26 September 2014

The Aston Martin V12 Vantage S Roadster is the drop-top version of the British manufacturer's best and most desirable model. But can it compare favourably to the brilliantly resolved Porsche 911 Turbo S Cabriolet? Steve Sutcliffe finds out.

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26 September 2014
V12 Vantage S : the last music notes of an engine...

26 September 2014
The Aston's interior looks a bit thrown together to me. What's with the bright orange stripe on the door card, and the yellow one on the seats. And the electric window button, although well placed, looks like something out of an old 1970s Rover. And the vents on the bonnet just look ridiculous, whether they actually do something or not. They clearly need to divert some funding from the vent department to the gearbox division, asap. As for the Porsche - although we're probably bored of looking at them - it's one hell of a tool, in a good sense.

27 September 2014
Another really good video by Steve Sutcliffe, nicely contrasting that charms of the old fashioned Vantage v12 S against the ultra efficient weapon that is the 911 turbo S. Really enjoyed that.

27 September 2014
I drove two PDK Porsches recently and was amazed to find that both lurched on the upshift at high revs. I thought PDK was supposed to be seamless?! One of the advantages of a double clutch box is supposed to be the ability to shift mid-corner without upsetting the balance of the car. Neither the Cayman S or 991 GT3 I drove recently would be able to. This is surely something the UK press should be picking up on, yet every time we are told how utterly brilliant it is? Are Porsche cars immune from criticism these days? How did that happen?

As for PDK I remain totally unconvinced. It has introduced 'built in obsolescence' into cars which is great for manufacturers, not for buyers. No doubt the next generation of PDK will be a big improvement but it is mis-leading to continually proclaim the current system as the finished article. The 991 GT3 system was much better than the Cayman's but it was very far from the perfect paddleshift, contrary to what you read in car mags, the current PDK boxes will be laughed at in 5 years time. Which is just how Porsche like it.

As for the Aston being 'mauled' dynamically I think we can file that under 'most gross and unwarranted exaggeration of the decade'.

28 September 2014
I don't mind the AM is old fashion and all that, but shouldn't it also cost a lot less? I mean they don't spend anywhere near as much as Porsche on development and everything from engine to gearbox and electronics are some 10 years old. So AM is pricing it's cars so high just to offer it's buyers old fashion feel and great noise? In other words just like an American muscle car, only better looking and some hand made parts. This AM should be half the price and they would still make a profit. 

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