Aston Martin brought its most potent sports car to North America in 2011 with the two-seat V12 Vantage, a 510-horsepower version of its low-slung two-seater that tops the V8 Vantage by 90 hp. While the V8 Vantage is available as a hardtop coupe or convertible with a choice of automatic or manual transmissions, the V-12 version is coupe and manual transmission only. The V8 Vantage is covered in a separate report in the Cars.com Research section. Competitors include the Audi R8 5.2 and Porsche 911 Turbo.
A Carbon Black special edition has unique metallic paint created by hand, carbon fiber side strakes, black 10-spoke wheels, black leather upholstery and black interior trim.
New for 2012
A Garmin-based navigation system is newly available, and the brake calipers can be optionally painted red, gray or yellow.
The V12 Vantage's frame replaces welding with advanced adhesives for better vibration damping, and aluminum and magnesium components reduce weight throughout the chassis. Exterior features include:
- High-intensity-discharge headlights
- Flared front fenders are trailed by inset side vents
- Integrated deck lid spoiler and twin exhaust pipes
- 19-inch wheels
- LED taillights
- Rear parking sensors
A dizzying array of interior choices means each V12 Vantage can be personalized by its buyer. Premium materials line the aluminum-trimmed dashboard, which includes a ringed push-button ignition above the radio controls. Interior features include:
- 10-way power seats feature twin lumbar adjustment and memory function
- Optional heated seats
- Standard Bluetooth connectivity
- Automatic climate control
- Analog clock, stitched dashboard seams and machined instrument dials are among the upscale touches
Under the Hood
The 6.0-liter V-12 engine makes 510 hp in the rear-drive V12 Vantage. The engine has Normal and Sport modes engaged by a button, and Sport delivers sharper throttle response and a sportier exhaust note. Mechanical features include:
- Rear-mounted six-speed manual transmission
- Carbon-ceramic brakes
- Zero to 60 mph in 4.1 seconds
- Top speed of 190 mph
Safety features include:
- Antilock brakes
- Electronic brake-force distribution
- Brake assist
- Traction control
- Electronic stability system
- Side-impact airbags; seats incorporate head-protection airbags
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