2006 Aston Martin
A screaming hunk o' "Yeah, baby!"
Jan. 8, 2007 02:00 PM
The English are known for their reserve, but you might not know it after taking a spin in the Aston-Martin Vantage, a screaming hunk o’ “Yeah, baby!” that’s an undeniable attention-getter. During our test drive, the car drew nonstop double-takes from at traffic lights and on the highway. On the highway, we noticed Jags, Benzes and Bimmers rolling up alongside us, checking out the ride. The all-new, all aluminum alloy V8 blasts your 3461-pound body down the road easily from any of its 6 gears, and, like Dr. Frankenstein, you’re not satisfied until you see it at its full power. The Vantage has a high-pitched rocket-type engine whistle you can hear for blocks before you reach your destination.
Find yourself a country straightaway; when you start seeing farms and silos, let ‘er rip, gripping the small wheel and feeling the tightness of the handling even at insane speed. The V8 Vantage is the second model to use Aston Martin’s unique VH (Vertical Horizontal) architecture. Constructed from lightweight aluminum extrusions, precision castings and pressings, the underframe is bonded with aerospace adhesives and mechanically fixed with self-piercing rivets. And there’s no need to wonder if the Vantage can take all you can dish out; the car has endured some of the most punishing tests in the Company’s 91-year history. 78 prototypes had their brakes mashed, accelerators floored, gearboxes tortured and tires scraped practically bald over more than 11⁄2 million miles, and all that brutality was just to kick out only 2000 Vantages per year. And that means when you buy, you’re purchasing something truly exclusive. The Vantage is built at Aston Martin’s Headquarters at Gaydon, Warwickshire, UK.
Interior: Gone are the here-and-there plastic climate controls of Vantages past, replaced by ultra-cool aluminum, and the whole console lights up like blue Christmas at night. The hand-stitching, the angled windshield and the glass crystal starter button that lights up red when pushed lend it an extra touch of extra class.
Exterior: It’s a low riding race-type sports car with a long, aggressive snout and a stubby, thick rear; squinty rear lights and an almost-horizontal rear window give it a fast look from behind. Colored optional brake calipers add extra hot looks, and the door handle’s a suave, James Bondish solid bar of metal.