We have yet another Aston to feast our eyes upon but hold the phone because this one has a manual gearbox and if that doesn’t excite you then nothing will!
The new Vantage AMR, a lightweight special edition which will be the first current generation Aston Martin to be fitted with a Manual gearbox, has been designed to create the ultimate driving experience for its customers. It’s no secret that performance focused, automatic transmission vehicles are quicker than their manual counterparts, but when it comes to engaging the driver and giving that feel of control and being at one with your car then we all know that nothing beats a manual. The AMR has been fitted with a Graziano developed 7-speed box with a dog-leg first gear allowing 2nd through to 7th, the most commonly used, to be in the usual double H pattern that we are all accustomed to. The gearbox also features AMshift, a system designed to mimic heel to toe downshifting and will auto rev match to allow for smoother deceleration and cornering as a result. All of this is attached to a new lighter Limited slip-diff tuned and calibrated by Astons leading dynamics team.
Removing the automatic 8 speed and changing out a few parts has also meant that the car has shed just shy of 100kg making it lighter overall and more responsive. The AMR has the same 4.0 litre twin-turbo V8 from the regular model creating the same 503bhp output but you will have less torque due to the gearbox change. The standard model will pump out 505 foot pounds of torque whereas the AMR is down to just 461 foot pounds. Not a monumental difference but it is something you may notice. 0-60 time is now at 3.9 seconds, nearly half a second slower but this is of no surprise. Manual gear shifting is always slower than automatic but achieving maximum potential from this car doesn’t come down to its raw pace from a standing start. It all comes down to when you find the twisty bits of the road and that incredible sensation of slamming the gear lever in to the next slot. When you do get it on to a nice long piece of straight road it will still climb to the same top speed of 195mph which is dangerously close to that magical 200.
As with all limited editions, numbers of available AMR’s for purchase are, well, limited. Only 200 units are scheduled for production with the last 59 rolling off the production line being special ‘Vantage 59’ specifications. Finished in Sterling Green with Lime accents, the Vantage 59 couple with the DBS 59 to further celebrate the 60th anniversary of Aston Martins 1-2 finished at the Le Mans 24hr. The other 141 models will be available in white, grey, blue and black and will be setting you back a cool £150,000. The 59 spec will be an additional £15,000 on top of that.
If you have that sort of money going spare and are unfortunate enough to not get your hands on one then never fear because the 7-speed box will be making its way over to the Vantage options list during early 2020. You’ll just have to a wait a little longer before you can own an Aston with a proper gear lever in it.
Images from AstonMartin.com