Aston Martin V8 Vantage

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Aston Martin V8 Vantage driven by a famous Japanese automobile writer. His comments are made in Japanese.

See also Aston Martin V8 Vantage for other models sharing this name

Aston Martin V8 Vantage
Manufacturer:   Aston Martin Lagonda Limited
Production: 2006 present
Class:  Grand Tourer
Body style:2-door Coupe
Platform: FR Ford VH platform
Engine: 4.3 L AJ V8
Similar: Porsche 911

The modern Aston Martin V8 Vantage is a sports car. Aston Martin previously used the “Vantage” name on high performance variants of their existing models, and notably used the “V8 Vantage” name on their Virage-based supercar of the 1970s and 1980s. The modern car, in contrast, is the smallest car in Aston’s three-model lineup, and is intended as a more accessible model to compete with the Porsche 911.

Introduced all-new for the 2006 model year, the V8 Vantage was first seen at the Geneva Motor Show in 2005. The two seat, two door coupe has a bonded aluminum structure for strength and lightness. The 172.5 inch (4.38 m) long coupe features a hatchback-style tailgate for practicality, with a large luggage shelf behind the seats.

The V8 Vantage is powered by a 4.3 L (4282 cc) quad-cam 32-valve V8 which produces 380 hp (283 kW) at 7,000 rpm and 302 lb-ft (409 N/m) at 5,000 rpm. Though based loosely on Jaguar’s AJ-V8 engine, this engine is unique to Aston Martin and features race-style dry-sump lubrication, which enables it to be mounted low in the chassis for an improved centre of gravity. The cylinder block and heads, crankshaft, connecting rods, pistons, camshafts, inlet and exhaust manifolds, lubrication system, and engine management are all unique to the Aston Martin version. The V8 is assembled by hand at the AM facility in Cologne, Germany, which also builds the V12 for the DB9 and Vanquish.

The engine is front mid-mounted with a rear-mounted transaxle, giving a 49/51 front/rear weight distribution. The V8 Vantage can accelerate to 60 mph (97 km/h) in a manufacturer claimed 4.9 seconds (62 mph (100kph), 5sec) and reach a 175 mph (280kph) top speed. As a testament to the car’s performance, handling, and endurance, an almost-stock Vantage entered and completed the 2006 Nurburgring 24-Hour race finishing 24th overall at the race, among a field of largely motorsport-homologated cars. The only modifications to the car were a roll cage, racing fuel system, fire protection, racing seat, and hydraulic jacks. The car was otherwise completely standard, including a regular production engine, transmission, syspension, and bodywork.

The V8 Vantage retails for $110,000, £79,000 or ¬104,000 and Aston Martin plans to build up to 3,000 per year. Included with is an exclusive interior with leather-upholstery for the seats, dash, steering-wheel, and shift-knob. A two-tone full-leather interior is available as an option, as are heated front seats, navigation, rear parking sensors, and xenon headlights.

There will also be a V8 Roadster in early 2007.

In their 2006 readership survey, readers of Car Design News voted the Aston Martin V8 Vantage as the best current production car design. The survey results were based on over 1000 responses, most from working automotive designers and students of industrial and automotive design.

The V8 Vantage is one of the only two cars to be added to ‘the fridge’ on the BBC’s Top Gear. The programme rates cars from seriously un-cool to sub-zero. The fridge was an extra category added when the presenters deemed the Aston Martin DB9 too cool for the sub-zero category.

Scribbled on September 25th 2006 in robson.m3Rlin.org
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