Imagine having a “F1-inspired” 6.5-litre V12 engine behind your back, yet your only way of enjoying it is cocooned inside a carbon fibre tub. Ever seen a F1 car with a covered driver compartment? Neither have we, so why would you still limit yourself to the normal coupe-style Valkyrie, when Aston Martin now offers the same car in a Spider body style?
Unveiled at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance last week, the new Aston Martin Valkyrie Spider promises to offer an “unbeatable sensory stimulus”, as having the roof off now gives you unhindered access to the full range of the high-revving V12 engine’s sensuous voice.
Despite removing the roof, the Aston Martin says that the Spider still offers a similar driving experience to the regular Valkyrie. The 6.5-litre V12 hybrid powertrain remains unchanged with an output of 1,155 hp, and it’s also barely gained any weight compared to the Coupe.
With the roof down, the Aston Martin Valkyrie Spider can still reach a top speed of over 330 km/h. Reattaching it back on will give you another 20 km/h on top of that.
For the topless Spider to work, Aston Martin had to tweak the design of its carbon fibre structure in order to shift the structural load usually borne by the roof into the tub of the car. The active aerodynamic and active chassis also had to be specifically recalibrated for the Spider.
Just like the regular coupe version, most of the car’s aerodynamic is handled by the full-length Venturi tunnels that run on either side of the cockpit floor. The body surface of the Aston Martin Valkyrie Spider is devoid of any unsightly appendages, but the car still generates an incredible 1,400 kg of downforce at 240 km/h.
Of course, removing the roof will have its own set of drawbacks. The dramatic gull-wing doors of the coupe variant had to be replaced by a more “regular” front-hinged dihedral items. But to retain some of the hypercar flair, Aston Martin specifically redesigned it to tilt forwards instead of out. We figure most buyers probably will take the trade-off, though.
At least, there’s no faffing about when it comes to removing the roof, as it can be simply lifted off and stowed away on opening the doors. Most of the roof is made up of carbon fibre to save weight, while the two windows at the side (to mimic the look and feel of the regular coupe’s doors and windows) are made of lightweight polycarbonate.
At the launch, Aston Martin Chief Executive Officer, Tobias Moers said, “The Aston Martin Valkyrie is the product of incredible innovation and technology, but above all it has always been about emotion. With the Valkyrie Spider, we are taking that passion and emotion to the next level.
“The driving experience promises to be truly sensational. The sound of that 6.5-litre V12 engine revving to over 11,000rpm with the roof removed is something I cannot wait to hear.”
Its buyers too, we think, as Aston Martin says that the 85-unit-only Valkyrie Spider is already over-subscribed – even before the official unveiling. Allocations will begin shortly, with first deliveries scheduled for the second half of 2022.