2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress
Motoring News

2018 Aston Martin Vanquish: ‘Successor to a sporting dynasty’

  • Bold new look, intensified performance and dynamics
  • Twin-turbo V8 four-litre engine, eight-speed ZF transmission
  • Maximum speed 312km/h and 0-100km/h in 3.5sec
2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress
2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress

GAYDON, England – For seven decades, Aston Martin says, the Vantage badhe has been worn by some true icons. It was first used in 1951 on a high-output engine option for the DB2 but quickly established itself as a unique model.

Among its highlights are a William Towns-designed V8 Vantage, spectacular twin-supercharged V600 Le Mans and the V8 Vantage. Today this formidable sporting dynasty is poised to hit new heights with the introduction of the 2018 Vantage.

2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress
2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress

“A spectacular new Aston Martin sport car,” the automaker says, “demands a bold and distinctive design language so pure sculptural forms create an athletic, predatory stance, while the minimal front and rear overhangs, muscular flanks and broad haunches express inherent agility and dynamism.

“New head and tail-lights carve dramatic signatures for an unmistakable road presence and contribute to a strong and individual identity within the growing Aston Martin model range.”

2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress
2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress

Aerodynamic performance, Aston says, was central to the Vantage design with the front splitter directing airflow below the car, A system of fences channels cooling air where it is needed and ensures the rear diffuser is fed with airflow.

“The design of the diffuser,” Aston says, “creates an area of low pressure air while preventing turbulence generated by the rear wheels from disrupting the flow of air exiting  from beneath the car.”

2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress
2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress

Together with the new side “gills” and pronounced upswept boot lid, the Vantage generates a significant level of downforce – described by Aston as “a rarity on any production car and a first for a core Aston Martin model”.

‘IMMERSIVE EXPERIENCE’

The automaker describes the car’s cabin as “dynamic and focused”, one which “as rejected long, fluid, curves in favour of sharp lines”.

“The high-waist interior theme and low driving position,” AM says, “create a more immersive driving experience and contribute to significant gains in occupant space and significant improvement in headroom compared with the outgoing Vantage.”

A combination of rotary and toggle controls have been specified for their feel and intuitive functionality. The P-R-N-D transmission buttons have been moved into a triangular cluster.

The cabin also has generous stowage with room behind the seats and double-tier storage areas.

2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress
2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress

The heart of the Vantage is Aston Martin’s potent new alloy four-litre twin-turbo V8.  It’s slung low and as far back in the chassis as possible for optimal centre-of-gravity and 50:50 weight distribution and can return 380kW at 6000rpm and 685Nm from 2000-5000rpm.

IMPRESSIVE POWER / TORQUE

Its dry weight of 1530kg means formidable power-to-weight / torque-to-weight ratios and detailed tuning of the induction, exhaust and engine management systems has given the Vantage a truly intoxicating character and exhaust note.

The Vantage deploys its impressive power and torque to the rear wheels via a rear-mounted ZF eight-speed automatic transmission. It’s capable of 0-100km/h in 3.5sec and 300km/h+, watched over by a sophisticated suite of electronic systems.

It is also the first Aston Martin to have an electronic rear differential linked to the car’s electronic stability control. It can interpret the car’s behaviour and react to direct the engine’s torque to the relevant wheel in milliseconds.

2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress
2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress

At higher speeds, the differential’s speed and sensitivity of response enables the system to take very fine control of the car’s dynamic behaviour. It makes the car feel much more composed both in terms of its straight-line stability and its cornering performance.

CHASSIS HIGHLIGHTS

The chassis is an evolution of the latest-generation bonded aluminium structure first seen on the DB11, though some 70% of the structure’s components are new for Vantage. Balance, strength, rigidity and weight efficiency were all priorities in the new Vantage design, as were handling purity and consistency.

Highlights of the chassis include a solidly mounted rear sub-frame for an enhanced feeling of direct connection for the driver, new Pirelli P Zero tyres developed specifically for new Vantage and the latest generation adaptive shock-absorbers which incorporates Skyhook technology and offers the choice of Sport, Sport Plus and Track modes.

Thanks to full integration of engine, transmission, E-Diff, torque Vectoring, stability control, adaptive shocks and the electric steering assistance, each mode optimises every area of the car as one. “With each step the Vantage gains in agility and responsiveness,” AM says, “its character becomes sharper, more vocal, more exciting.

2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress
2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress

“This is the essence of the Vantage driving experience – a car that’s never less than connected and engaging with the breadth of capability to revel in challenging roads and bare its teeth on track.”

The Vantage features a high level of standard equipment, including keyless start/stop, tyre-pressure monitors, and parking radar front and rear.

READ MORE Aston Martin features on Carman’s Corner

The car’s ntertainment system – controlled and viewed through a central 20cm liquid-crystal display  – uses Bluetooth audio and phone streaming, iPod, iPhone and USB playback, and satnav.

2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress
2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress

“Being an Aston Martin,” its maker promises, “the new Vantage also has a high level of craftsmanship – flawless paintwork, Alcantara and leather upholstery, and finishes optimised through the use of natural materials of the highest quality.”

There is also, AM says, extensive scope for personalisation – forged alloy wheel rimss in a variety of finishes, Sports Plus Collection (special seats and steering-wheel), carbon-fibre interior and exterior detailing and a premium audio system.

2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress
2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress

Aston Martin’s president CEO, Andy Palmer, said told Carman’s Corner in a media communication: “It speaks volumes for the outgoing Vantage that it is the single most successful model in Aston Martin’s history. Creating a worthy successor has been a challenge to relish and a huge source of motivation.

“I’m enormously excited by what we’ve created: a Vantage that’s more explicit in looks and intent, wrapping heart-pounding performance and dazzling dynamics into an everyday-us package. A true sport car with a sharper look and a keener dynamic edge – the pure driving machine enthusiasts have been waiting for.”

Deliveries are scheduled to begin during the second quarter of 2018. Check with your local dealer for prices.

2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress
2018 ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH: Image Aston Martin / Newspress

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