Aston Martin GT8 is lightest and most powerful V8 Vantage ever

Unveiled today, the GT8 gives the Vantage V8 the Le Mans treatment.

Aston Martin has revealed the upcoming GT8 variant, a race-inspired limited edition much like the earlier GT12. Only 150 will be built – 50 more than the 12-cylinder sibling. And like the GT12, none of those will be coming to North America, either.

The car has already been offered to select customers, with a sketch depicting the car but without finalized photos, as the manufacturer wanted to keep the car under wraps until the unveiling.

As the GT12 uses the six-liter V12 engine, the GT8 is based on the Vantage V8 and uses a 4.7-liter powerplant with 446 horsepower, a slight hike from the regular car's output. The bodywork has been made out of carbon fiber, granting it the title of being the lightest and most powerful V8 Vantage built. According to Aston Martin, all the bodywork is race-bred and not just there for show. Aston's Director of Special Projects and Motorsport, David King says that Aston Martin has "long desired to create a road car that truly reflects our racing activity at Le Mans", and that the GT8 achieves that.

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Regarding the choice of transmission, the GT8 follows in the footsteps of the GT12 – either a six-speed manual or the seven-speed Sportshift II paddle-shift, whichever seems to suit the buyer of the motorsport-themed car. The buyer can also decide on optional weight saving measures, as the roof is also available in carbon fiber and the side and rear windows in polycarbonate. Still, there are A/C and audio systems to make the limited edition car a little more bearable than its racing counterparts.

There are three optional "Halo" paint schemes to choose from, combining China Grey with blue, Stratus White with green and Stirling Green with lime detailing, the last of which is seen in these press images. Prices start from £165,000 ($233,880) and deliveries commence in late 2016.

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