British coach builder’s latest project looks the part of an all-conquering supercar

Ever since Kahn Design teased the Aston Martin DB9-based WB12 Vengeance in May 2015, updates on the car have been few and far in between. Actually, there hasn’t been so much as a peep about the project, at least until recently when the British tuner announced that the car would make its long-awaited debut at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show.

The announcement is the latest indication that Kahn Design is serious about its attempt to become a full-fledged coach builder after establishing a reputation as one of the best Land Rover tuners in the world. It’s worth noting that it was just last year at the same event that Kahn unveiled the Land Rover Defender-based 105 Longnose and the 110 WB 6x6 Flying Huntsman SUV. For an encore, the company is setting the stage for the WB12 Vengeance’s debut, and while the full swath of details have yet to be revealed, Kahn has provided a few specifics about the car, including the meaning behind its name. For instance, the WB stands for wide body while the 12 understandably points to the car’s 6.0-liter V-12 engine.

Kahn also indicated that the inspiration behind the WB12 Vengeance is the first-generation Vanquish, the Ian Callum-penned model that launched Aston Martin into the new millennium. Apparently, at least according to Kahn, Aston Martin hasn’t come close to replicating the kind of design impact the original Vanquish had when it burst into the scene back in 2001.

So, he’s taking matters into his own hands with the WB12 Vengeance. The question now is this: will the WB12 Vengeance live up to expectations? The answer to that will be determined at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show.

Continue after the jump to read the full review.

Exterior

2016 Aston Martin WB12 Vengeance By Kahn Design Exterior
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The only thing about the WB12 Vengeance that has been shown to the public is its exterior. Kahn Design rolled out teasers back in May 2015 and again a few days ago to show what we can expect from the aesthetic modifications.

The most noticeable change is the custom billet aluminum front grille that instantly changes the WB12 Vengeance’s front fascia compared to the standard DB9.

The most noticeable change is the custom billet aluminum front grille that instantly changes the WB12 Vengeance’s front fascia compared to the standard DB9. Another notable exterior modification is the composite front bumper that’s been combined with a carbon splitter. Wide fenders and side skirts have also been added into the mix, as well as a custom hood and roulette-style LED taillights that provide another unique difference from the standard DB9. The last piece of modification is the new set of staggered 20- and 21-inch wheels with 16- and 18-spoke designs on the front and rear, respectively.

In addition to the inspiration drawn from the original Aston Martin Vanquish, the WB12 Vengeance’s design is also reportedly meant to evoke the spirit of a saber-tooth tiger. Take that for what it’s worth.

Interior

2016 Aston Martin WB12 Vengeance By Kahn Design Interior
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Not much is known about the car’s interior, although I suspect that it’s going to be completely refreshed with some of the finest materials Kahn Design can come up with. Knowing how meticulous the company is with its projects, expect generous helpings of leather and Alcantara and touches of carbon fiber. That’s probably on the low-end of expectations, so I suppose more details will be on the way when the car takes to the showroom floor at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show.

Drivetrain

2016 Aston Martin WB12 Vengeance By Kahn Design Exterior
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Here’s the little tricky part about this program. Back in May 2015, Kahn Design founder Azfal Kahn said that the WB12 Vengeance won’t have any performance modifications, calling the project “coachbuilding in its traditional sense”.

Now I know that taking him at his word is probably the prudent thing to do, but it is important to remember that those comments were said nine months ago. As mothers would know, a lot of things can happen in that period of time.

For now, or at least until further notice, treat the WB12 Vengeance as a project on aesthetics. Expect the output out of the car’s 6.0-liter V-12 engine remain capped at 510 horsepower and 457 pound-feet of torque.

Pricing

Past reports indicate that Kahn Design plans to build 20 units of the WB12 Vengeance. Pricing details have yet to be revealed, but don’t expect it to sell for anywhere close to the almost-$200,000 price tag of the latest DB9. By all indications, the WB12 Vengeance will cost significantly more, probably the neighborhood of $270,000 to $300,000.

Competition

Mercedes-AMG GT S by Renntech

Mercedes-AMG GT S By Renntech
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Back in January 2016, Renntech released its new R1 performance package for the AMG GT S. At the time of its announcement, it wasn’t clear if the AMG GT S would be the recipient of any racing stripes, decals, or fancy wheels. But, that’s not the important item about this program.

The R1 performance package is all about the engine modifications, so work was done to the car’s 4.0-liter, Biturbo, V-8 engine. The end result is pretty significant considering that the output was increased by an extra 65 ponies and 110 pound-feet of torque, bringing the total number up to 611 horsepower and 620 pound-feet of torque. Those are enough to take out the WB12 Vengeance, if Kahn Design doesn’t have any performance upgrades up its sleeve.

Make no mistake, though. The WB12 Vengeance wipes the floor with the AMG GT S as far as aesthetic upgrades are concerned. In a lot of ways, this should make for a great competition between the two, although I’m not quite sure which side to lean on.

Those who favor aesthetics will go for the Aston Martin while those who want more power out of their car will lean on the AMG GT S.

Read our full review here.

Porsche 911 Carrera 4S by TopCar

2016 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S By TopCar High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Here’s a more recent program that ought to be really good considering that both cars are considered rivals to one another. Only a few days ago, Russian tuner TopCar released its latest program for the Porsche 911 Carrera 4S, bringing with it helpings of aerodynamic and performance upgrades that gives the 911 Carrera 4A a refined look with and increase in output.

TopCar’s aerodynamic body kit is available in two versions, including the highly sought-after body kit made from vacuum-formed carbon fiber. The front section received a new bumper with air ducts and LED inserts, hood, front lip, and fender flares. Meanwhile, the rear comes with fender extensions, a new rear bumper, and a diffuser.

Topcar didn’t go into the details of what it did to the 911 Carrera 4S’s 3.4-liter, twin-turbo, flat-six engine. What’s really is important is that TopCar was able to get 80 more ponies out of the engine, bringing the total output up to 500 horsepower. That’s right around what the WB12 Vengeance is capable of, so that should make for a good race between the two cars.

Read our full review here.

Conclusion

2016 Aston Martin WB12 Vengeance By Kahn Design Exterior
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I’m very excited to see what comes out of the Aston Martin WB12 Vengeance. It’s shaping up to be quite the project and, judging by how it looks from those teasers, the car is going to look like what the Aston Martin DB9 should have evolved into. It’s sad that Aston Martin never got to really work on making these changes before ultimately deciding to discontinue the model. But, for what it’s worth, at least Kahn Design is making sure that the last days of the DB9, through the WB12 Vengeance, will be memorable.

  • Leave it
    • * Unlikely to get any engine mods
    • * Going to be very expensive
    • * Limited number
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