In August, spy photographers at the Nurburgring took pics of an Aston Martin Vantage mule doing hard laps. The primer black test car sported an extra wide body, a big ol’ V-shaped mesh net on its hood likely hiding heat extractors, an enormous grille with extra intakes along the sides, and dual pipes jutting out the center of the rear diffuser. It looked like Aston Martin had put its 5.2-liter V12 into a Vantage engine bay, and reports from ears on the ground said it sounded that way, too. Remember, last year’s Aston Martin Speedster was based on the Vantage chassis and was powered by that 5.2-liter V12, an engine not available in the series production Vantage.
In the Speedster, that engine produced 690 horsepower and 555 pound-feet of torque. The Supercar Blog reports that its sources say a reborn V12 Vantage might have its engine restricted to 670 hp. That seems a logical number, possibly putting the V12 Vantage a notable step down from the 715-hp DBS and the 690-hp special edition Speedster. If it does get 670 hp, that figure would put it 40 ponies ahead of the DB11 with the same V12, but TSB reports the V12 Vantage will be a limited edition. Expected to arrive for the 2023 model year as part of the standard Vantage’s model update, sources say there will only be 299 made.
The last time Aston Martin put its biggest engine in its smallest car, the result was arguably the best and most enjoyable car in the automaker’s range. We have the same expectation this time around. Unlike the last time, though, there won’t be a manual transmission on the menu; it’s said the updated Vantage will go with the eight-speed automatic only. Now that the Vantage F1 Edition starts at over $160,000, a V12 Vantage could start beyond $190,000 and even creep over $200,000.
Company CEO Tobias Moers has said he plans 10 derivatives of existing models by 2023, so it seems likely that this won’t be the only special edition Vantage on the way.