New Vantage continues the range renewal plan for Aston Martin

New Vantage continues the range renewal plan for Aston Martin

Aston Martin has added a new Vantage model to its range, continuing the comprehensive sports car range renewal that began with the DB11 last year. The latest major model change is another element in the company's business plan that has swung the formerly loss making company into profit this year. 

After the DB11, which replaced the DB9 in late 2016, Aston Martin is now following with a new Vantage; a new Vanquish is also planned.

Aston Martin says the new Vantage is defined by a bold new look, intensified performance and dynamics. It is powered by 4.0-litre, 510PS/685Nm twin-turbo V8 mated to an eight-speed ZF transmission; maximum speed is 195mph (0-60mph in 3.5 seconds). It is the first Aston Martin to be fitted with an Electronic Rear Differential (E-Diff) and deliveries are scheduled to begin in the second quarter of 2018.

Aston Martin President Chief Executive Officer, Dr Andy Palmer said: "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 new Vantage that's more explicit in looks and intent, wrapping heart-pounding performance and dazzling dynamics into an everyday usable package. A true sports car with a sharper look and a keener dynamic edge, the new Vantage is the Aston Martin pure driving machine enthusiasts have been waiting for."

The new Vantage is available to order now with a recommended retail price from GBP120,900 in the UK, EUR154,000 in Germany and USD149,995 in the USA.

Business turnaround

For the first half of the year the company reported pre-tax profits of GBP21.1m (US$27.31m) – reversing a loss of GBP82.3m in the same period of 2016 – on revenues that increased to GBP410.4m from GBP211.8m in the first half of 2016.

The financial turnaround reflects the success of the DB11 model. For the first half, global wholesale volumes rose by 67% to 2,439 vehicles as orders continued to rise in the UK, mainland Europe, the Americas and China. The average selling price per model, excluding special editions, rose 25% to GBP149,000 – principally driven by DB11 – and a higher option take rate across the range.

During the period, Aston Martin also completed a GBP550m refinancing to enhance liquidity, reduce borrowing costs and increase financial reserves.

As the company expands, conversion work is said to be well underway on the new manufacturing facility in St Athan, Wales, where assembly of the upcoming DBX SUV model is due to start in 2019.

Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer has said the extension of the brand's portfolio to add a luxury crossover will transform the company's business model following the replacement of its ageing sports car range.

E-differential

The latest Vantage is the first Aston Martin to be fitted with an Electronic Rear Differential (E-Diff). This differential is linked to the car's electronic stability control system, so it can understand the car's behaviour, and react accordingly to direct the engine's power to the relevant wheel. Unlike a conventional LSD, it can go from fully open to 100% locked in a matter of milliseconds.  At higher speeds, the Electronic Differential's speed and sensitivity of response enables the system to take very fine control of the car's dynamic behaviour, Astoon Martin says. The E-Diff, it is claimed, makes the car feel 'much more composed both in terms of its straight-line stability and its cornering performance, providing the driver with increased levels of confidence to explore and enjoy the car's capabilities to the full'.

The Vantage 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. Highlights of the chassis include a solidly mounted rear subframe 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 Damping System which incorporates 'Skyhook' technology and offers the choice of Sport, Sport Plus and Track modes.

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