The new Aston Martin V12 Vantage is a 700 hp swan song to mark the end of an era



It’s the end of an era for Aston Martin, as it will be discontinuing its twin-turbo 5.2-litre V12 monster of an engine. So as a final farewell, they’ve now fitted the iconic V12 engine into the Vantage – its biggest engine, into the smallest car in its line-up.

Aston Martin says that the new V12 Vantage is the fastest and fiercest car it’s ever built, and is the “ultimate expression of extreme performance and driver-focused thrills”, boasting “blistering straight-line speed and scintillating handling”. And we have no reasons to doubt any of that.

In its final iteration, the quad-cam 60-degree V12 5.2-litres turbocharged engine makes a whopping 700 hp and 753 Nm, with the latter across 1,800 – 6,000 rpm, giving you incredible grunt throughout the engine’s speed range.

Paired to an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission and mechanical limited-slip differential (LSD) on the rear axle, the new V12 Vantage sprints to 100 km/h from a standstill in just 3.4 seconds, onward to a top speed of 322 km/h.

That performance doesn’t come solely from the engine, either, because the Gaydon-based supercar maker has put the V12 Vantage through an extensive weight-loss regime giving it a power-to-weight ratio of 390 hp per tonne – a 20% increase to the V8-powered model.

The weight-saving measures include replacing almost all of its body panels with carbon fibre parts, lightweight battery, and a centre-mounted twin exhaust made from lightweight one millimetre-thick stainless steel. The exhaust system itself already saves 7.2 kg!

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To help with the V12 Vantage’s handling, Aston Martin has also given it a new adaptive damping suspension system that includes anti-roll bars, bushes, springs, and damper assemblies, with a special secondary “tender spring” at the rear to improve ride comfort during normal driving conditions, without affecting the car’s dynamic properties, or so the company claims.

There’s also additional shear panels and bracings to help increase the V12 Vantage’s body lateral stiffness, while the steering system has also been recalibrated to improve steering feel and a sharper response.

And to stop such a viscious rocketship, Aston has fitted the V12 vantage with a set of new carbon ceramic brakes, measuring 410 mm in diameter with a six-piston calipers in front, and 360 mm plus four-piston calipers at the back.

Aside from its abilities to resist brake fade up to temperatures of 800 degrees, the new brakes also save a whopping 23 kg of weight when compared to standard steel brakes – all of that mass is unsprung, which further helps with the supercar’s dynamic capabilities.

Surrounding all the mechanical bits is a thoroughly revised exterior, which measures about 40 mm wider than the staandard Vantage to fit its wider track and fatter tyres. The front grille is also 25% larger to provide more cooling, paired with a massive scalloped vent on the bonnet for the same reason.

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The Aston Martin V12 Vantage also gets a new front splitter, side skirts, rear diffuser, and rear wing to not only add some visual excitement, but also providing up to 204 kg of downforce at top speed. As a buyer, you can choose to delete the rear wing if you find it a little too much – but of course, you’ll be sacrificing downforce too.

Capping it all off is an open rear load space that displays the rear suspensions’ strut braces in full glory, as well as the massive 21-inch wheels, offered in two different designs – with one of them an ultra-lightweight option that shaves off an extra 8 kg.

In contrast to the pumped-up exterior, however, the cabin of the Aston Martin V12 Vantage remains fairly unchanged over the regular V8 model. The V12 Vantage will get the Sport Plus Seats wrapped in semi-aniline leather, and large swathes of carbon fibre trims as standard to mark it out as the range-topping variant.

Buyers can also opt for the manually-adjustable carbon seats, as seen here, which further saves another seven kilos.

However, when we say “buyers”, we really mean future owners, because all 333 units of the V12 Vantage has already been sold out – even though Aston Martin didn’t even provide a price. Let’s just hope we all get to see it on the roads some day.


GALLERY



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