The present generation of the Aston Martin Vantage has been around since 2018, so it's time for the car to be updated and facelifted for 2024. The good news is that, beyond the front-end reskinning, the Vantage has a far nicer-looking and classier interior, as well as a serious hike in power from its twin-turbocharged V8 engine.
Massive power increase
The Vantage still uses the 4.0-litre biturbo V8 which Aston Martin sources from a tie-up with Mercedes-AMG, and previously it made robust outputs of 510hp and 685Nm - good enough for a 0-100km/h time of 3.6 seconds and a top speed of 314km/h.
The facelifted Vantage now delivers peaks of 665hp and 800Nm - enough to eclipse one of its most noted rivals, the 992-generation Porsche 911 Turbo S.
Achieved through Aston's engineers modifying the cam profiles, optimising the compression ratio, beefing up the cooling system and then fitting a pair of larger turbos, these colossal outputs mean the Vantage - still driving its rear wheels through an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission - can run 0-100km/h around two tenths quicker than it did previously, all while going on to a top speed beyond the magic 320km/h marker (325km/h).
Sharper chassis to cope
With such an increase in power, Aston has also thoroughly overhauled the control and chassis systems for the Vantage to cope. There's a new Launch Control system, working with the E-Diff (electronically controlled rear differential) to maximise off-the-line traction, while the aluminium structure of the car - with its perfect 50:50 front-to-rear weight distribution - has been reinforced for lateral strength via the addition of new crossmembers.
To combine with this, the adaptive dampers are new and have a quoted '500 per cent increase in bandwidth of force distribution' over the previous-generation hardware, which we think means 'they're very good dampers indeed'. Aston has also retuned the electronic power-assisted steering with a non-isolated column for greater feel and feedback, and a quick 2.27 turns lock-to-lock.
In the arches of the car are forged 21-inch alloys, 9.5 inches wide at the front and fully 11 inches broad at the rear. These are wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport S5 tyres made specifically for the car, which is why they now have 'AML' coding on their sidewalls. These measure 275/35 R21 up front and 325/30 R21 at the rear, and they're said to especially promote front-end grip to the benefit of the Vantage's handling.
To bring all this muscle to a stop, the revised Vantage comes as standard with cast-iron 400mm front brake discs complemented by 360mm rear items. These are drilled for improved heat management, but if you need even greater retardation then carbon ceramic brakes can be specified as an option. Tick this box and you trim 27kg off the Aston's unsprung mass, which is a highly beneficial gain.
Clever active control systems
Topping all of this off is something Aston calls 6D-IMU, or six-dimensional Inertial Measurement Unit. This uses various sensors - in the six-axis accelerometer, the powertrain, the braking system and the E-Diff - to build a detailed picture of exactly what the car is doing in terms of weight transfer. By using this data, the car can then actively control the ride, the handling and the steering to make the vehicle behave at its best, in all weathers, on road and track.
For drift fans, there's also a setting called Adjustable Traction Control (ATC). This allows a degree of slip from the rear tyres without completely switching the system off, which can be set through a number of levels that allow greater and greater slip angles from the rear wheels.
Beyond the power and tech upgrades, you won't miss the front-end redesign of the Aston Martin Vantage. It looks like an all-new car from this aspect, thanks to larger Matrix LED headlamp units and a veined grille which has grown 38 per cent in size. The whole car is 30mm wider, too, while the side-strake cutting into the door is more pronounce, too.
Other changes include frameless door mirrors, while the rear bumper now incorporates side vents and larger-diameter quad tailpipes for the Vantage's exhaust. The familiar ducktail-type boot remains, complete with its bow-like light signature.
While there are 21 body colours available for the revised Vantage, Aston also provides its full Q customisation service. And going even further are three 'liveries' that customers can choose from to add further character to the car's exterior. These add various details in contrast colours and they're known as Pinstripe, Pinstripe and Lipstick, or Pinstripe, Lipstick and Rear Infill.
Cabin finally befits rest of the car
Perhaps the best news about the revised Aston Martin sports car comes within its cabin. Where once it had quick a lacklustre passenger compartment for a vehicle of this opulence and price, a total redesign now has it looking far better inside.
The layout is now centred around an angled console that bears a resemblance to a similar set-up in various Porsche models - but this is no bad thing at all. The 10.25-inch next-gen infotainment system, borrowed from the larger Aston DB12 model, has dropped from a standalone screen mounted high on the dash to a discreet, angled display below the central air vents. There's also a much cleaner and better shaped digital instrument cluster ahead of the driver, which has allowed Aston to make the previously squared-off wheel (ugh) rounder (nice).
Material quality should be high, with hand-stitched Bridge of Weir leather used for most of the Aston's interior finishing. Audiophiles will also be pleased to note that, if they don't like the 390-watt, 11-speaker standard sound system with QuantumLogic processing fitted as standard, there's the option of a monster 15-speaker, 1,170-watt Bowers & Wilkins surround sound upgrade.
Production of the updated Aston Martin Vantage will begin in the first quarter of this year, with deliveries expected into spring and summer. No word yet on whether the AMR manual model will follow on, but we expect it might - along with the Roadster open-top derivative.