Wednesday, February 16, 2011

2011 Aston Martin V8 Vantage S

2011 Aston Martin V8 Vantage S

Aston Martin
will offer this car in coupe and roadster versions complete with V12 Vantage styling. At the rear of the car is a more pronounced deck lid, which Aston claims will reduce lift at high speeds. The carbon fiber rear diffuser will also help airflow from underneath the car. These features may be functional, but they also help to distinguish this new model from the base version in an already tight model lineup. The sporting feel increases further if the driver presses the sport button allowing the exhaust bypass valves to open fully and let out a strong V8 rumble.

Interior appointments are rounded out by embroidered "Vantage S" logos in the carpets and headrests.

Aston Martin builds each of its V8 engines at their facility in Cologne, Germany. Aston Martin wanted this car to be driver-focused with a more involving character overall. The standard Vantage features a 6-speed sport shift transmission that is more than capable of performing well in the car, but Aston engineers wanted more. Utilizing a carbon fiber driveshaft and other performance components, the Vantage S will have weight distribution of 49/51. The Porsche GTS line may be the most compelling comparison considering that it bridges the gap for Porsche between the base models and Turbos. Improved exterior bodywork, tweaked engines, and slight handling improvements make the GTS line a success while keeping the price down from an all out Turbo model. The Carrera GTS produces 408 hp at 7300rpm and 310 lb-ft at 4200rpm.

The Aston packages a more powerful version of its V-8 with some of the V-12 Vantage’s aggressive bodywork.

The automated transmission is standard (read: no available manual) because, Aston tells us, a majority of V-8 Vantage buyers opt for the paddle-shifted Sportshift automatic already.

The Vantage S, which is available as a coupe or roadster, patterns its side sills, rear deck, rear bumper, and carbon-fiber front fascia after those of the V-12 Vantage. A new 19-inch V-spoke wheel design is standard, while lightweight 10-spoke wheels are optional. The rear wheels are a half-inch wider than those of the non-S V-8 Vantage, and all four wheels are wrapped in new Bridgestone Potenza RE050 tires that are 10 mm wider than the base car’s.

Aesthetically, the V8 Vantage S taps its twelve-cylinder sister for exterior looks in both coupe and roadster trim. Acoustically, it gets a new exhaust system and bypass valve tuning to create a "distinctive and highly vocal exhaust note," according to Aston Martin.

Aston sees it as a bridge to the gap between the Vantage GT4 racer and the standard V8 Vantage road car.

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