BACK IS­SUES

Just the thing to com­plete your Van­tage col­lec­tion

VANTAGE - - The Specialist Post Vintage - SPEC­I­FI­CA­TION En­gine Power Torque 0-60mph Top speed

3995cc, in-line 6 236bhp @ 5000rpm 265lb ft @ 4000rpm 9.0sec 130mph

5340cc, V8 375bhp @ 5500rpm n/a 5.3sec 170mph

With the Vi­rage run­ning out of steam in the mid-1990s, Aston Martin re­launched the model as the V8 Coupé – ba­si­cally a Vi­rage with re­vised body­work in­spired by the new twin-su­per­charged Van­tage model, in­clud­ing its faired-in head­lamps and four round tail-lights. Power was slightly up, the ac­cel­er­a­tion slightly sharper and the top speed was quoted, not ter­rri­bly help­fully, as ‘over 155mph’. An im­prove­ment in al­most ev­ery way over the Vi­rage, sales were, how­ever, glacially slow. Just 101 Coupés and 63 Volantes were sold. Aston couldn’t sur­vive build­ing hand­fuls of hand­built su­per­cars; a more af­ford­able model was needed. Ford, who had bought a ma­jor­ity share in AML in 1987, knew this and in 1994 launched the Ian Cal­lum-styled DB7 – evok­ing mem­o­ries of the 1960s DB cars – with a su­per­charged 3.2-litre straight-six and a steel mono­coque that had its ori­gins at Jaguar (Ford-owned at the time). A Volante fol­lowed in 1996. DB7 sales even­tu­ally topped 7000, mak­ing it then by far the most nu­mer­ous Aston. Buy­ing guide, Van­tage is­sue 3.

SPEC­I­FI­CA­TION En­gine 5935cc, V12 Power 510bhp @ 6500rpm Torque 420lb ft @ 5750rpm 0-60mph 4.1sec Top speed 190mph

The no­tion of shoe­horn­ing Aston’s 5.9-litre V12 into the com­pact V8 Van­tage was al­ways amus­ing, and when Aston turned the con­cept into re­al­ity in 2009 it pro­duced one of the finest driv­ers’ cars in its his­tory. Dis­tin­guished by its rows of (func­tional) bon­net vents, the V12V builds on the V8 Van­tage’s agility and adds another di­men­sion of per­for­mance and de­sir­abil­ity. The Road­ster ar­rived in late 2012. Best of all, though, is the 565bhp ‘S’ launched in 2013. With a top speed of 205mph, it’s the fastest se­ries-pro­duc­tion Aston ever.

SPEC­I­FI­CA­TION En­gine 5204cc, biturbo V12 Power 600bhp @ 6500rpm Torque 516lb ft @ 1500rpm 0-60mph 3.7sec Top speed 200mph

The first all-new pro­duc­tion car of the Andy Palmer era, the DB11 is the most im­por­tant new Aston Martin since the launch of the DB9 – the car it re­places – more than a decade ago. With a brand new, highly ef­fi­cient twin-turbo 5.2-litre V12, a raft of new elec­tronic sys­tems cour­tesy of tech­nol­ogy part­ner Daim­ler, and in­no­va­tive aero­dy­namic fea­tures, it’s the stan­dard-bearer for Aston’s so-called Sec­ond Cen­tury Plan. In char­ac­ter, it’s a con­sum­mate GT car, but also a daz­zlingly quick one. Aston’s fu­ture looks very bright in­deed.

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