The model, seen exclusively by Autocar between completion and shipping to Goodwood, a few hours before its official launch, bristles with Aston references freshly and subtly expressed.
DP-100 is intended as a proper GT race car, short-nosed and low, with a cab-forward layout to give maximum space for a large V12-based powertrain behind the driver. In the flesh is looks imposing but compact; nowhere near as large as a full-size Lamborghini for instance.
On the upper flanks there’s well-defined chine-line each side, running from the rear of each front wheel, upward and rearward to define the car’s proportions and especially its prominent rear haunches, which are almost architectural in form.
The car’s styling refers clearly to the Aston Martin One-77 supercar (via a well-defined chine-line that runs around the car and defines its stance), to the recent CC100 anniversary car and even to Aston’s revolutionary mid-engined Bulldog concept of the early 1980s. Designed by the late William Towns, it had the same sort of radically 'waisted' body style.
Race-bred aerodynamics contribute much to DP-100’s overall look, but designers have taken trouble to avoid crudely added wings or cut holes to relieve high pressure areas. In key places air is ducted straight through the car — to benefit of engine and downforce. The central front air intake has an unmissable Aston grille-shape, flanked by a pair of ducts that carry air straight through the body to exit across a very large, Le Mans-style diffuser.
“We designed the car according to a philosophy we call RaceCraft,” explains chief exterior designer Miles Nurnberger, “which combines the no-nonsense requirements of a race car with the kind of beauty and sophistication you find on a really well-crafted road car.
“The design is fully detailed,” he adds. “We’ve created a plausible chassis and a working suspension, a fully equipped cabin and even a complete underbonnet layout, but to see everything we’ve created. You have to play the game.
The cabin is enclosed by forward-opening 'swallow' doors, plausibly designed because they have to open in the GT6 game. The interior takes a lot of influence from the open, spartan CC100 concept, which uses exposed carbonfibre surfaces in many places.
Over DP-100’s front wheel arches (which in race cars are notorious high pressure areas) the designers have provided ducts for the outflow of air, but disguised them brilliantly so that the car’s proportions are not interrupted.
The wheels themselves are a tour-de-force; they are fitted with hinged carbonfibre blades, looking a little like jet engine intake compressor blades, which bend outward under the wheel’s rotational forces to create a smooth disc at high speed, for lowest aerodynamic drag. The wheels fit closely into the plainly styled wheel arches, and wear 255/40x20in Michelins in front, and 295/40sx20s behind.
The colour scheme — a kind of metallic China-white on the left and right extremities, with a purple expanse on the nose, the two major colour patches separated by a line of luminous orange — may not describe very well, but it looks amazing in the flesh, doing what so much of the restr of the car does, suggesting a life in racing but doing it with greater-than-usual design sophisticated.
Nurnberger reckons his favourite DP-100 features are a tail light treatment made up of an exotic array of light-sticks (they look more like something out of a museum of modern art) a pair of tiny headlights each buried in the entrance to matching NACA ducts on the short nose, that gather air for other uses, a pair of extravagantly curved pieces that define the car’s upper proportions (Nurnberger calls them floating cant rails).
Kazanori Yamauchi, who watched DP-100 evolve, says he’s delighted with the result: “When I first came face to face with this car I was at a loss for words. It is is clean and classy, and also very emotional. Here was this future Aston Martin in front of me, so detailed it could be released on the market pretty much as it.”