Aston Martin V8 Vantage gets a performance advantage
Prodrive has launched a range of parts for the Aston Martin V8 Vantage, which improves the car’s performance and enhances its driving dynamics. The range includes: a performance pack for the engine; new driver-adjustable suspension; unique forged wheels; and a discreet aero package. Prodrive has tuned the 4.3 litre V8 engine to raise peak power from 283 kW (380 bhp) to 317 kW (425 bhp), as well as increasing peak torque from 410 Nm (302 lbft) to 440 Nm (325 lbft). This reduces the car’s 0-100 km/h time from 5.0 secs to 4.7 secs (est) and increases the top speed by 13 km/h to 293 km/h (est). A new throttle map, combined with the increase in torque, also make the engine more responsive throughout the rev range.
Prodrive has worked with suspension specialists, Bilstein and Eibach, to develop new driver-adjustable suspension. A switch in the cockpit allows the driver to choose between normal and sports mode. The normal mode has been designed to enhance the V8 Vantage’s existing ride and handling characteristics, while the firmer sports mode delivers an even more focussed driving experience on the road or for track use.
The engine performance pack has a modified exhaust system with a low back pressure sports catalyst and a driver-controlled switch to manually override the V8 Vantage’s exhaust valve. This gives the option of a quiet mode, where the valve is permanently closed; auto, where the valve operates as it does on the standard car; and sport mode, where the valve is permanently open (where conditions allow).
The V8 Vantage’s aerodynamics have been analysed in the windtunnel to develop an aero package to reduce high speed lift. The result is discreet Prodrive designed and manufactured carbon composite front lip and trunk spoilers, which are in keeping with the Vantage’s classic styling. Together, these reduce lift by 45 per cent, improving both high speed stability and grip.
Prodrive runs the Aston Martin Racing team in partnership with Aston Martin. It has used its experience of designing and developing DB9 and V8 Vantage-based race and rally cars to help create this range of performance enhancements for the road car. It has also carried through the unique design of the wheels used on the Aston Martin DBR9 GT1 racing car to special 14 spoke 19” forged wheels made by Prodrive Japan for the V8 Vantage. These come complete with Pirelli P-Zero tyres, which have been selected to match the new suspension and optimise the ride and handling.
“The V8 Vantage is already one of the world’s best sports cars,” said Roland Cherry, Prodrive performance products director. “Our aim was to develop a range of parts which enhanced the car’s performance but, most importantly, did not compromise the inherent Aston Martin driving characteristics or styling. I think we have achieved this with a range of parts owners can specify as a package or individually.”
The range of parts and prices will be available from early 2007.
Suspension partner, Eibach, has an Aston Martin V8 Vantage with the full range of parts fitted on display on its stand at the Essen Motor Show.