Well well, Aston Martin have gone all old-fashioned.
The Brit luxury monster makers have introduced what they call a “third pedal” to supercar the Vantage AMR.
I must admit that I did a bit of a double-take when I read that, but then it dawned on me that it could only mean one thing.
That’s right, they’ve chucked away its super-swish auto box and replaced it with a proper manual gear change. Good.
Not only will it make the Vantage AMR an easier car to hammer around a race track but it also saves 95kg.
In their press release Aston say: “The Vantage AMR fulfils our promise to deliver a product with the involvement and driver engagement that only a manual can offer.” Hooray.
The firm has taken some of the fun out of driving a manual, though, because they add that the Vantage AMR: “Features AMSHIFT. The system, which is driver selectable, uses clutch, gear position and prop shaft sensors, together with a finely-tuned engine management programme, to mimic the technique of heel-and-toe downshifts.
“The act of blipping the throttle while braking and changing gear allows smoother deceleration and cornering as a result.”
That’s a shame, but it means you can still sound like Fangio’s driving the car without doing any of the hard work.
Powered by Aston Martin’s potent new alloy, 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8, set low and as far back in the chassis as possible for optimal centre-of-gravity and near perfect 50:50 weight distribution, this high performance, high efficiency engine develops 510hp and 625Nm (463lb) of torque from 2000-5000rpm. That results in 0-62mph in 4.0s and a top speed of 195 mph.
At £149,995 and limited to 200-units, the Vantage AMR is available in five designer specifications. Of those 200, the largest part, 141, will be available in either Sabiro Blue, Onyx Black, China Grey or White Stone (without a stripe).
In contrast, the final 59 will be made in celebration of the 60th anniversary since Aston Martin’s triumphant 1959 24 Hours Le Mans victory with DBR1.
Named “Vantage 59”, this fixed specification vehicle features a Stirling Green and Lime exterior paint scheme and Dark Knight leather and alcantara interior, finished with a signature AMR lime stripe and stitch.
That way you can sound like Juan Manuel Fangio and look like the Green Goddess all at the same time.