Currently reading: Aston Martin could cut bespoke V6 engine from future plans
Hybridised six-cylinder unit was set to debut in Valhalla, but AMG partnership could make it redundant
Felix Page Autocar writer
News
2 mins read
25 February 2021

Aston Martin is likely to end development of its bespoke V6 hybrid powertrain in favour of Mercedes-AMG-sourced units for its future models. 

Aston Martin CEO Tobias Moers said in an investor call today that new technical partner Mercedes-Benz is offering to supply the British firm with powertrain components for a "reasonable cost" and suggested that the arrangement could change the shape of its future product strategy. 

The mid-engined Valhalla supercar, previewed by a concept at the 2019 Geneva motor show and due for launch in 2023, is being heavily revised as a result, with a new version set to be shown in the next four months. Its electrified V6, developed in-house by Aston Martin with the aim of "rapidly" rolling it out across the line-up, looks to have now been rendered redundant. 

After making its debut in the Valhalla, the Aston Martin V6 was set to replace AMG's 4.0-litre V8 in the Vantage before being added to the DBX SUV range and an entry-level variant of the DB11 grand tourer.

Previous Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer had expressed concerns that Mercedes-AMG's range-wide engine downsizing didn't fit with the British marque's plans, necessitating the development of a bespoke V6. "Mercedes have made no secret of where their engine technology is moving to, and obviously we don’t foresee four-cylinder engines in our Astons," he said in 2020.

Now, however, Palmer's successor has hinted that the hybridisation of AMG's larger powerplants presents new opportunities for Aston Martin, so there's no longer a place for the bespoke V6 in the line-up. "With the transformational technology agreement with Mercedes-Benz, there are other chances for us regarding combustion engines, but we still have an electrified drivetrain," Moers said.

It's unclear whether the electrified twin-turbocharged V8 used in the upcoming Mercedes-AMG GT 73e 4dr Coupé and S73e would work for the much more compact and mid-engined Valhalla, but further details will be offered when the final production version is shown at the end of spring. 

Palmer had hinted that Aston Martin's V6 would be more powerful than AMG's V8, but with the GT 73e and S73e tipped to offer upwards of 800bhp, courtesy of the boost from a 201bhp electric motor, it would likely have fallen short.

It remains unclear what the V6's cancellation would mean for Aston Martin's financial plans and workforce, as it had been planned for an unspecified external supplier to build the new engine. 

Despite the implied shift away from bespoke powertrains, it remains unlikely that Aston Martin will make use of the electrified four-cylinder engine that will power the next-generation Mercedes-AMG C63 in place of the current car's V8, irrespective of output. 

READ MORE

Aston Martin's new hybrid V6 powertrain to roll out across range​ (from 2020)

Aston Martin plots Mercedes powertrain for revised Valhalla​

Aston Martin to launch 10 new derivatives in two years, says boss

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BenAM13 25 February 2021
6 years old for me watching Casino Royale. I'm only 21 so a little ways to go yet before I buy mine as I'm looking at 25. I agree with your point, I knew electrification was coming in 2030 but I was hopeful that for say the 7 years until then they could use their own V6 but sadly it looks like everything but the V12 is going to be AMG and once that's gone in 2023 every powertrain will be from AMG. I knew it was coming, but it still doesn't sit right right me. Thankfully Aston Martin have already made many beautiful V12s so I will still be a happy owner one day. Which model do you have?
gagaga 25 February 2021

Those worried about engines better not look where the new AMG GT/Merc SL platform is going to be used.

BenAM13 25 February 2021
What are you referring to?
gagaga 25 February 2021

They will be using that platform for the next DB11.  Too tempting to take all that cost out.

BenAM13 25 February 2021
As an Aston enthusiast my interest in them is waning. Once the V12 goes and all power trains are AMG derived (looking increasingly likely) I think I'll be done
gagaga 25 February 2021

It depends how it is handled.  Aston are in no position to fund the huge range of cars they have shown recently, all that smelled as naiive as when Rover bought Qvale.

I am fairly relaxed about some of this - there doesn't seem to be an issue with buyers getting their Bentley, Cayenne or Urus built on a VW Audi platform (and engines).  Using the platform means the more likelihood of a custom aston drivetrain in the future being possible (whatever form that will take by then).

Speedraser 26 February 2021

No, it doesn't depend, and they don't need the huge range of cars they've shown. A Benz-engined and/or platformed "Aston" isn't an Aston. I have zero interest in an Urus/Bentayga/Cayenne - all the same basic vehicle - or a Conti/Pheaton/now Panamera for precisely this reason. Most people don't know, some don't care. Many of us do care, however. This is THE END of Aston. Unforgiveable.

Speedraser 25 February 2021

My worst fears realized, both about Stroll and Moers. I've been an Aston fan since I was about 5 years old. I've been an owner for 12 years, having bought one new Aston and one used, and I still own both. I will NEVER buy an AMG-engined "Aston." An "Aston" with a Benz engine isn't an Aston Martin. Period. End of story. A crying shame, and the end of a great marque.

BenAM13 25 February 2021
6 years old for me watching Casino Royale. I'm only 21 so a little ways to go yet before I buy mine as I'm looking at 25. I agree with your point, I knew electrification was coming in 2030 but I was hopeful that for say the 7 years until then they could use their own V6 but sadly it looks like everything but the V12 is going to be AMG and once that's gone in 2023 every powertrain will be from AMG. I knew it was coming, but it still doesn't sit right right me. Thankfully Aston Martin have already made many beautiful V12s so I will still be a happy owner one day. Which model do you have?
Speedraser 26 February 2021

Ben, it's reassuring to hear that this matters to young people! I have a 2005 Vanquish S, bought 6 years ago, and a 2009 V8 Vantage bought new.

BenAM13 26 February 2021
Ohh very nice cars. Funnily enoguh I saw a second gen Vanquish S today. Aston Martin Newcastle has a Vanquish S in like yours until recently it caught my attention when I was there

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