Aston Martin V12 Vantage S in yellow - front three-quarter view

This is the "something very fast" that Aston Martin teased last week. With a brief to bring "race car performance and technology to the open road," the Gaydon firm introduces the new V12 Vantage S that makes changes throughout compared to the V12 Vantage it replaces.

The heart of the matter is the new AM28 engine, a more evolved species of the 6.0-liter V12 that incorporates features like CNC-machined combustion chambers and hollow camshafts. Power output is 565 horsepower, a healthy 50-horse bump over the outgoing coupe, and 475 pound-feet of torque, a boost of 37 lb-ft. Acceleration from 0-60 miles per hour is expected to come before the four-second mark (down from 4.2 seconds) and the top speed crosses the double-ton to 205 mph, up from 190. It spits out its note through an exhaust adapted from the One-77 and it is now the fastest car Aston Martin makes. In fact, save for the aforementioned One-77, it's the fastest road car in the company's history.

Shifting all that power to the wheels is a seven-speed automated manual transmission. Further honed from its current use in the V8 Vantage S (it's also the 'box from Aston Martin's FIA GT race cars), it gains a gear over the six-speed in the V12 Vantage yet is 55 pounds lighter.

Three-stage adaptive damping confers Normal, Sport and Track modes to the suspension settings and alters the amount of power-assist for the steering. A second, independent Sport setting controls gear selection, throttle response and exhaust note.

Aesthetically, aluminum grille vanes are swapped for carbon fiber or titanium silver mesh inside a grille shell inspired by the CC100 Speedster concept, there are new ten-spoke, 19-inch alloys, the roof goes black and this is the first time customers can spec black pedals.

Pricing hasn't been divulged, but something near $200,000 should get the dealer's attention when it goes on sale. Now that your piggy bank has a reason to die, there's a press release below with more tidbits.
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V12 Vantage S: Aston Martin takes Vantage to extremes

• New AM28 engine generates more power than ever: 565bhp at 6750 rpm
• Debut of new seven-speed Sportshift™ III AMT transaxle
• Top speed climbs to 205 mph


Aston Martin is taking sports car performance to extremes with the announcement of
the new V12 Vantage S.

The new car replaces the outgoing V12 Vantage in markets around the world and, with the exception of the One-77 hypercar, arrives as the fastest road-going Aston Martin yet offered.

Providing the most visceral yet engaging sports car experience in the British luxury car maker's current range, the new V12 Vantage S delivers exceptional sporting agility underpinned by admirable long distance refinement.

Equipped with the new 565bhp Aston Martin AM28 6.0-litre V12 engine, featuring latest generation Bosch engine management, the car is capable of reaching 205 mph.

Peak and low rev torque improves appreciably, too. With 457 lb ft available at 5,750 rpm – up from 420 lb ft previously – the V12 Vantage S is not to be found wanting.

Crucially, too, low rev torque – measured at just 1,000 rpm – leaps from 324 lb ft to 376 lb ft. This serves to both flatten and fatten the torque curve, thereby significantly improving driveability.

Aston Martin Chief Executive Officer Dr Ulrich Bez said: "The new V12 Vantage S is, simply, pure Aston Martin. It is extreme in its nature yet truly timeless in its design language.

"Learning from our successes on the track feeds the development of this type of car and I'm proud to launch such an exciting sports car in this, our centenary year."

Race car technology runs right through the DNA of the V12 Vantage S with, for instance, CNC machined combustion chambers and hollow cam shafts just two examples of track technology feeding through to the road.

Another clear example is the new car's new gearbox. The Sportshift™ III AMT (automated manual transmission) is a major development of the automated manual gearbox that appears in the current V8 Vantage S.

Designed and engineered to exploit the full sporting potential of the V12 engine, the new Sportshift™ III hydraulically actuated automated manual transmission provides motorsport-style paddle shift changes for optimum performance delivery and efficiency. The unit is also appreciably lighter than the outgoing six-speed manual gearbox – saving 55 lb.

This race-derived and motorsport proven technology – used routinely in Aston Martin Racing's race-winning Vantage GT4, GT3 and GTE competition cars – provides for great driver control with only milliseconds of torque interruption and delivers precise and swift gear changes.

The Sportshift™ III transaxle, from transmission experts Oerlikon Graziano, joins an extensive array of new sport- and track-focused developments that ensure the V12 Vantage S is fully equipped to exploit the huge performance potential of its 6.0-litre naturally aspirated AM28 engine.

The debut of three-stage adaptive damping – another 'first' for the Vantage family – allows the driver to more precisely tailor the car's dynamic character. 'Normal', 'Sport' and 'Track' modes provide a broad swath of dynamic performance that can be tuned to better suit the driver's requirements. The system also governs the level of power steering assistance offered.

Working alongside the extended adaptive damping system is a 'Sport' mode, controlled via a button on the centre console, that alters throttle response, gearshift speed and timing, and exhaust note to, once again, tune the character of the car to the driver's requirements.

A whole new exhaust system – derived from that of the One-77 hypercar, no less – is lighter, smaller and, crucially, even more sonorous than that of the outgoing car.

The ZF Servotronic power assisted steering is new, too. With a quicker 15:1 ratio, it is linked to the adaptive damping button and offers two-mode steering assistance designed to best match the 'Sport' or 'Normal' settings generated by the Adaptive Damping System.

Pure power, beautifully presented
The V12 Vantage S has been restyled to reflect is position as the flagship of the new Vantage range.

Most noticeable, perhaps, is the car's grille that does away with the famous aluminium vanes – replacing them with a new carbon fibre arrangement that also includes sporty black carbon fibre or titanium silver mesh. Created to maximize airflow to the V12 engine, the new grille is inspired by that of the remarkable new CC100 Speedster Concept, nicknamed DBR100, which debuted at the 24 Hours of Nürburgring earlier this month and signals a new era of Aston Martin design language.

Other clues that single out the car as new include the debut of new lightweight forged alloy ten-spoke wheels, and a subtle yet distinctive exterior graphics pack that includes black painted roof and part-painted boot panel.

The new V12 Vantage S of course retains the same compact proportions and muscular stance as its predecessor, while features such as the pronounced bonnet vents and flared wheel arches underscore its sporting abilities.

Inside, as out, the new car has been styled to reflect its powerful nature. New-style Sport seating, revised stitching and welt detailing, two leather grade options – Luxmill and semi-aniline – plus the possibility to include Alcantara, present V12 Vantage S buyers with an exciting array of trim choices.

The optional Carbon Fibre Interior Pack, which adds the material to the car's fascia and door pulls, plus the availability for the first time in a V12 Vantage S of black pedals, further enhances personalisation options for those in search of a truly bespoke sports car.

Dr Bez added: "The new V12 Vantage S is our most extreme Vantage to date – engineered to bring race car performance and technology to the open road.

"It is our most powerful engine in a beautifully tailored suit. It is elegant, yet brutal, and it is at the same time easy to control. It has everything that sums up Aston Martin: power, beauty and soul!"

Aston Martin V12 Vantage S specification
Body

• Two-seat, two-door coupe body style
• Extruded bonded aluminium VH body structure aluminium, magnesium alloy, composite and steel body
• Extruded aluminium door side-impact beams
• Halogen projector headlamps (main beam)
• High Intensity Discharge headlamps (dipped beam)
• Black headlamp bezels
• LED rear lamps
• Clear rear lamps with a black border
• Carbon fibre front splitter and rear diffuser

Engine
• AM28 all-alloy, quad overhead camshaft, 48 valve, 5,935cc, V12
• Front mid-mounted engine, rear-wheel drive
• Fully catalysed stainless steel exhaust system with active bypass valves
• Max power: 565 bhp (573 PS) at 6,750 rpm
• Max torque: 457 lb ft (620 Nm) at 5,750 rpm
• Acceleration (estimated): 0-60mph in TBC seconds
• Max speed (estimated): 205 mph (330 km/h)

Transmission
• Rear mid-mounted 'Sportshift™ llI' seven-speed automated manual transmission with electronic shift-by-wire control system
• Alloy torque tube with carbon fibre propeller shaft
• Limited-slip differential
• Final drive ratio 3.7:1

Wheels & tyres
• 19-inch, 10-spoke forged alloy, diamond-turned and Graphite-painted wheels
• Front wheel: 9J x 19"
• Rear wheel: 11J x 19"
• Front tyre: Pirelli P Zero Corsa 255 / 35 ZR19
• Rear tyre: Pirelli P Zero Corsa 295 / 30 ZR19
• Tyre repair kit

Dimensions
Length: 4385 mm (inc. front number plate plinth)
Kerbweight: TBC (estimate)
Width: 2022 mm (inc. mirrors)
Fuel tank capacity: 21.1 US gal (80 litres)
Height: 1250 mm
Wheelbase: 2600 mm

Steering
• Rack and pinion, power-assisted steering
• 2.6 turns lock-to-lock
• Column tilt and reach adjustment

Brakes
• Front: Ventilated carbon ceramic discs, 398 mm diameter with six-piston monobloc calipers
• Rear: Ventilated carbon ceramic discs, 360 mm diameter with four-piston monobloc calipers
• Black painted brake calipers
• Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) with track mode
• Anti-lock Braking System (ABS)
• Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD)
• Emergency Brake Assist (EBA)
• Traction control (TC)

Suspension
• Three Stage Adaptive Damping System (ADS) - Normal, Sport and Track modes
• Front: Independent double wishbones incorporating anti-dive geometry, coil springs, anti-roll bar and monotube dampers
• Rear: Independent double wishbones with anti-squat and anti-lift geometry, dual-rate coil springs and monotube dampers

Specification
• Full-grain leather interior
• Piano Black facia trim, centre stack and door pulls
• Alcantara-trimmed sports steering wheel with black airbag ring
• Electrically adjustable Sports seats with side airbags
• Memory seats and exterior mirrors (three positions)
• Dual-stage driver/passenger front airbags
• Carbon fibre front grille
• Titanium side strake mesh
• Powerfold exterior heated mirrors
• Heated rear screen
• Automatic temperature control
• Organic Electroluminescent (OEL) displays
• Trip computer
• Cruise control
• Bluetooth® telephone preparation
• Satellite navigation system
• Auto-dimming interior rear-view mirror with garage door opener
• Front & rear parking sensors
• Reversing camera
• Tyre-pressure monitoring
• Alarm (with volumetric and tilt sensor) and immobiliser
• Remote-control central door locking and boot release
• Glass ECU
• Glass switches
• LED map-reading lights
• 700W Aston Martin premium audio system with six-CD auto changer
• Satellite radio
• Integrated Apple iPod® connector1
• USB connector with Waveform Audio Format (WAF), Windows Media Player (WMA) and MPEG (MP3) audio file compatibility

1 iPod® is a trademark of Apple Inc., registered in the US and other countries.