2014 Aston Martin Vanquish Volante

---- Specifications ----
Price $297,995 Production --
Engine 6 liter V12 Weight 4065 lbs
Aspiration naturals Torque 457 lb-ft @ 5500 rpm
HP 565 hp @ 6750 rpm HP/Weight 7.2 lbs per hp
HP/Liter 94.2 hp per liter 1/4 mile --
0-62 mph 4.1 seconds Top Speed 183 mph

(from Aston Martin Press Release) ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH VOLANTE: THE ULTIMATE CONVERTIBLE SUPER GT

  • The first Volante to feature a full carbon fibre body
  • 6.0-litre V12 engine produces 573 PS; 0-62 mph in 4.1 seconds (estimated)
  • Multi-layer lightweight fabric roof folds in 14 seconds

Aston Martin today unveils the Vanquish Volante – a stunning new luxury sports car that brings the thrill of open top motoring to the super GT class.

Alongside its coupe sibling, launched to worldwide acclaim last autumn, the Vanquish Volante sits at the pinnacle of the luxury British car maker’s sports car line-up.

Benefitting from all of the technical, engineering and design advances present in the Vanquish coupe, the new Volante enhances the driving experience still further through the option of exciting convertible driving.

Instantly becoming one of the most beautiful cars in its class, Vanquish Volante crucially retains the coupe’s dynamic character and sporting capability. It boasts the same new AM11 6.0-litre V12 engine as the coupe and the same blistering performance figures, meaning the 0-62 mph sprint is despatched in just 4.1 seconds (estimated) while the top speed stands at 183 mph.

Vanquish Volante is the first fully carbon fibre-skinned Volante in the brand’s 100-year history, while also being the stiffest Volante body structure yet created by the engineering team at Aston Martin’s global HQ in Gaydon, Warwickshire, England. The new car’s triple-skin lightweight fabric roof takes just 14 seconds to fold.

Announcing the arrival of the Vanquish Volante Aston Martin CEO Dr Ulrich Bez said: “This car is what luxury super GT driving is all about. Great performance, fantastic style and exhilarating Volante motoring in one superb package.

“Aston Martin is celebrating 100 years of excellence in 2013, and the arrival of this new sports car – our ultimate Volante – underlines that our mission to make the next 100 years even more successful is starting perfectly.”

The design of Vanquish Volante represents the latest take on Aston Martin’s iconic visual language. Styling cues such as the elegant waist, elongated side strakes and LED rear light blades are derived from the One-77 supercar while the folding fabric roof sits beneath a tonneau and decklid that have been aerodynamically tuned for optimum performance.

The windscreen, meanwhile, is now full height – a first for Aston Martin – which means that the glass runs up to meet the fabric roof, thereby achieving a particularly clean transition.

The Vanquish Volante’s ‘suit’ of carbon fibre panels cloaks a cabin that is both sophisticated and comfortable. The 2+2 cabin is elegantly attired in authentic and luxurious materials: full grain Luxmil leather with optional quilting, metal controls and satin chrome trim underscore the car’s well-appointed nature.

Each body panel on the car is constructed from carbon fibre not just because of its high strength-to-weight ratio, but also for its flexibility of form. This not only reduces mass but means that fewer individual body panels are required – reducing joints and contributing to a more coherent and svelte shape.

As practical as it is well-dressed, the Vanquish Volante boasts a boot that’s fully 50% larger than that of the previous DBS Volante. It measures 279 litres – roof up or down – and makes the new Aston Martin the perfect choice for continent-crossing grand tours as well as daily drives.

Perhaps one of the most striking interior design elements is the centre stack with refinements providing a more elegant form that is also more intuitive and accessible for both driver and front seat passenger.

A direct descendent of the One-77 centre stack, the Vanquish and Vanquish Volante’s set-up retains familiar elements such as the ECU engine start button and glass gear selection buttons while featuring a new infotainment system and a significantly more user-friendly design.

The facia trim now stretches down the whole centre stack and is manufactured from a single piece of material giving a uniform finish.

The user interface boasts a simple, ergonomically efficient layout as well as technological updates that make it the brand’s most advanced in-car system available today.

Capacitive glass buttons with illumination and haptic feedback feature in the rest of the centre stack’s switchgear. Haptic feedback is more commonly found in touch-screen mobile phones and Aston Martin was among the first significant luxury car manufacturers in the world to use the technology in a series production model when it debuted on Vanquish coupe in 2012.

Aston Martin Design Director Marek Reichman explained: “Vanquish Volante is a sports car, of course, but more even than that it is the ultimate Volante. A car which follows a long line of elegant Aston Martin convertibles, this super GT is sculpted to convey sophistication as much as raw power.

“The aerodynamically shaped tonneau, the proportions of the folding fabric roof, the luxurious nature of the cabin – these elements have been pored over by the Design team, working with our Engineering colleagues, to ensure we deliver the aesthetic appeal for which Aston Martin is renowned around the world.”

Under its curvaceous carbon fibre bonnet the Vanquish Volante comprises the latest generation AM11 naturally aspirated 6.0-litre V12 petrol engine which drives the rear wheels via a Touchtronic 2 six-speed automatic gearbox.

The V12’s power peak of 573 PS (565 bhp) arrives at 6,750 rpm while the torque peak of 620 Nm (457 lb ft) is available at 5,500 rpm. These numbers translate into performance that matches the Vanquish coupe’s and ensures the new car supports its Super GT billing.

The dynamics have been tuned precisely, with new springs and damper settings calibrated to deliver the same crisp handling yet compliant ride as the coupe.

Strenuous efforts have been made to limit the new car’s weight; contributing to its impressive performance, agile handling and compelling power-to-weight ratio. The combination of controlled weight, near-perfect 51:49 weight distribution, a powerful V12 engine and a performance-honed six-speed transmission unite to make the Vanquish Volante as rewarding on the move as it is beautiful standing still.

Like its coupe counterpart, the Vanquish Volante uses the latest generation of Aston Martin’s class-leading VH (Vertical Horizontal) architecture, a lightweight bonded aluminium structure that provides outstanding strength and rigidity. In this iteration, the Vanquish now includes the addition of significant semi-structural carbon fibre components, as well as the use of bonding derived directly from the latest aerospace technologies.

As well as being light, strong and flexible in its application, the gen4 VH architecture is also extremely rigid. The new Vanquish Volante is, in fact, 14% torsionally stiffer than the DBS Volante which preceded it, making it highly resistant to flex and allowing for responsive and predictable handling.

This rigid structure also provides an ideal foundation from which the suspension can control the vehicle effectively, further highlighting the importance of the body structure and the effect it has on the dynamic performance of the car.

Aston Martin’s engineering teams have worked particularly hard to minimise the weight outside the wheelbase of the new car to reduce yaw inertia. As a result, carbon fibre has been used extensively in the rear structure and the weight of the aluminium front structure has been limited.

To take full advantage of its precise and rigid architecture, the Vanquish Volante employs a battery of sophisticated technologies including Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) and Positive Torque Control (PTC).

Aston Martin’s Adaptive Damping System (ADS) allows the driver to switch between three distinct damping modes: Normal, Sport and Track, delivering instant adjustment of the car’s ride and handling characteristics.

The ADS automatically alters the suspension settings to ensure the driver has high levels of control at all times, with the ability to respond quickly to different driving conditions. The different damping modes available help significantly broaden the Vanquish Volante’s character, adapting its set-up to suit the driver’s mood and requirements. Thus it can be a cruising GT car in Normal mode with the capacity to morph into an assertive sports car in Sport and Track modes.

The damper settings are determined by an electronic control unit which takes sensor readings from the car’s systems including throttle position, brake position, steering wheel rotation and vehicle speed. This data establishes the prevailing driving conditions and the demands the driver is making on the car.

Steering, too, is crisp, precise and communicative. The rack’s quick 15:1 ratio – 2.6 turns lock-to-lock – is allied to speed-sensitive power assistance that’s tuned to deliver optimum assistance.

The car’s braking system features third generation Brembo Carbon Ceramic Matrix (CCM) parts to deliver shorter stopping distances with resistance to fade in even the most demanding driving conditions. CCM brakes are also lighter than a conventional system, reducing the weight of the car overall and, in particular, the unsprung weight and rotational masses, further enhancing the performance of the suspension.

The front brakes use 398 mm x 36 mm CCM discs with larger front pads and six-piston callipers from the One-77, while the rear brakes use 360 mm x 32 mm CCM discs with four-piston callipers.

Aston Martin CEO Dr Ulrich Bez added: “Vanquish Volante, like the Vanquish coupe before it, uses the very latest technologies employed in the very best ways to create a sports car which is easy to control, and to enjoy dynamic performance at the finest level.

“This is not simply a great-looking car – this is a great car engineered and crafted for the connoisseur by people dedicated to delivering exceptional sports cars with clearly defined characters.”

Priced from £199,995 RRP in the UK; €264,995 RRP in Germany; $297,995 MSRP in the United States and $323,974 RRP in Dubai, first deliveries of the new sports car are expected to begin in the UK and Continental Europe late in 2013.

Aston Martin Vanquish Volante Specifications

Body

Two-door Volante style with 2+2 seating
New generation bonded aluminium and carbon fibre VH structure
Aluminium, magnesium alloy and carbon-fibre composite body
Extruded aluminium door side-impact beams
Single bi-xenon headlamps with LED sidelights
LED light blade rear lamps and LED side repeaters

Engine

All-alloy, independent quad variable camshaft timing, 48-valve, 5,935 cc V12
Compression ratio 11.0:1
Front-mid mounted engine, rear-wheel drive
Fully catalysed stainless steel exhaust system with active bypass valves
Six three-way catalytic convertors
Max power: 573 PS (565 bhp) at 6,750 rpm
Max torque: 620 Nm (457 lb ft) at 5,500 rpm
Acceleration: 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) in 4.1 seconds (estimated)
Max speed: 295 km/h (183 mph)

Transmission

Rear-mid mounted, six-speed Touchtronic 2 automatic/sequential manual gearbox
Alloy torque tube with carbon fibre propeller shaft
Limited-slip differential

Wheels and Tyres

Front: 9J x 20’’ Pirelli P Zero 255/35 ZR20
Rear: 11.5J x 20’’ Pirelli P Zero 305/30 ZR20

Steering

Speed-dependent electronically controlled rack and pinion power-assisted steering, 2.6 turns lock-to-lock. Column tilt and reach adjustment

Suspension

Lightweight aluminium front subframe with hollow castings
Front: Independent double wishbone incorporating anti-dive geometry, coil springs, anti-roll bar and monotube adaptive dampers
Rear: Independent double wishbones with anti-squat and anti-lift geometry, coil springs, anti-roll bar and monotube adaptive dampers
Three-stage adjustable Adaptive Damping System (ADS) with Normal, Sport and Track modes

Brakes

Front: Ventilated carbon ceramic discs, 398mm diameter with six-piston calipers
Rear: Ventilated carbon ceramic discs, 360mm diameter with four-piston calipers
Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) with Track mode
Anti-lock Braking System (ABS)
Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD)
Emergency Brake Assist (EBA)
Hydraulic Brake Assist (HBA)
Positive Torque Control (PTC)
Traction Control
Launch Control

Standard specification

Full-grain Luxmil leather interior
Alcantara headlining
Electrically operated front seats with side airbags
Memory front seats and exterior mirrors (three memory positions)
2+2 seating configuration with flexible rear environment storage
Powerfold exterior heated mirrors
Front and rear parking sensors
Cruise control
Tyre pressure monitoring
Alarm and immobiliser
Remote-control central door locking and boot release
Automatic temperature control
Heated front seats
Curtain side head airbags
Dual Stage Driver and Passenger Front Airbags
Pelvis and thorax seat-mounted airbags
Seat belt dual-pretensioners and digressive load limiters
Trip computer
Tracking device (UK only)
Laminated windscreen with clear noise-insulation layer
Glass key
Heated rear glass screen
Bright aluminium front grille
Chrome side strakes and tailpipe trim

In-car entertainment

Infotainment system with capacitive switching
1000W Bang & Olufsen BeoSound 15-speaker audio system
Garmin satellite navigation system*+
6.5” LCD Screen
iPod® and iPhone® Integration and USB playback
Satellite radio system (USA only)
DAB/AM/FM radio1
A2DP Bluetooth® audio and phone streaming
Wi-Fi Hub5

Options

10-spoke alloy wheel in a Graphite finish
20-spoke alloy wheel in a Liquid Silver, Silver finish with diamond-turning, Graphite finish with diamond-turning, Gloss Black with diamond turning and Satin Black with diamond-turning finish.
Black vaned grille
Magnum Silver or Black mesh finish
Black textured tailpipe
Black, blue, yellow and red brake calipers
Exposed carbon fibre side strakes
Exposed carbon fibre door handles
Protective film
Colour-keyed Luxmil leather steering wheel
Colour-keyed One-77 leather steering wheel with Obsidian Black leather inserts
Centre-stack facia in carbon fibre 2x2 twill & Piano Black (Herringbone Carbon Fibre, Piano Red and Piano Ice Mocha).
Headrest embroidery – AM Wings
Black hardware pack
Full carbon fibre gearshift paddles
Shadow bronze jewellery pack
Personalised sill plaques
Rear parking assist camera
Auto-dimming mirror with garage door opener
Heated and ventilated seats
Perforated leather door inserts
Smokers’ pack
Second glass key
Aston Martin tracking by Cobra 13
Alarm upgrade (Volumetric and tilt sensors)
Toolkit
6CD auto-changer
First-aid kit

*+ Includes Traffic Messaging Channel (TMC) in Continental Europe
** Complies with UK Thatcham Category 5 requirements. Excludes subscription. Standard in UK
1 Not available in all markets
2 iPod® is a trademark of Apple Inc., registered in the US and other countries