First Drive: 2019 Aston Martin Vantage Is A Legitimate Porsche 911 Adversary

Rather than roll out the all-new 2018 Aston Martin Vantage V8 road car, bask in the attention (or controversy -- you, the readers, seem to have a lot of mixed opinions about the new design direction) and then rekindle buzz by unveiling the race version, the British automaker decided to let it all rip at once. So, here it is: the Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE, ready to charge screaming into the 2018-19 World Endurance Championship racing season.

The big, Vulcan-inspired aero bits can’t disguise the GTE’s similarity to the road car, which goes far deeper than the bodywork: The same Mercedes-AMG 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 sits under the hood of both road and track Vantage. The transmission has not been announced, but previous-gen AMR cars have used an Xtrac sequential manual. Even the eye-popping color (which looks to us like someone dropped a highlighter into a bottle of whatever the British equivalent of Everclear is, then sprayed it all over the body) carries over as well -- though it is complimented by bright orange “lipstick” on the grille.

Aero aside, the Vantage GTE's exterior looks hew pretty closely to those of the road car. Inside, though, it's all business.

>Drive Review Aston Martin DB11 V8 Aston Martin DB11 V8

>Car Reviews

2018 Aston Martin DB11 V8 first drive: Lighter is always better

By lopping off the front four cylinders and the 243 pounds they weighed, Aston Martin has lowered the DB11’s curb weight to 3,880 pounds, shifted the car’s balance rearward to 49/51 ...

The new Vantage GTE replaces the car Aston has run with since 2012; it remained a legitimate contender to the end, but, as with the road car, it was time for an update. Aston won’t be going into the new season blind; the automaker says the new GTE’s development car has undergone over 8,000 miles of testing, including two 30-hour runs at Spain’s Navarra circuit.

It’s almost like they’re planning on taking the thing back to Le Mans or something. In fact, during the next WEC season, which stretches from May 2018 to June 2019, teams will compete at the Circuit de la Sarthe -- twice.

While the car may be new, the Aston Martin Racing driver lineup is mostly familiar: Darren Turner and Jonny Adam, fresh off a 24 Hours of Le Mans GTE Pro class win, return, as do Nicki Thiim and Marco Sorensen. Additionally, Formula E racer Alex Lynn will join the team for the upcoming season.

Aero components, like the huge box diffuser out back, remind us of the mighty Vulcan

The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 1The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 1
1 of 12Aston Martin Racing didn't waste any time in showing off the new 2018 Vantage GTE race car; the 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 competition version debuted alongside its road-spec counterpart. It's ready to jump into the 2018-19 WEC season.  
The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 2The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 2
2 of 12Aston Martin Racing didn't waste any time in showing off the new 2018 Vantage GTE race car; the 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 competition version debuted alongside its road-spec counterpart. It's ready to jump into the 2018-19 WEC season.  
The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 3The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 3
3 of 12Aston Martin Racing didn't waste any time in showing off the new 2018 Vantage GTE race car; the 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 competition version debuted alongside its road-spec counterpart. It's ready to jump into the 2018-19 WEC season.  
The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 4The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 4
4 of 12Aston Martin Racing didn't waste any time in showing off the new 2018 Vantage GTE race car; the 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 competition version debuted alongside its road-spec counterpart. It's ready to jump into the 2018-19 WEC season.  
The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 5The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 5
5 of 12Aston Martin Racing didn't waste any time in showing off the new 2018 Vantage GTE race car; the 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 competition version debuted alongside its road-spec counterpart. It's ready to jump into the 2018-19 WEC season.  
The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 6The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 6
6 of 12Aston Martin Racing didn't waste any time in showing off the new 2018 Vantage GTE race car; the 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 competition version debuted alongside its road-spec counterpart. It's ready to jump into the 2018-19 WEC season.  
The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 7The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 7
7 of 12Aston Martin Racing didn't waste any time in showing off the new 2018 Vantage GTE race car; the 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 competition version debuted alongside its road-spec counterpart. It's ready to jump into the 2018-19 WEC season.  
The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 8The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 8
8 of 12Aston Martin Racing didn't waste any time in showing off the new 2018 Vantage GTE race car; the 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 competition version debuted alongside its road-spec counterpart. It's ready to jump into the 2018-19 WEC season.  
The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 9The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 9
9 of 12Aston Martin Racing didn't waste any time in showing off the new 2018 Vantage GTE race car; the 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 competition version debuted alongside its road-spec counterpart. It's ready to jump into the 2018-19 WEC season.  
The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 10The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 10
10 of 12Aston Martin Racing didn't waste any time in showing off the new 2018 Vantage GTE race car; the 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 competition version debuted alongside its road-spec counterpart. It's ready to jump into the 2018-19 WEC season.  
The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 11The Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE race car is here Photo 11
11 of 12Aston Martin Racing didn't waste any time in showing off the new 2018 Vantage GTE race car; the 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 competition version debuted alongside its road-spec counterpart. It's ready to jump into the 2018-19 WEC season.  
Here's what's up for grabs at the F1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix>Next Gallery: Up for Grabs at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix » Here's what's up for grabs at the F1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix
12 of 12Next Gallery: Up for Grabs at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 
Graham Kozak

Graham Kozak - Graham Kozak drove a 1951 Packard 200 sedan in high school because he wanted something that would be easy to find in a parking lot. He thinks all the things they're doing with fuel injection and seatbelts these days are pretty nifty too.

See more by this author

Source : https://autoweek.com/article/supercars/heres-what-2018-aston-martin-vantage-looks-race-car

Thank you for visit my website
Here’s what the 2018 Aston Martin Vantage looks like as a race car
Porsche 911 GT3: Why the lineup's unicorn attracts all the attention you can handle
That $2.5-million classic car you bought? It might be a fake
15 foreign exotic cars the feds won't seize
Audi R8 defeats world-class cars yet again. Jeremy Clarkson tests it on the Isle of Man
2015 Porsche Macan: First drive
2011 Volvo S60
GM’s Lutz, Volt Team All “Charged Up” Over David Letterman’s Volt Bashing