LA Launch of Aston Martin V8 Vantage Roadster

Visitors to the 2006 Los Angeles Auto Show on Wednesday 29th November will be privileged to witness the unveiling of the Aston Martin V8 Vantage Roadster. This new model joins the current range of Vanquish S, DB9 and V8 Vantage Coupe, and will be built at Aston Martin’s global headquarters at Gaydon, near Warwickshire.

According to Aston Martin, the Vantage Roadster represents “the open sports car in its purest form”. Certainly, the low purposeful stance, elegant lines and hand-trimmed interior achieve that desired combination of traditional craftsmanship and 21st Century style. The car boasts exclusivity from its hand-stitched leather seats to its hand-finished body; plus – of course – it’s powered by the fabulous quad overhead camshaft, 32-valve, 4.3-litre V8 engine with its variable inlet camshaft timing and dry-sump lubrication.

Even in convertible form, you can still see the clever design of the Vantage Coupe shine through. The Roadster’s three-layer fabric hood supplies the taut, aggressive appearance when closed and, when open, the design flows uninterrupted from front to rear, enhanced by the leather ‘speed humps’ connecting interior and exterior. The hood can be opened or closed in just 18 seconds by pressing the button on the centre console, and the mechanism will function at speeds of up to 30mph with no manual intervention.

At just 4.38 metres long, the Vantage Roadster remains not only the smallest model in the Aston Martin range but also one of the leanest cars in its class. Driver and passenger sit low, the better to feel the car reacting to driver input in a way usually confined to racing cars. The performance, too, will thrill the sporty driver, with only a minimal weight increase over the Coupe to preserve the model’s agility and response. Careful development and engineering ensure that the Roadster equals the achievements of its Coupe sibling, with 0-62mph in 5.0 seconds and a top speed of 175mph.

LA Launch of  Aston Martin V8 Vantage Roadster LA Launch of  Aston Martin V8 Vantage Roadster

Buyers will have the choice of a six-speed Graziano manual gearbox or Aston Martin's new Sportshift paddleshift semi-automatic transmission. Deliveries of the V8 Vantage Roadster are anticipated in the spring, with prices to be confirmed nearer the time.

Aston Martin V8 Vantage Roadster Specification

Two-seat, two-door body with soft cover convertible top and heated glass rear screen. Bonded aluminium structure. Aluminium alloy, steel, composite, and magnesium alloy body. Extruded aluminium side impact bars and integral rollover bars. Halogen projector headlamps. LED rear lamps.

Aston Martin all-alloy quad overhead camshaft 32 valve, 4.3 litre V8. Variable inlet camshaft timing. Dry sump lubrication system. Fully catalysed stainless steel exhaust system with active bypass valves. Front mid-mounted engine. Rear-wheel drive.

Rear mid-mounted six-speed manual with optional Sportshift automated manual transmission. Alloy torque tube with carbon-fibre propeller shaft. Limited slip differential. Final drive ratio 3.909:1.

Rack and pinion power-assisted steering, 3.0 turns lock to lock. Column reach and tilt adjust.

Wheels and Tyres
Standard: 18 inch alloy wheels – 10-spoke design – Front: 8.5J x 18 inch / Rear: 9.5J x 18 inch. Bridgestone Potenza tyres – Front: 235/45 ZR18. Rear: 275/40 ZR18.

Optional: 19 inch alloy wheels – seven-spoke design – Front: 8.5J x 19 inch / Rear: 9.5J x 19 inch. Bridgestone Potenza tyres – Front: 235/40 ZR19. Rear: 275/35 ZR19.

Optional: Pirelli P-Zero Corsa sports tyres – Front: 245/40 ZR19. Rear: 285/35 ZR19

Front: Independent double aluminium wishbones incorporating anti-dive geometry, coil over aluminium monotube dampers and anti-roll bar.
Rear: Independent double aluminium wishbones incorporating longitudinal control arms, coil over aluminium monotube dampers and anti-roll bar.

Radial-mounted four-piston monobloc callipers. Dynamic Stability Control (DSC). Traction Control. Anti-lock Braking System (ABS). Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD). Emergency Brake Assist (EBA). Positive Torque Control.

Front: Ventilated and grooved steel discs – 355mm diameter
Rear: Ventilated and grooved steel discs – 330mm diameter

Full grain leather interior. Gunmetal facia. Graphite interior fittings. Electrically adjustable seats. Automatic temperature control. Heated rear screen. Reversing sensors. Battery Disconnect Switch (BDS). Trip computer. Dual stage driver and passenger airbags. Side airbags. Alarm and immobiliser. Tyre pressure monitoring.

In-Car Entertainment
160W Aston Martin Audio System with six CD autochanger.

Sportshift automated manual transmission. Xenon (HID) headlamps including power wash. Bright finish grille. Piano Black facia trim. Alternative brake calliper finish (black, red, silver). Heated seats. Cruise control. Passenger seat height adjustment*1. Memory seats (3 positions). Battery conditioner. Powerfold exterior mirrors. Auto dimming interior rear view mirror*1. Auto dimming interior rear view mirror with garage door opener*1. Voice activated Bluetooth telephone preparation*1. Integrated GSM telephone*1. Satellite navigation system with optional Traffic Messaging Channel (TMC)*1. Tracking device*1/2. Alarm upgrade (volumetric & tilt sensors). Smokers pack. Sports tyres. 19 inch alloy wheels – seven-spoke design, with silver finish. 19 inch alloy wheels – seven-spoke design, with anthracite finish. Front wheel stone guards. Personalised sill plaques. First aid kit*1. Umbrella & holder. 700W Aston Martin Premium Audio System with Dolby Pro Logic II. Wind deflector.

Text - Charis Whitcombe
Photos - Aston Martin

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