Category Archives: Aston Martin

Aston Martin, Red Bull Unveil AMB-RB 001

These days the number of companies that are capable of creating a true hypercar has dwindled to a select handful of companies with an established pedigree. Aston Martin has boldly proclaimed that it is one of these companies, and has unveiled its most potent hypercar ever the AMB-RB 001.

Developed in a collaboration with Red Bull’s racing program, Aston Martin claims that the sleek two seater will arrive in 2018 and will be crafted on an all new carbon fiber structure. The car will be assembled in Aston’s Gaydon AMB-RB 001 rear fascia England plant, and also be built in the same hallowed confines that once housed the One-77. Aston claims that the AMB-RB 001 will share a unique degree of exclusivity, with the company only producing 99 to 150 copies which includes the initial prototypes.

Twenty five of these models will be built exclusively for the track, with Red Bull claiming AMB-RB 001 side profilethat the customer list  “reads like a who’s who of F1 legends, moguls, and megastars.” This is elite company, and should prove to be a very potent bragging point at dinner parties.

Both companies did not reveal further technical details about the fruit of their recently minted alliance, but did promise that the car would offer “unprecedented levels of downforce” created by aerodynamic features underneath the car. This in turn allowed the designers to produce the bold swoopy angles that define the visual statement of the car. The V12 will retain the naturally aspirated layout that is seen in other Aston models, but the suspension and transmission technology is all new, and was designed by Red Bull engineers.

The end result is a power to weight ratio that equates to one horsepower per kilogram or 2.2 AMB-RB 001 far shotpounds. The project will be jointly marshalled by both firms with Aston chief creative officer Marek Reichman and chief special operations officer David King overseeing the formal build. Meanwhile, Red Bull’s side will be covered by chief technical officer Adrian Newry.

“The synergy between Red Bull Racing and Aston Martin is clear” stated Newey. I knew Red Bull Racing had the ability to handle pure performance aspects, but Aston Martin’s experience of making beautiful fast and comfortable GT cars is of great benefit to the project.”

Aston Martin Unveils GT12 Vantage Roadster

When Aston Martin unveiled the GT12 Vantage, the track focused variant not only pushed the limits of Vantage performance, but also showed just how potent the 10+ year old Vantage still is when controlled by skilled hands. However, it needed something a bit more special and Q by Aston Martin has delivered with a one-off GT12 Vantage roadster that’ll be making its debut at the 2016 Goodwood Festival of Speed.

Crafted for a customer in Europe, the GT12 roadster shares many of the same styling cues that made their debut on the coupe including its newly sculpted hood. Chopping the roof off such a track focused beast may seem a bit Questions GT12 roadster rear eccentric, but the chance to hear the full sound track of the engine while also soaking up the sunshine is a compelling treat that makes the effort worthwhile.

In addition to its race focused styling cues, the roadster also carries over with the coupe’s carbon fiber body panels which help shed 330 Aston GT12 roadster front fascia lbs despite the addition of the heavier soft top assembly. This focus on weight loss allows the car to be more buttoned down on the track while still offering enough comfort to tackle street driving.

Performance for the GT12 roadster is shared with the coupe and comes from a tweaked 6.0 liter naturally aspirated V12 engine. Good for 592 horsepower and 461 lb-ft of torque, these figures should be enough for it to shred lap records with 0 to 60 times roughly mirroring its coupe sibling. A seven speed SportShift III automatic transmission is the sole choice avalible but Aston claims that it produces quicker shifts than a traditional manual gearbox.

Pricing for the roadster has not been released, but look for the model to be more expensive than the $343,000 base price wielded by the coupe. Being a one-off piece, the roadster will most likely spend the majority of its life in a garage after it makes its apperance in Goodwood, but we hope the owner will let it go for a jaunt on sunny days.

Aston Martin Unveils Vanquish Zagato

With the prestigious Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este scheduled to take place at Lake Como in just a few days, Aston Martin And Zagato have unveiled their latest masterpiece, the Vanquish Zagato coupe.

The fifth such vehicle to carry the Zagato moniker, the Vanquish Zagato highlights the 50 years partnership between the two firms, and follows up on its predecessors the 1960 DB4 GT Zagato, the 1986 V8 Zagato, the 2002 DB7 aston-martin-vanquish-zagato-concept_05_resizedZagato, as well as the 2011 V12 Zagato. The exterior styling of the Vanquish Zagato is a tasteful blend of Aston Martin and Italian styling cues with Aston’s signature proportions remaining intact. However the rear of the car features Zagato’s trademark round headlights, and is decidedly more aggressive looking than the standard Vanquish.

In addition to its slick styling, the Vanquish Zagato also features a high degree of purposeful functionality which includes a bigger front grille, massive side skirts, and a aston-martin-vanquish-zagato-concept_10_resizedrevamped rear diffuser that blends in with the forementioned skirts to produce a distinctive profile that stands out in a crowd. This functionality will undoubtedly enhance its aerodynamics but it’s unknown by how much.

It’s also capable of standing out when pushed on a track, and while Aston is keeping performance details under wraps until the big unveiling, look for the car to still feature a V12 power plant, but with slightly more horsepower than before which should please performance minded buyers. Expect the eight speed automatic to also be retained, but with similar tweaks to help it take full advantage of its newfound aggression.

Look for more information to be revealed when it makes its debut in Italy including whether it will achieve limited production status like its predecessors. If it does, expect the Zagato version to wield a sizable premium over the base car’s MSRP. But that shouldn’t stop well heeled buyers from adding one to their car collection.


Aston Martin Unveils GT8 Vantage

Following the early release of a teaser sketch that was leaked back in March, Aston Martin has fully revealed the GT8 Vantage which serves as a sequel to the limited production GT12 model.

Like the GT12, the GT8 was designed to embody the company’s racing heritage, and it’s exterior styling shares many traits with its Le Mans racing counterpart. A new body kit Aston Martin Vantage GT8. April 2016Photo: Drew Gibsonhelps improve the car’s aerodynamics and features a bigger front splitter, revised side skirts, and a beefy rear spoiler that generates maximum downforce.

In addition to looking good, the new suit of clothes also helps shed weight thanks to new body panels that are made entirely out of carbon fiber. This allows the GT8 to not only be the lightest production Vantage ever built, but also the most powerful thanks to a tweaked 4.7 liter V8 that makes a healthy 446 horsepower.

All of this raw power is channeled to the rear wheels through either a standard six speed manual transmission or the optional seven Aston Martin Vantage GT8. April 2016Photo: Drew Gibsonspeed SportShift II single clutch automated manual. Buyers can also choose how extensive the weight savings are with the company offering an optional carbon roof and polycarbonate windows. However, the interior has not completely forgotten its luxurious side and can be equipped with a stereo and A/C to make the driving experience a bit more pleasurable.

The GT8 will also debut three optional “halo” color schemes – China Grey mixed with blue, Stratus white with green, and Stirling Green (pictured) with lime contrast details. Pricing is expected to start at £165,000 ($233,880) with production being limited to 150 copies. Annoyingly like the GT12, this model will remain a Europe only treat with no plans for a North American introduction. While emissions and safety regulations are the most likely reasons behind this move, the GT8 would have added some much needed energy to its U.S. lineup especially in terms of sales and overall momentum.



Aston Martin To Launch Race Inspired GT8 Model

With the sucess of the GT12 Vantage, Aston Martin has revealed that it plans to launch a V8 powered sequel that focuses on racing and intense track work for 150 lucky buyers.

Known as the GT8, Aston Martin’s newest Vantage offshoot would be powered by a tweaked version of the familiar hand built 4.7 liter V8 according to a report released by British magazine Autocar. It’s unknown how much power it would produce in GT8 guise, but expect the figure to be higher than the 430 horsepower that defines the GT and Vantage S models. Transmission choices are unknown, but Autocar claims that buyers will be able to choose from either a standard seven speed manual gearbox or the optional SportShift II automatic transmission.

The exterior styling of the GT8 is also expected to borrow heavily from the GT12 playbook with the GT8 featuring carbon fiber body panels. These body panels would make the GT8 the lightest road legal Vantage ever produced. A rudimentary sketch that was included with the company’s invitation to select buyers revealed that the model would get a GT12 style bodykit and include items such as a rear wing, beefy front splitter, and a prominent rear air diffuser.

The interior is also expected to include plenty of race inspired cues and reward buyers with features such as race inspired seats, carbon fiber trim elements, and copious amounts of Alcantara and leather appointments.

Aston Martin plans to only build 150 examples of the GT8 which is slightly higher than the 100 unit run achieved by the GT12. The apperance of the GT8 will coincide with Aston’s plans to introduce two limited edition models per year. The GT8 would be the first model to appear, which means that one more model will make its debut before the end of the year possibly on the Vanquish platform.

Lastly the GT8 could be the first limited edition Aston model to be offered on U.S. shores. If that’s the case, it would end a several year drought, and bring something unique to U.S. showrooms.


Final Round Of DB11 Pictures Leak Onto The Internet

The 2017 Aston Martin DB11 is supposed to make its official debut at the Geneva Motor Show. However with the multiple image leaks that have occurred, Aston’s plans for a smooth launch have been effectively derailed which is good news for eager automotive enthusiasts looking to get an early glimpse at one of the most important models that Aston Martin has ever produced.

Unlike other image leaks, these images appear to have originated from a factory set of photos, and provide the clearest look yet at the Aston-Martin-DB11_CS3futuristic styling that will define Aston Martin’s long term revival strategy. The images were obtained by the folks from Carscoops via an undisclosed source on the internet. The clearer images help provide a better look at the side profile of the car, and it appears to retain some of the clean lines and basic styling elements that helped make the DB9 look so stylish. The rear fascia also shares some inspiration with the ultra limited production CC100 Concept which can easily be seen in the aggressively refined tail lamp elements. This is clearly a step up over the old DB9, and we are curious to see how the styling measures up against rivals especially from Ferrari, Lamborghini, and even Bentley.

Detailed images of the interior were not among those leaked, but look for the opulently equipped cabin to fully embrace the company’s recent connection with Mercedes Benz especially with the design of Aston-Martin-DB11_CS5the instrument cluster, center console, as well as some of its electronic goodies.  The DB11’s performance hardware is also expected to infuse its own bits of Benz technology with a pair of twin-turbochargers breathing new life into the iconic V12 engine. Look for the automatic transmission to also be updated, and perhaps finally embrace the dual-clutch technology that has become an accepted requirement of modern day supercars versus the occasional herky jerky sensations that define the current six speed TouchTronic 2 transmission.



Aston Martin Teases DB11 Ahead Of Geneva Debut

With the debut of the DB11 coming ever closer, Aston Martin has released an all new teaser video that provides a captivating glimpse at the next chapter in the iconic DB series of cars, while also paying homage to prior generations of the DB.

The teaser video does not reveal too much information, but it does show that the exterior styling of the car matches up with recent leaks as well as separate sightings by spy photographers. In short, the sheet metal will be all new, but it will still be recognizable as an Aston Martin product. In addition it will also share much of its inspiration with the DB10 movie car which made its first appearance in Spectre. 

Along with the slicker suit of clothes, the DB11 will also herald the launch of an all new platform architecture that will be stronger and lighter than the versatile but aging VH platform that underpins the bulk of Aston’s current lineup. When it eventually makes it way to dealer showrooms, the DB11 will also debut a new version of its iconic V12 engine. While its 5.2 liter size is slightly smaller than the older 5.9 liter 12-cylinder that it replaces, all new twin-turbochargers help maximize power output, with the new engine capable of producing at least 600 horsepower. After the V12 model has a chance to get acclimated in the marketplace, a second DB11 variant will arrive with a Mercedes-AMG sourced 4.0 liter twin-turbocharged V8 that should help open the car up to younger buyers while also increasing fuel efficiency at the same time.

As far as transmission offerings are concerned, Aston Martin has not released any extensive information on that. However, look for an automatic offering to be retained that could debut a replacement for the smooth but equally aging Touchtronic 2 transmission. A manual option could also make an appearance for buyers that prefer to shift themselves. This intrigues us since not only Ferrari and Lamborghini have abandoned the idea of offering the option of a stick, but also in terms of long term viability since manual equipped DB9’s accounted for less than 2 percent of all DB9 sales before being discontinued midway through the car’s production run.


Aston Martin To Slash 15 Percent Of Workforce, Cites Cost Cutting

In a bid to reign in its costs, Aston Martin has revealed that it has cut 300 jobs (15 percent of its workforce) as part of its cost trimming measures.

Unlike other job cuts in the automotive industry, this round of cuts will not affect blue collar worker on the factory floor. Instead, they will be primarily focused in white collar positions at the company’s HQ in Graydon England. The posistions targeted include managers, administrators, and other posistions of similar stature.

An email obtained by Bloomberg revealed that Aston Martin will be offering early retirement packages for affected employees with other packages possibly being unveiled later for employees that refuse to take the initial offer. The actual number of employees affected by these cuts is up in the air with Astin claiming that only 295 workers will be let go. However, a representative from Unite (the union contracted with Aston Martin) claims that the number is slightly higher with 314 workers affected.

“Collective consultation with employed representatives including Unite, has begun and the company is working with them to minimize the risk of compulsory redundancies.” The union revealed in a statement to Bloomberg.

Aston Martin was quick to reveal that the cuts will not affect the company’s current plans for production, but might alter the timetable for new models such as the recently announced DB11, DBX crossover, and other projects in the immediate pipeline.

Aston Martin Reveals DB9 GT Bond Edition

With the newest Bond film Spectre approaching its release, Aston Martin has unveiled the all new DB9 GT Bond Edition and while it may not have the built in machine guns, missiles, and ejector seat that have come to define past Bond movie Astons. It still offers lucky buyers the chance to snag a truly unique vehicle to live out their 007 fanatsies.

The exterior styling of the Bond Edition retains the basic GT formula, but handsome 10 spoke 20-inch alloys help give the car a distinctive presence while a carbon fiber front splitter and diffuser help add a touch of modern style and weight savings to the package. DB9 Bond 3The car also comes equipped with grey brake calipers, and brighter trim for the hood vents, grille. and side vents as well as model exclusive Spectre Silver paint.

The interior of the Bond Edition also embodies the secret agent theme, and incorporates several subtle cues including a model exclusive tread plate, Bond gunbarrel style embroidery on the seat divider, and a custom splash screen for the navigation system. This particular special edition also includes an Alcantara laden steering wheel and is also the only model in the DB9 range to offer the Vanquish’s optional squared off steering wheel.

Performance for the DB9 GT Bond Edition comes from the familiar 6.0 liter naturally aspirated V12 that is shared with other DB9 GT’s. Aspiring secret agents wondering whether it will have enough power to outrun evil super villains will be pleased to hear that it generates a healthy 540 horsepower and an equally potent 457 lb-ft of torque. The dash
to 60 mph zips by in 4.5 seconds, with the top speed arriving at a lofty 183 mph. However the car still retains the older six speed automatic transmission and does not embrace the eight speed unit that already sees duty in the Rapide and Vanquish models.

The Bond edition makes up for this slight deficit by offering buyers a whole suite of Bond themed accessories. While a limited edition trolley bag is available, our favorite is the custom made Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra 150m watch that comes complete with anBond watch Aston Martin branded strap. It does not however feature the built in laser cutter that first made its debut in Goldeneye perhaps in a nod to both practicality and safety.

Andy Palmer CEO of Aston Martin offered his thoughts on the new model stating “In the run-up to the launch of the new film, Spectre, which sees Bond behind the wheel of the DB10, we are very happy to be able to celebrate the partnership with this superb limited edition DB9 GT collector’s item.”

Palmer also revealed that the company is only building 150 examples of the Bond Edition with each example boasting an MSRP of £165,000 ($252,000 USD) which should be a bargain for aspiring secret agents that are looking to add one to their collection.


Aston Martin Confirms DBX, Electric Rapide Models

In an announcement released earlier this week, Aston Martin revealed that it will officially build an all electric version of the Rapide four door sedan as well as the DBX crossover in a bid to drastically improve its fuel economy figures amid newer emissions laws taking effect in China and the U.S. while also serving as Aston’s first ever salvo into the EV market.

Andy Palmer CEO of Aston Martin confirmed that an all electric Rapide was in the works during the 2015 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Prior to this confirmation, the British company first hinted at the possibility of a zero emissions Rapide back in April and this confirmation serves as a key step in the model’s gestation process. When it eventually arrives sometime in 2017, the EV Rapide will help the company comply with stricter fuel economy regulations while still allowing the iconic British luxury car maker to use its tried and true V8 and V12 power-plants in its other models. The appearance of this Rapide variant also coincides with Palmer’s vision of an EV sedan that would be seated above the Tesla Model S sedan in terms of luxury and price.

Speaking of Tesla, Palmer also used Pebble Beach as an opportunity to take a swipe at the California based EV maker in regards to its recently unveiled “Ludicrous Mode” for the Model S claiming “We don’t do Ludicrous because Ludicrous speed is stupid.” Palmer didn’t stop there, and later elaborated further revealing “I think that the fact you could drive a few laps of a decent race course, or race it around the Nordschleife is much more interesting than doing 500 meters in Ludicrous Mode.”

Aston Martin plans to sell a few hundred examples of the electric super sedan per year, and while no official pricing information was released, Plamer did appear to hint that initial pricing would be somewhere between $200,000 and $250,000. For those that are curious, the standard Rapide begins at $205,000 while the range topping Model S is slightly cheaper at $142,000. Palmer also revealed that the new EV would have roughly 800 horsepower, four wheel drive (another first for Aston Martin,) and a 200 mile driving range.

Lastly, Palmer also revealed that the company would be building a production version of the DBX crossover utility vehicle. First shown to the world as a concept at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show, the DBX will make the jump to production towards the end of the decade and be initially available as a plug-in hybrid only with gas and pure electric versions arriving dbx-concept_01shortly afterwards. The DBX will also launch in a four door layout, but it is reported that a two door “coupe” version is also being considered for production. The DBX is expected to not only join the EV Rapide in its quest for cleaner emissions, but also give Aston Martin an entry in the untapped premium SUV segment where it will fight with rivals such as Bentley, Lamborghini, and Rolls Royce for a slice of the SUV sales pie especially in Russia and China.