Aston Martin Vantage
ACCORDING to Aston Martin, the new Vantage is its most extreme sports car yet – and it’s not wrong. Held up against the Vantage of yesteryear, it’s a completely different beast. Sharing little more than the characteristic boot flick, this could be one of the most important cars ever for the brand. It’s crucial they get it right as the previous Vantage was its bestselling car and for the new age of the British carmaker it needs to stay that way.
Although the old Vantage had a slightly sportier air than other cars in the Aston range – largely because of its association with the World Endurance Championship – the new version has accentuated every aspect of the car’s exterior, like elongated muscles on a big cat. It gets the four-litre twin-turbo engine from the DB11 V8, but despite the size reduction from the previous 4.7 V8 its new power output is up to 503bhp, matching the thuggish old V12 Vantage S.
The V8 is mated to an eight-speed automatic ZF transmission, although that’s not under the bonnet but in the rear for a perfect 50:50 weight ratio. The Mercedes-manufactured powertrain has come from the DB11, and has been modified for the lighter Vantage, with its dry weight coming in 120kg less than the GT car. It still produces the same power but torque is higher at 685Nm, and some minor exhaust pops and bangs have been engineered in for an even more inspiring drive. The Vantage has two personalities, staying true to its racing car pedigree, and can be set up for both road and track. Track models get minor additions, such as the quad-exhaust.
The low riding Vantage draws you closer to the Tarmac, making the car great fun to negotiate around curling hills at high speed. Though it looks like it should be safe only in the hands of a professional racer, Aston has retained the usability seen in its other cars. It remains composed in most situations and when unleashing its power in the right places it becomes a bit of an animal. The show-off nature of this car calls for that raucousness too, and the V8 growl only complements that.
From the front grille with its snout very much to the ground, to the lights that resemble an animal on the hunt, this car will appeal to the boy racer with a little more cash to spend. The near-neon colours available won’t be to everyone’s taste, but fortunately there’s tamer paintwork to choose from, and those looking for even more racer in their car can choose from several carbon-fibre options. Aston has embraced its racing pedigree with the interior of this car too. Compare it to the first of its new generation of cars, the DB11, with its softer set-up and an interior fit for the gentry GT driver. The Vantage is lower to the ground with an interior that brings the brand into the modern day with cleaner lines and plush, but sporty, seats.
The looks alone will have you falling in love with this new Vantage and driving it will only solidify that. It’s technically leaps and bounds ahead of previous models and has a great balance between comfort and sports some rivals overdo. Passion, comfort, and aggression are all rolled into one machine.
The all-new Aston Martin Vantage offers the perfect blend of passion, comfort and sport