The first of the Aston Martin eight cylinder cars was the DBS V8 in 1973 which is now simply referred to as the Aston Martin V8. This vehicle became the company's mainstream car for two decades before Aston Martin decided to change things up with the new Vantage and Virage models of the 1990s where the V8 grew into a 550 HP 5.3 Liter twin supercharged monster. Both the Vantage name and V8 moniker were brought back in 2005 with a 4.3 Liter motor making 380 HP and 302 lb-ft of torque before being revamped in 2008 with a larger 4.7 Liter V8 that makes 420 HP and 347 lb-ft of torque mated to a 6-speed manual transmission or a 6-speed automatic transmission. This new engine brought the car's 0 to 60 MPH time down to 4.7 seconds while raising the Aston's top speed to 180 MPH.
Aston Martin and TRG (The Racers Group) have just signed a partnership that will bring the famous British sports car to a North American racing series starting next season. TRG will receive a total of 10 race cars that will be seen in competitions like the Twelve Hours of Sebring, Grand-Am Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge, The Grand American Rolex Series and the Pirelli World Challenge Series.
The first model we will see on the race track is the Vantage GTE. It will be unveiled at the Sebring winter test session on February 7th and then raced in the Twelve Hours of Sebring in March. The TRG-AMR Vantage GT3 will be raced in competitions like The Grand American Rolex Series and the Pirelli World Challenge Series, while the V8 Vantage GT4 will be raced in the Grand-Am Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge.
The GTE version and the GT4 are based on the production version Vantage V8 and are powered by a 4.7-liter V-8 engine producing 420 horsepower, while the GT3 is based on the V12 Vantage and will be offered with a 6.0-liter V-12 engine.
"We are delighted to form this innovative new partnership with TRG which presents great potential across a variety of racing competitions. In TRG we have a proven race partner who clearly knows how to be competitive and win races, helping us achieve new levels of success in North American motorsport for Aston Martin," said John Gaw, Managing Director of Aston Martin Racing.
The Beijing Auto Show has become one of the biggest auto shows in the world, largely because of China’s growing stature as the biggest auto market in the world. So with the ever-increasing spotlight shining brighter and brighter on this event, automakers have taken notice and have put their best feet forward with the cars they bring.
One automaker in particular is Aston Martin , which is coming to Beijing with a special "Limited Edition 88" model. The special edition Aston will be available in a number of models, including the V8 Vantage S , the Virage , and the DBS . A big allure of the Limited Edition 88 model is the fact that it’s being built to celebrate the Chinese Year of the Dragon with the number 88 playing a prominent part, largely because of the number’s symbolism for good fortune and prosperity.
The Limited Edition 88 can be had in a number of different color tones, including Amethyst Red, Volcano Red, and Champagne Gold. Each exterior color comes with a unique interior finish that includes Spicy Red, Deep Purple, and Red Chancellor.
Other elements on the Limited Edition 99 are metal and burl Piano Black finishes with a contrasting Sahara Tan stitching, a special badging that comes with the model number, and dragon logo. True to its special edition nature, the plate is made out of filaments of Metallic Gold, Truffle Cream, Winter Wheat, and Kestrel Tan.
Then there’s the Aston Martin logo, which can be found on the tailgate and is coated with 24-karat gold. Lastly, the Limited Edition 88 has been fitted with a new set of alloy wheels in a ten-spoke design and silver finish and black brake calipers.
The British automaker will only produce 88 models and each will be reserved exclusively for the Chinese market.
The history of the Aston Martin Vantage began back in 2005 with the unveiling of the V8 version. Then in 2009, the model expanded with the addition of a V12 version. After a series of technological updates received in 2008, the model has now been revised once again. The updated Vantage will be displayed this year at the Geneva Motor Show next to the recently announced Zagato version.
Most changes have been made to the V8 version , while theV12 model continues unchanged. For the V8 model Aston Martin has replaced the optional six-speed Sportshift automated manual transmission with a new seven-speed Sportshift one. Also, a series of updates have been made to the car’s chassis and a new braking system has also been added.
As for the exterior and the interior updates, most changes have been inspired by the Vantage S and N400 limited edition and make the car looking more aerodynamic and sportier.
UPDATE 04/11/2012: Aston Martin has announced the US prices for the new V8 Vantage model. The coupe version will be priced at $118,370 while the roadster version goes up to $132,870. We are still waiting to see how much we will have to pay for the V12 version.
Hit the jump to read more about the new Aston Martin Vantage.
There are some “versus” videos that we come across that once we read the titles we simply just keep moving. Things like “Dodge Viper vs. Tomahawk Superbike” come to mind. C’mon, same engine but the bike weighs over 1,000 pounds less. Yeah, no need to watch that one. Other times titles are so intriguing we cannot pass them up, regardless of how obvious they seem.
In a day’s work, we came across this gem titled “Aston Martin vs. Inline Skater” and thought “what the…” Thinking it was going to be some sort of goofy prank, we almost skimmed right past it, but figured watching it wouldn’t hurt.
To our surprise this is a legit video of a German man racing an Aston Martin Vantage , from what we can tell. You may be wondering how the man on the skates plans to keep up with the Aston Martin, which has about 400+ horsepower. Well, he specially fitted three miniature jet engines, which produce 300 horsepower, onto a suit and used them to propel him down a 1/4-mile straight. According to the driver of the car, the skater claims that he has reached upwards of 120 mph and had no objections after finding out the Aston Martin could clear a 1/4-mile in 13 seconds.
You might still think there’s no chance for the inline skater, but you may be shocked to see just how fast those inline skates will go. Plus you can get a good laugh at the driver of the Aston Martin as he is more impressed with the speed of the skater than trying to win the race.
Sit back and enjoy the video above. Oops, we almost forgot, don’t try this at home.
The year 2012 will mark Aston Martin ’s return to the FIA World Endurance Championship with the Vantage GTE entering in the GTE Pro category. A second car will join in the third round at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The cars will be driven by Darren Turner (GBR), Stefan Mücke (D), and Adrian Fernandez (MX).
The new Vantage GTE is based on the Vantage GT2 , but improved upon with significant additions to all areas including the engine, drivetrain, and suspension. The new GTE will be powered by the same 4.7 V8 engine found in the production version , but with significant changes made to the cylinder heads, connecting rods, valves, and camshafts. The engine is coupled to a racing system and a six-speed semi-automatic sequential transmission with competition clutch.
The Aston Martin Vantage GTE’s body is made from lightweight carbon fiber and features an advanced aerodynamic package with a carbon fiber splitter, flat floor and diffuser, and a carbon fiber rear wing designed using the latest computational fluid dynamics (CFD) techniques. Aston Martin has also added a bespoke wishbone suspension and six-piston Brembo racing calipers.
Aston Martin Lagonda Chairman David Richards shared his enthusiasm for the new project: "It’s great to be returning to our core motorsport activity; production-based GT racing. It formed the basis for Aston Martin’s return to competition when the DBR9 GT1-racer was launched in 2004, and it was in GT racing that we achieved our famous victories at Le Mans in 2007 and 2008."
Over the years, Aston Martin has built and released the Vantage GT4 for competition in European GT4 races. This year, the British automaker is releasing the newest version of the Vantage GT4 , only this time, it’s bound to unleash its fury on American soil for the first time.
It’s an ideal time for the Aston to release the Vantage GT4 in the US, especially after its successful return year to the American LeMans series where it bagged wins with the Aston Martin DBR1-2 prototype in a number of races, including Long Beach, Mosport, Mid-Ohio, Road America, and Laguna Seca.
For the 2012 racing season, the Aston Martin Vantage GT4 will be built and raced by Toronto-based partner Multimatic Motorsports. The car itself will be re-dissected for racing purposes, which means that all of the luxury amenities of the road version will be removed in favor of race-spec equipment. Certain parts will also be added, including a new splitter that increases downforce at the front of the car, as well as a new carbon fiber diffuser, and a redesigned underfloor that creates an area of low pressure under the rear of the car, increasing the car’s overall downforce.
One thing that will remain with the car though is its 4.7-liter V8 engine, which Aston has used ever since it began building the Vantage GT4 back in 2008.
For the 2012 season, Multimatic Motorsports will be fielding two cars, which will be driven by some noted drivers, including Scott Maxwell, Joe Foster, Ston Martin, chief engineer Chris Porritt, and Hollywood actor-slash-racer Patrick Dempsey.
UPDATE 01/25/2012: Aston Martin has announced that the beginning of its Grand-Am campaign will be on Friday, January 27th during the first round of the 2012 Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge (CTSCC) at the Daytona International Speedway. The company will join forces with Toronto-based Multimatic Motorsports to enter a pair of Vantage GT4s in the Grand American Road Racing series. "The first round of the Grand-Am Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge at Daytona will see Aston Martin realize a long-held desire to have the Vantage GT4 competing regularly in North America. Aston Martin Racing has built and sold nearly 100 Vantage GT4s since we raced the first one at the Nürburgring 24 Hour race in 2006, and it’s great to be present at last in such an important market with such a strong and experienced partner as Multimatic."
UPDATE 03/05/12: The Aston Martin Vantage GT4 is headed to the 2012 Geneva Motor Show with plenty of new aerodynamic components in preparation for the 2012 season. The most prominent modification is a new carbon fiber rear wing, a redesigned roll cage, and a reconfigured fuel tank to lower the race car’s center of gravity.
Aston Martin is preparing to offer a facelift version for every model in the line-up thanks to that high interest loan they just secured from global investors. There’s already been talk of what will happen to the future DB9 debuting sometime next year, as well as a new DBS in late 2012. Now spy photographers have caught the future Vantage model testing near the Aston Martin technical center in Germany. The vehicle is still in the early stages of development, but it already hosts a number of changes that will significantly change the vehicle’s overall look.
The Aston Martin Vantage will not be a completely new vehicle as previously thought, but a facelift version including new and wider skirts and major changes in the body panels. That being said, these additions could have just been added to hide any changes made to the chassis of the vehicle. No other details have been offered, but it is believed that the exterior design will take its inspiration from the One-77 supercar with its borrowed bonnet, sides, and cooling vents, in an attempt to make the car look more aggressive and sporty. These changes may also supply a decrease in weight, by about 350 lbs.
The 2014 Vantage will more than likely be powered by the same 4.7-liter V-8 and 6.0-liter V-12 engines currently found in the sports car, possibly tweaked to deliver more power, better fuel economy, and lower emissions.
Expect to see the new Aston Martin Vantage in late 2013.
Just when it seemed a brand new collaboration was on the verge of rising, talks between Aston Martin and Daimler have been slowed almost to a halt. The two brands had an interest in working with each other because it would be mutually beneficial: Aston Martin would have helped in developing Maybach models and they would, in turn, be able to take advantage of Mercedes ’ latest technology. Now, German publications have reported that this agreement has collapsed and, as a result, Aston Martin’s future is in grave danger.
The first Aston Martin vehicle to feel the heat may be the DB9 supercar. This model is built on the VH platform that was developed when Aston was owned by Ford Motor Co, but since a redesign is expected for the 2014 model year, Aston Martin finds itself scrambling for a new platform; one they thought they would be able to get from Daimler. The redesigned Vantage scheduled to come out in 2015 is in the same precarious situation, leaving Aston working doubletime to re-engineer the current platform, powertrain, and sheet metal.
The highly anticipated Lagonda models aren’t any safer. This bump in the road leaves their production entirely uncertain because the SUV was going to be built on the Mercedes GL platform and the sedan was supposed to use the Mercedes S-Class platform.
Aston Martin is completely at a loss, though. They just secured a £304 million bond - about $440 million at the current rates - from global investors at a rather high 9.25% interest over the next seven years. This money will be going towards designing all new platforms for their full line of sports cars, including the DB9, Vantage, and Rapide.
Investors are getting more and more strict when it comes to allowing people to borrow their money and it seems as if Aston Martin is getting the short end of that stick. The British sports car maker has secured a £304 million bond - about $440 million at the current rates - from global investors at a rather high 9.25% interest over the next seven years. That’s a 3-4% increase over the typical interest rate. Desperate or not, Aston Martin now has the money to design an all new platform for their full line of sports cars, including the DB9 , Vantage and Rapide . Expect the new line to debut in 2015 or 2016 with the first details of the new design and production engineering showing up in a concept car sometime in 2012.
Before the British automaker moves to the new platform, however, their current VH platform will have to be modified to obey the new Federal FMVSS pedestrian impact rules. This re-engineered platform will be used for facelift versions of all three models. The new models will also benefit from new skin panels, revised interiors, and tweaked chassis and engines.
German tuning specialists, Wheelsandmore, have taken an Aston Martin Vantage V8 as their next project, giving the British supercar a well-rounded set of upgrades that include a new set of wheels, a new suspension, and a slight increase in power.
As the name of their company suggests, Wheelsandmore is no stranger to having some of the best rims on the market. For the Vantage V8, they decided to dress it up with a new set of handcrafted 21" three-piece 6Sporz² forged rims wrapped in 55/30/21 tires at the front, and 295/25/21 tires at the back. To go with the new set of gorgeous rims, Wheelsandmore also gave the Vantage V8 a new suspension kit courtesy of KW that comes with a rebound and compression adjustable stainless steel coilover suspension variant 3. Lastly, Wheelsandmore gave the supercar a new 200 sport catalysts and flip-controlled exhaust system, giving the Vantage’s 4.7 Liter V8 engine an increased output of 460 horsepower and 369 lb/ft of torque, up from the standard model’s 420-horsepower output.
All told, it’s not the most extravagant tuning program done on the Aston Martin Vantage. But in terms of subtle improvements all the way around, this is about as beautiful as it gets without going overboard.