The Aston Martin Vulcan we already know, though not as well as we might like to. It's a track-bound supercar along the lines of the Ferrari FXX K or McLaren P1 GTR. But instead of a hybrid powertrain mounted amidships, it's got a naturally aspirated 7.0-liter V12 up front and kicking out over 800 horsepower. Unfortunately only 24 of them will be made, so even if you venture down to your local circuit for a track day, you're still not very likely to see one up close.
Even rarer, though, is the Avro Vulcan. Part of the Royal Air Force armory from 1956 to 1984, the Vulcan was a giant delta-wing bomber that measured around 100 feet long (depending on the version) with a wingspan just as wide. Of the 136 that were made, only one – Vulcan XH558 – remains in operation, courtesy not of any national military but of the Vulcan To The Sky charitable trust. But it's about to be put to pasture as the centerpiece of the Vulcan Aviation Academy & Heritage Centre at Robin Hood Airport (seriously) near Doncaster in South Yorkshire, England.
Before Vulcan XH558 is retired, though, it's set to make one final flight. And in preparation for that historic event, it made a pass by Elvington Airfield for a brief – if distant – encounter with its namesake. The feat was pulled off purely for the photo op, so whether you're more into the car or the plane, you might as well check out the results in the gallery above and the brief video clip below.
02 October 2015, Gaydon: As the last remaining airworthy Avro Vulcan prepares for its final flight later this month, the iconic 1950s British V bomber has been united with its modern namesake: the Aston Martin Vulcan.
Vulcan XH558 – currently being operated by the charitable trust Vulcan To The Sky – is due to retire from 'active service' in October, going on to form the centrepiece of the educational Vulcan Aviation Academy & Heritage Centre at her home base, Robin Hood Airport near Doncaster.
Ahead of that final flight, the famous Cold War-era long range bomber was paired with the Aston Martin Vulcan – the new track-only supercar – via a special fly-past at Elvington Airfield in Yorkshire.
The British luxury car maker's most intense and exhilarating creation to date the Aston Martin Vulcan is born out of extensive motorsport experience. Using the brand's acknowledged flair for design and engineering ingenuity, the 800-plus bhp, all-carbon fibre Aston Martin Vulcan delivers truly extreme performance.
Uniquely for Aston Martin the new supercar – limited to just 24 examples worldwide – allows owners the opportunity to precisely tailor their track day experience through a graduating scale of detailed power and dynamic performance adjustments.
CEO, Dr Andy Palmer, said: "Clearly the Avro Vulcan provided the inspiration for the naming of our most extreme sports car, and I'm delighted that we have been able to unite the 'two Vulcans' and deliver our own tribute to this world-renowned aeronautical phenomenon."
Vulcan XH558 is flown by Martin Withers DFC, Chief Pilot and Operations Director. He said: "Being at the controls for this unique fly-past was a memorable occasion.
"Personally, it is great to know that the Vulcan name will live on not only in the history books, and at the new educational centre in Yorkshire, but via Aston Martin's incredible new sports car."
More details of Vulcan XH558 and its final month of operation are available via the Trust's website at http://www.vulcantothesky.org/
First deliveries of the track-only Aston Martin Vulcan to customers worldwide will take place before the end of 2015.