The launch of the Aston Martin Vantage completed Aston Martin's turnaround from 90s failures to its position today as powerhouse in the Supercar scene. The shape of the Vantage blew the world's motoring press away, arguably not since Jaguar's E-Type has a car been so universally acknowledged as Beautiful. Whilst the aesthetics of the car stole the headlines initially on the road the praise continued for this well packaged baby Aston.
A sophisticated and forward thinking design, the two seat, two-door coupé had a bonded aluminium structure for strength and lightness, a 380 BHP V8 Engine was dry sumped allowing for a lower centre of gravity. The engine was front mid-mounted with a rear-mounted transaxle, giving a 49/51 front/rear weight distribution. All of this ensured the car drove as well as it looked and the hatchback-style tailgate added practicality, with a large luggage shelf behind the seats.
As the years progressed the only complaint of the Vantage became that the 4.3 Litre V8 didn't provide enough power, so in 2008 Aston introduced the more powerful enlarged 4.7 Litre Engine giving the car an additional 40 BHP. In 2009 however, came something really special, the V12 Vantage, the marriage of the 6 Litre, 510bhp, V12 motor (borrowed from Aston's flagship DBS model) and the already stellar Vantage platform created a car described by Clarkson as simply "Wonderful, Wonderful, Wonderful".
In addition to the Engine the new car also benefitted from a new rear diffuser, a retractable rear-wing which can be raised or lowered and carbon-ceramic brakes. The obvious visual clues included V12 wheels and a new boot-lid and vented bonnet made from carbon fibre to help decrease the car's weight.
Henry Catchpole's write up for EVO summarised his experience of the car: "There is no doubt that the V12 Vantage is the best car that Aston makes. The best it's made for a while. Crowbarring 50 per cent more cylinders into a small car is childishly appealing to any enthusiast, but there was always the danger that Aston's engineers could have created a caricaturish monster. They haven't. It's got character yet it's refined; it's got instant pace yet a depth that makes you want to live with it. Debonair and unafraid, it feels like a truly British Aston Martin and I love it."
In 2012 the Vantage was replaced with the "S”. Power was upped to 565 hp paired with the updated seven-speed automated manual transmission. Lighter weight, 19” ten-spoke alloy wheels were shod in Pirelli P Zero Corsa tyres. The ‘S’ gained adaptive dampers and carbon ceramic brakes. Outside the car was given a new front grille and badging.
This V12 Vantage S was supplied new directly to a significant partner of Aston Martin in European specification and was used exclusively by a high profile sports personality. Available today with just 750 miles from new, this very low mileage example is specified in Meteorite Silver over Obsidian Black Leather and matching Alcantara headlining. It benefits from Piano Black dashboard inserts, the ten-spoke wheels in satin black and silver calipers on the carbon ceramic discs.
Having been stored with us for the past year, the car is available to view at our showrooms just outside London immediately.