The Aston Martin V12 Vantage has been confirmed as the fastest accelerating series production Aston ever. With a 0-62mph time of 3.9sec and a top speed of 205mph, only the Aston Martin One-77 is faster.
The car, which will commence deliveries at the end of the year, is priced at £138,000 - a modest increase over the standard V12 Vantage's £136,085 price tag.
Among the changes are a revised look that incorporates features such as the front grille from the CC100 concept, a more powerful V12 engine with 565bhp, a seven-speed automated manual gearbox in place of the previous six-speed manual, adaptive dampers and a lower kerb weight.
“I’ve never met anyone who didn’t like the V12 Vantage after driving it,” said Minards, “so we were already in a good place. But the fact that it was so focused meant it wasn’t for all tastes to begin with. We’ve responded to that by making the V12 Vantage S, a car with broadened appeal.”
The key to its greater breadth of ability is the addition of three driving modes: Normal, Sport and Track. Selecting one of these modes alters the firmness of the dampers, throttle response, gearshift speed and timing, exhaust note and steering assistance.
In Normal mode, Minards said, the V12 Vantage S becomes more usable and refined than the V8 Vantage S. In Sport mode, its dynamic attributes closely match the outgoing V12 Vantage’s. In Track mode, the performance of the V12 Vantage S goes beyond that of the V12 Vantage to create the hardest and fastest regular Aston yet made.
At the heart of the uprated Vantage is the latest, fifth-generation evolution of Aston Martin’s normally aspirated 5.9-litre V12, codenamed AM28. The main development for the AM28 over the fourth-generation AM11 unit used in the latest Vanquish, DB9 and Rapide S is a new Bosch engine-management system.
The power of the V12 Vantage S’s engine matches the 565bhp of the Vanquish, a 55bhp increase over the V12 Vantage. Torque is also increased to 457lb ft at 5750rpm, a 37lb ft gain. Low-rev torque is up by 52lb ft to 376lb ft at 1000rpm, the result of which is a flattened and fattened torque curve.
The V12 is mated to a seven-speed automated manual transmission, which has been taken from the V8 Vantage and given a longer final drive ratio to allow for the higher top speed. It is controlled by paddle shifters mounted on the steering wheel.