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Auto Show:  2012 Geneva Auto Show

Aston Martin V8 Vantage Preview: Geneva Auto Show


author photo by Tom Cassady February 2012
  • First major update since 2008
  • Many changes adapted from Vantage S
  • Features all-new seven-speed transmission


When Aston Martin announced that its Zagato concept was going to be released as a production car, it was obvious that the car was going to become Aston's star child for a while. While Aston could put its little Vantage on the back burner to focus on the Zagato, the sportier of Gaydon's two car brands didn't let that happen.

Set to debut at the Geneva Motor Show, the V8 Vantage will see a slew of updates for 2012. Prime among these changes is the engine and transmission setup. The engine comes directly from the N420 limited edition Vantage that came out in 2010. As the name suggests, the engine is capable of 420 horsepower. What the N420 couldn't take advantage of, though, is the new seven-speed Sportshift II automated manual. Aston Martin claims that the transmission not only gives the car an additional gear, but closer gear ratios, and shorter shifts, aiding in the acceleration and overall ride quality of the V8 Vantage.

Underneath the car is a set of larger and lighter brake discs, allowing for harder braking while giving the driver better pedal feel. Those brakes are tasked with stopping wider tires as well, with an additional ten millimeters of width on all corners.

In terms of styling, the new V8 Vantage benefits mostly from its bigger sibling, the Vantage S. The biggest change here is a lower front bumper that aids in keeping the brakes and the engine at a cool operating temperature. Meanwhile the rear bumper has a new integrated diffuser for cleaning up the aerodynamics of the air coming out from under the car.

What it means to you: While it seemed like all of Aston Martin's focus was going to go to the Zagato, it proved otherwise by updating the V8 Vantage's brakes, transmission, and looks.

This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
Aston Martin V8 Vantage Preview: Geneva Auto Show - Autotrader