1 from AM motorsport Le Mans version comes for $80,000 to $130,000. So it is safe to say that the Porsche is a more budget-friendly option.
This one is a bit tricky. The large fuel capacity of the Aston Martin doesn’t necessarily mean it has a better fuel efficiency than the Porsche. Typically, the higher number of cylinders and weight of the Aston Martin DBR1 replica technically implies that it will consume more fuel per km than the four-cylinder Volkswagen engine in the Porsche. Additionally, the lightweight of the Porsche 550 Spyder replica is an added advantage when it comes to fuel efficiency.
The Aston Martin DBR1 replica and Porsche 550 Spyder replica have custom-made parts that may be high maintenance. However, essential maintenance should do just fine for both cars. But when certain parts need to be replaced, it may demand placing orders which could be expensive.
What can be considered a problem or challenge depends on one’s sentiment toward these cars. An example is the speed and size of the cars. In both of these areas, the Aston Martin DBR1 replica takes the lead. It has a higher speed, and it’s equally longer and broader than the Porsche 550 Spyder replica. On the other hand, the Porsche replica has better fuel efficiency than the Aston Martin replica being that it has a smaller engine and it’s equally lighter in weight. So depending on your preference, you can either go for fuel economy or speed.
In this article, we’ve considered two of the top replicas of classic cars in history. Beck and AM motorsport have gone to great lengths to bring back the feeling of driving these rare supercars. It is because these cars are costly and rare. It makes a lot of sense why many lovers of classic cars opt for the closest thing that is both available and affordable. The Aston Martin DBR1 replica from AM Motorsports, also called the R1 Le Mans and the Beck Porsche 550 Spyder replica, is an excellent copy of the legendary supercars that made history in the world of car racing.