2012 Aston Martin Virage - front three-quarter view

It's said that middle children have it worst, and that's certainly the case for the Aston Martin Virage: after only 18 months of life and little more than 1,000 units sent into the world, it's reportedly being sent to The Great Crusher in the Sky. Anointed as a stepping stone from the slightly softer, 470-horsepower DB9 to the rowdier 510-hp DBS, it looks like the 490-hp Virage simply can't make a case for itself in light of the evolution of the DB9.

Looked at from another angle, however, what we had in the Virage isn't really going away. Speculation is that the next DB9 will get a bump to 500 hp and some One-77 styling cues, which would effectively make it the Virage – in fact, spy shots have revealed a new DB9 that looks dead-on the Virage. On top of that, with Aston said to be moving away from DB[X] nomenclature to proper nouns, even the Virage name might be retained, so we ought not tip our 40s just yet.