11 Oct 2016 Aston Martin Vanquish Volante
The Last Aston Martin of its Kind
Regulations hit all car manufacturers, even small British ones like Aston Martin. A company that is known for building big naturally aspirated V12 engines for decades. This is the last time we get to drive a current, naturally aspirated Aston Martin, and we chose the top of the line Aston Martin Vanquish Volante for that.
When I first fired up the Aston Martin Vanquish Volante, it immediately felt like a very special experience. I mean, already just sitting in the car feels very special of course, but once you fire up that 6-liter V12 engine, especially when it’s cold, you forget everything else. This sound is just something that has been rare in the past but is gotten rarer by the day. Then you use these cool buttons for the automatic, to put the car into the right drive mode and off you go.
Driving through my countryside neighborhood, I was surprised by how quiet the car actually is, even when you’re in the designated SPORT mode. The car has an active exhaust flap in the exhaust, which is a bit annoying to people who want to fully enjoy the sound of the V12 at any speed, but very valuable for the ones who are real gentlemen. I assume you know to which group I belong ;). After driving a bit, I kind of figured out how the exhaust flap works, and what I have to do to get it to open. Surprisingly, wide open throttle will not open it below around 4,000 rpm. In fact, you get the best sound with about half to three-quarter throttle, around 3-5k rpm. Once you figured that out, you can really enjoy this car. I wish that there was a way, that they include an exhaust button that will just keep the exhaust flap open at all times. I assume, however, that Aston Martin doesn’t trust their customers to fully understand the different modes, and want it as simple as possible, so the computer overrides the manual selection of the loud exhaust to protect Aston Martin from their customers.
Acceleration wise, the car is quick enough to have some fun in it, but it definitely dies down quickly at higher speeds. It takes very long to reach 300 km/h (187 mph) in this car, even it has 570 HP. You can watch my Autobahn Video below and judge for yourself. But then again, which gentleman would ever need to go faster than 160 km/h (100 mph). I don’t think we even saw James Bond ever go faster than that.
The interior of the car feels very expensive. They used extremely nice leather and lots of beautiful aluminum. The infotainment and navigation system has been improved over the years, but it still lacks a lot of sophistication compared to other manufacturers. But again, it works. Gentlemen would use actual, physical maps anyways, so who cares.
Overall, I definitely enjoyed driving the Aston Martin Vanquish Volante and definitely can understand why people buy this car. It’s not a car for me just yet, but when I am older, wiser, and have other preferences than going fast, I would consider buying an Aston Martin, especially if it still comes with a V12 engine.
But then again, which gentleman would ever need to go faster than 160 km/h (100 mph). I don't think we ever saw James Bond go faster than that.
Article by Kai Groschupf