Aston Martin is embarking on a brave new future. After thirteen years basing the bulk of its lineup on the VH architecture, Aston is developing a new platform, and is partnering with Mercedes-AMG to develop a new V8 engine and electronic systems. But what will happen to the old platform and engines once the new ones arrive?

You might think that they'd be retired, but that won't necessarily be the case. At least as far as the AM11 V12 engine goes. The 6.0-liter engine was developed by Cosworth, based on a Ford block, and first appeared on the DB7 Vantage way back in 1999, but still powers everything Aston offers, save the V8 Vantage. It's evolved heavily over the past decade and a half, rising in output from 420 horsepower to 565, but Aston is one of the only British automakers still offering a V12 these days (Jaguar no longer does, Bentley's is actually a W12 and while Rolls-Royce does, its vehicles are mostly of a decidedly more sedate nature), and will surely want to carry on that legacy.

That's why Aston spokesman Matthew Clarke revealed in correspondence with Autoblog, "Our 6.0-liter V12 engine will remain, with ongoing development, at the heart of a number of our flagship models for the foreseeable future," long after the new engine being developed with Mercedes arrives. Just which models will receive the new eight-cylinder engine and which will keep the twelve remains to be seen, but we get the feeling Aston's eight-cylinder range will broaden to include more than just the Vantage.

As for the VH architecture, you can expect it to sail off into the proverbial sunset once the new platform is ready, though we wouldn't be surprised to see it phased out more gradually than abruptly. A 13-year tradition doesn't end overnight, after all.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 10 Comments
      JaredN
      • 7 Months Ago
      One day I'd like to own a car with a V12, just because.
      imag
      • 7 Months Ago
      Great news. They have gotten that V12 up to 750 horsepower, which is plenty. And it sounds ridiculously good.
      David
      • 7 Months Ago
      David E. Davis stated at one time that everyone should own a V12 at least once in their lifetime. His statement remains correct yet today in spite of fuel economy concerns. Jaguar needs to get back into this segment the sooner the better. I have owned V12 Jaguar's going back to the E-Type and there is nothing else like it save for maybe the V16 which I have yet to experience. Several years back Cadillac did offer hopes for such a beast with the Phaeton show car in Detroit. Hooray for AM; and Jaguar come on back.
      Teleny411
      • 7 Months Ago
      Hip hip hooray!!! The Aston V12 Is here to stay!!!
      Bernard
      • 7 Months Ago
      The V12's will sound nicer, but the AMG V8's will accelerate faster.
        KaiserWilhelm
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Bernard
        You don't know that for sure. We have no idea what those engines will be, they could be totally bespoke like the Pagani motors.
          Bernard
          • 7 Months Ago
          @KaiserWilhelm
          Have you heard an Aston Martin V12? There is no way a turbo V8 is going to sound better. Even the best N/A V8 is going to have a hard time sounding as wonderful as an Aston Martin V12. As for acceleration, given the power of the current AMG V8's I'm not expecting them to be less powerful in the Aston Martin.
      bonehead
      • 7 Months Ago
      Honestly i wonder if Aston Martin could increase its market share by being THE only company still selling V12 engines. Imagine if every Aston Martin was a v12 of varying hp. They would have a cachet that other car companies do not. They could make smaller V12s for the lesser models and just charge out the wazoo for all of them because hey V12 and the world now knows that all Aston are V12. I think it would work and make Aston more desirable and exotic. They would likely sell less cars but with higher margins. Ferrari was successful with this recently.
      XT6Wagon
      • 7 Months Ago
      Shame they never got Ford to make them a new V12 based on the ecoboost V6 with the direct injection heads. Would make for a wonderful non-turbo engine in most of the cars. Also make for a very powerful twin turbo V12 in a flagship model.