Launched at the Birmingham Motor Show in 1992, this was the second model to be given the name Vantage in its own right, rather than just an uprated version of the standard offering. For the first time in its history, Aston Martin had the resources of a major motor manufacturer at its disposal, with Ford having bought into the company in 1987. This paid dividends in the development of the Vantage.
Vantage in Detail
While Vantage did bear a passing resemblance to Virage, closer examination would reveal many differences. The most obvious were external details, the only Virage panels being the door and roof skins. The frontal aspect had two groups of three headlamps, each behind a heated lens, a deep front chin spoiler with three vents, larger pronounced flared wheel arches and two mesh filled air vents in the panel behind the front wheels giving the car a formidable appearance.
Reaction to the Vantage was predictably enthusiastic, and it generated rave reviews for the company.
The Ultimate Vantage Le Mans
In 1999 Aston Martin launched the ultimate Vantage, named Vantage Le Mans, in celebration of the company's victory at Le Mans in 1959. Only 40 cars were built with a massive 600 bhp and 600 lb-ft of torque, the highest output of any Aston Martin and, indeed, any production car at the time.
Visible modifications included a restyled bonnet with twin air intakes, a distinctive blanked off radiator grille, larger side vents and magnesium alloy wheels. The brakes were up rated to 6 piston AP Racing discs and calipers. The interior wood was replaced with brushed metal panels and larger, racing style rev counter.
Twin-OHC V8 (Supercharged), 5430 cc, 550 bhp @ 6500 rpm 550 lbs-ft @ 4000 rpm
Ventilated steel discs
0 – 60 mph:
6-speed ZF manual
4745 x 1924 x 1330 mm