Aston Martin CC100 Speedster Concept - front three-quarter view

Aston Martin CC100 Concept interior viewGenerally speaking, today's Aston Martin is known more for its beauty and power than for its minimalism or lightness. But that could change if it decides to produce a version of this CC100 Speedster concept, designed to celebrate the company's centenary. The V12-powered roadster is being unveiled at the Nordschliefe today ahead of the 24 Hours of Nürburgring, where it is expected to lap the circuit with Aston CEO Dr. Ulrich Bez at the wheel. The rakish concept is a nice surprise, and will be run around the circuit along with a 1959 DBR1 with racing royalty Sir Stirling Moss in the driver's seat. No surprise, then, that designers had the company's Nürburgring- and Le Mans-winning '59 racecars in mind when they conceived of this car.

Aston says that the two-seat CC100 Speedster came together in under six months time, carbon fiber bodywork and all. Powered by the British automaker's well-known naturally aspirated 6.0-liter V12 and six-speed sequential manual paddleshift gearbox, the company estimates 0-60 in four seconds and a top speed of 180 mph. Aston claims the butterfly-doored CC100 affords onlookers with "teasing glimpses of potential future design direction," suggesting a pugnacious new face is in store for the company.

Production hopes? None are mentioned, but even if today's Aston isn't known for its minimalism or lightness, it is known for turning concepts into production cars, and we wouldn't be surprised to learn in a few months that a handful of the company's best customers have managed to cajole it into building a handful of examples.

Oh, and about that Stirling Moss connection – forgive us if we're experiencing a bit of déjà vu. After all, doesn't this half-door speedster concept remind you a bit of another car? The Mercedes-Benz McLaren SLR Stirling Moss comes to mind for us. For some reason, however, this doesn't really bother us. If it doesn't bother you either, scroll down for to watch a video from Aston and to find the official press release.

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Aston Martin's radical CC100 Speedster Concept breaks cover

World debut for stunning new CC100 Speedster Concept Naturally aspirated 6.0-litre V12 with automated sequential manual gearbox Features hint at potential future design direction
Aston Martin is celebrating its centenary in world-class style with the debut today (19 May) of the exceptional CC100 Speedster Concept.

Created as a stunning celebration of the great British brand's 100 years of sports car excellence the one-off CC100 looks both to the past and the DBR1 – Aston Martin's greatest sporting triumph on the track – and to the future with its teasing glimpses of potential future design direction.

The 6.0-litre V12-powered concept car today makes its world debut by completing a lap of the famous Nordschleife at Germany's ADAC Zurich 24 Hours of Nürburgring race. It is lapping the circuit together with the 1000km race-winning 1959 DBR1 with British racing legend Sir Stirling Moss at the wheel. It is the most tangible expression yet of the brand's year-long 2013 centenary celebrations.

Viewed by tens of thousands of spectators in Germany, the radical speedster is being driven today by Aston Martin CEO Dr Ulrich Bez. He said: "CC100 is the epitome of everything that is great about Aston Martin. It represents our fantastic sporting heritage, our exceptional design capability, our superb engineering know- how and, above all, our adventurous spirit!

"I have nicknamed it 'DBR100' because of its affinity to the great 1959 race-winning cars and, of course, our 100-year anniversary in 2013. "But this car is more, even, than a simple 'birthday present' to ourselves: it shows that the soul of Aston Martin – the thing that differentiates us from all the other carmakers out there – is as powerful as ever and I very much hope that everyone who catches a glimpse of it at the Nürburgring today enjoys seeing it."

Designed and constructed in fewer than six months at Aston Martin's global headquarters in Gaydon, working with key supplier Multimatic Inc, under the leadership of Special Projects and Motorsport Director David King, the finished look of the two-seater CC100 is the work of Design Director Marek Reichman working alongside the brand's Chief Exterior Designer Miles Nurnberger.

Miles explained: "The brief was very simple, yet enormously testing: create something that reflects the 100 years of Aston Martin heritage and signals the future of the brand.

"The idea of an iconic speedster concept that nods to the Le Mans- and Nürburgring- winning cars of 1959 soon came, and we have had complete freedom to shape this car."

Marek Reichman said: "I'm extremely proud of the entire team at Gaydon for creating this remarkable sports car concept in such a short time.

"The need to create a truly fitting tribute to 100 years of the Aston Martin brand has brought out the creativity and talent that makes Aston Martin such an exceptional luxury sports car maker."
Measuring almost four and a half metres nose to tail, and more than two metres wide (including mirrors) the Speedster Concept body is a classic example of the almost infinitely flexible nature of Aston Martin's trademark Vertical Horizontal engineering philosophy.

With a body and interior crafted from carbon fibre, tooled and provided by low volume specialists Multimatic, the CC100 utilises the latest generation AM11 naturally aspirated V12 gasoline engine mated to a six-speed hydraulically actuated automated sequential manual transmission. Controlled via steering column-mounted paddle shifts the lightweight 'box delivers truly sporting changes perfectly suited to the Speedster's track-focused nature.

The drivetrain will power the CC100 from rest to 60 mph in four seconds, while the top speed is limited to 180 mph.

Dr Bez added: "The future of Aston Martin is, very clearly, more exciting now than perhaps at any time in its history and I'm looking forward to seeing the excitement and anticipation that CC100 creates among Aston Martin owners and enthusiasts worldwide."

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