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Aston Martin V8 Vantage

andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,387
edited December 2013 in Aston Martin
Aston-Martin has just introduced their new smaller V8 Vantage sports car which is specifically designed to steal sales from the Porsche 911.

There's no way I'll be able to afford one of these $100 vehicles but I think everyone has a car they aspire to and even though I've been a Ferrari and Porsche nut all my life I think right now I'd take the new Aston over anything they offer.

The best car I ever drove was a '67 E-Type 4.2 and I consider the V8 Vantage with it's gorgeous styling the 21st century equivalent of that glorious car.

Did I mention that it's gorgeous image

2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93



  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,387

    What do you think, is this a solid shot at the 911 market or a boutique car?

    Is Ford going to succeed in the US with this car?

    Is 390 hp enough for a $100k car?

    Let's talk V8 Vantage.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,387
    I was beginning to think I was alone in my admiration for this great new car but Edmund's
    agrees with me after theirfirst driveYou need to rev this engine hard to deliver its best, the instantaneous low-down thrust associated with the V12 is lacking. But to drive it hard is to discover the depth of its talent.. Sound like a real sports car, com mbined with looks like this....


    .....I am in serious car lust! :blush:

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • xkssxkss Member Posts: 722
    It will likely take away sales from the 911.

    I'm glad that Aston Martin won't sell out and make an SUV or a sedan.

    check these three great articles about Aston Martin and Henrik Fisker. Fikser was Aston Martin's director of design from 2001 until December of last year. He styled the BMW Z8 while at BMW.

    Inside Aston Martin part one

    Inside Aston Martin part two

    Inside Aston Martin part three

    Aston Martin only has one robot at the factory which fits the body to the frame again using adhesives.

    Aston Martin will avoid distracting gadgets per autoweek.com 7-21-2004.

    Dr. Ulrich Bez, Aston Martin's CEO (since July 2000), used to work for Porsche. Ulrich Bez directed the design, development and introduction of the classic 993.

    check the link for an interview with him

    Dr. Ulrich Bez


    Aston Martin announced in December 2003 that they would be returning to sports car racing and created a new division within Aston Martin known as Aston Martin Racing.

    Aston Martin Racing

    Aston Martin got a new factory in 2003.
  • bsumnerbsumner Member Posts: 39
    I have seen the recent press arond the Vantage. It is a good looking machine. I am taking delivery of a 997 Carrera 4 in November . . . which is a pretty good chunk of change in and of itself (and more than I ever reasonably thought I'd spend on a car at this point in my life). One thing that makes me very comfortable about buying a 911, despite the annoyance of their dealers (about on par with BMW in my view--and severely deficient to Lexus dealers), is that the car is widely known/distributed/etc. If I have a problem, I know that there will be parts, knowledgable service people, etc. I am beginning to understand why some people shell out the $$ they do for turbos, GT2/3s etc. rather than F430s, Gallardos, Vantages, etc. . . . when you actually get closer to writing the check, you want to be sure that the Company has the wherewithal to stand behind the product.

    Just my $0.02. If I weren't as relatively parsimonious as I am--and didn't want to take the social and door-ding risk of driving a spectacle (which is another HUGE downside to AM, Ferrari, Lamborghini, etc.--though some people would argue that the 911's ubiquity is a downside in-and-of itself), I would definitely be tempted. But, bottom-line, until it has more of a track record, it feels too niche for me.

  • habitat1habitat1 Member Posts: 4,282
    I was unable to open your link or find an Autoweek road test of the Vantage. I would like to learn more, before forming a final opinion.

    That said, I do not think the Vantage is as directly competitive with the 911 as a true sports car, as it might be with the 645i, SL500/SL55 and certain other GT cars that push luxury over sport in both their design and marketing. It's a heavy car - 3,461 lbs - which is 150 lbs heavier than my 911 S Cab, 300 lbs heavier than the 911 S Coupe and 400 lbs heavier than the base 911 Coupe. It's cd of 0.34 isn't very good by sedan standards, let alone compared to the 0.28 for the 911.

    I don't think the question of whether or not 390 horsepower is enough for a $100k+ car is the right one. The question is one of performance. With a manufacturers estimate of 0-60 in 4.9 seconds and a top speed of 175, the Vantage appears to be right in line with the $65k Cayman, and discernibly below the 911S. Porsche figures for the 911 S are very conservative compared to what it has been independently tested at, so perhaps the Vantage will fare better. But more important to me than the 911S's 3.9-4.2 second 0-60 ability is the crisp steering and nimble handling. I may be wrong, but I suspect the heavy Vantage, with more of an emphasis on comfort, will be well below the 911/Caymen in the handling department.

    Finally, on the looks front, I am not a big fan of the BMW Z8, which the Vantage designer refers to as one of his favorite designs. The Vantage certainly looks better than the Z8, but if I were going exotic, I'd have to say that it's no Ferrari. Purely subjective opinion.

    All that said, the Vantage appears to be an interesting alternative, that I suspect will do well. But I think it will capture more market share from potential buyers of SL's or 6-series that view it as a sports car by comparison, than 911 buyers like me that view it as a semi-GT car by comparison. And then again, I may be wrong.

    P.S. I happened to own a 1970 E-Type 4.2 4-speed for a glorious 5 months in 1979. bought it from a friend for a whopping $5,000, who then turned around and bought it back from me for $5,000 after I determined I needed relaible transportation to take back to college. Your question "is Ford going to succeed in the US with this car?" sends a few chills through me. I know Jaguar fell out of grace with sports car enthusiasts before Ford took over. But look at them now. Big powerful engines mated to sloppy slushbox transmissions and slightly better than Crown Victoria suspensions. Anyone that can appreciate the E-type must refrain from vomiting. I sure as heck hope the independence of AM in making decisions can be maintained. I would be concerned that, however subtle, Ford might "guide" AM to what it thinks the typical American consumer wants. I may be an atypical driving enthusaist, but as far as what I want, Ford doesn't have a bloody clue.
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,387
    Well, I think perhaps too much has been made of the Vantage vs. 911 thing. They are as you say different kinds of cars and I too think it's a bit heavy for a sports car but, if the literature is to be believed it's the kind of sports car that can be very involving to drive and that to me is the mark of a true sports car.

    You say it's no Ferrari in the styling department but as a lifelong tifoso I lament the loss of the voluptuous fluidity that characterized the great Ferraris of the past. They're going for a very techno look now ceding the beauty crown to Aston IMO.

    As for Ford and Jaguar you say:

    But look at them now. Big powerful engines mated to sloppy slushbox transmissions and slightly better than Crown Victoria suspensions.

    That ship sailed long before Ford, about the time the E-Type 4.2 was replaced by the V12 but I agree there's a danger that Ford will be tempted to pitch A-M to the lowest common denominator but for now let us rejoice that they've produced a wonderful new sports car/GT (take your pick).

    Xkss, thanks for the links, all good stuff.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • xkssxkss Member Posts: 722
    I know Jaguar fell out of grace with sports car enthusiasts before Ford took over. But look at them now. Big powerful engines mated to sloppy slushbox transmissions and slightly better than Crown Victoria suspensions. Anyone that can appreciate the E-type must refrain from vomiting. I sure as heck hope the independence of AM in making decisions can be maintained. I would be concerned that, however subtle, Ford might "guide" AM to what it thinks the typical American consumer wants. I may be an atypical driving enthusaist, but as far as what I want, Ford doesn't have a bloody clue.

    Umm..The new Jaguar XJ has an aluminum chassis and a 6 speed ZF automatic transmission.


    "In development testing on the Nürburgring's Nordschleife, Mike Cross, Jaguar's Chief Engineer of vehicle dynamics, has already turned laps with the naturally aspirated car within four seconds of the eight-minute, 36-second lap times posted by the supercharged XKR, which makes nearly 100 hp more."

    - autoweek.com

    As those links pointed out, Aston Martin knows where they are going and Ulrich Bez knows customers don't want a Aston Martin suv or a sedan like what Porsche is doing and will do within a few years. Aston Martin has returned to racing this year and with victories at Silverstone (FIA GT Championship) and at the 12 Hours of Sebring (against two factory Corvette C6-Rs and several other GT1 cars).

    Also, the new V8 Vantage is indeed more of a competitor to the 911 than an two-ton SL or 6 series.
  • habitat1habitat1 Member Posts: 4,282
    "As those links pointed out, Aston Martin knows where they are going and Ulrich Bez knows customers don't want a Aston Martin suv or a sedan like what Porsche is doing and will do within a few years."

    "Also, the new V8 Vantage is indeed more of a competitor to the 911 than an two-ton SL or 6 series."

    I think you and AM might be forgetting that both the Vanquish and DB9 are (more than) two-ton cars now. Aston Martin can try calling these GT behemouths "sports cars" in all of their marketing literature all day long. The reality is that they are no different in positioning than the 6-series or SL. (I don't even want to give Jaguar credit for building anything today that could be remotely mistaken for a sports car).

    Whether a car company like AM that has been 100% focused upon the GT market can dial up their engineering gears to produce a real sports car to compete with the 911, is to be determined. But the Vantage is still a heavy car, with performance that, it now appears, is below the level of the Cayman. That may be fine for the majority of affluent buyers of GT cars that want a sportier image. Probably not for those of us that want the driving feel of a real sports car.

    I know from your previous posts that you are a long time antagonist of Porsche, which is your perogative. I have nothing against AM, in spite of my fears of Ford, GM, Daimler Chrysler and the UAW. I'm willing to evaluate the 3,500 lb Vantage on it's own merits. But that won't be based upon their corporate PR claims, it will be after I'm called to test drive a 6-speed model for myself. Unfortunately, I am told, fewer than 10-20% are expected to be fitted with a manual and I may have to wait a few months. Not a good start for a "sports car".
  • xkssxkss Member Posts: 722
    The new V8 Vantage is only available with a manual transmission right now.
  • habitat1habitat1 Member Posts: 4,282
    The V8 vantage will not be available until next spring. The dealer I would buy from has 10+ names on the list for an expected allocation of 6-7 cars. I've been invited to see the promotional car currently touring the country, which will be at their dealership Thursday night. Unfortunately, I have an out of town conflict.

    Also, FWIW, the sales manager does not think the Vantage will be cross shopped with the 911 as much as other sport "GT's" such as the SL55, M6, etc. The average age on his list is "mid to late 50's". He indicated most currently own Mercedes, BMW's, Jaguars and Bentleys. He thinks the biggest market will actually come from prospective purchasers of Vanquishes and DB9's that decide to downsize into something more sporty. But, in his words, most of the buyers on his list are not "pure sports car" shoppers to begin with and are looking for a "heavy dose of luxury, style and exclusivity" to go along with "highly adequate, but not harsh or neck snapping" performance. Many on the list also have a particular affinity for British cars. Mind you, this is only one dealer, but I found his comments and observations interesting.
  • merc1merc1 Member Posts: 6,081
    I think at some level all these cars compete with one another when a rich person goes looking for new wheels. Those comments were interesting indeed, including one aspect I never really thought about - " Many on the list also have a particular affinity for British cars". Never thought about that. Just like there are folks who like Japanese or German or American or Italian, there is a British enthusiast also. You gotta have some money for have an affinity for British because just like Italian cars there really aren't any cheap ones sold here. Well I guess the Jag X and S-Types are cheap compared to Astons/Bentleys/Rollers, but they haven't exactly been the object of much desire.

    I can see why someone would have a thing for British cars, they are in most case very curious items and usually pretty good looking or in the case of the DB9 - gorgeous!

  • spiritintheskyspiritinthesky Member Posts: 207
    Well, last week I did get to see the "touring" Vantage in person at Rahal Motors outside of Pittsburgh. Strictly look and touch, but no test drives.

    Conclusion: Porsche would have had some very serious competition, were they still producing the 928 S4 or variant. Other than the fact that the Vantage is strictly a two seater, that is the Porsche it would have competed against very effectively. The Jaguar XKR should be worried. The Mercedes SL as well, although the fact that its a convertible will limit direct competition.

    In discussing the car over wine and cheese with several other attendees, the above assessment as to who will likely be buying the car appears to be right on. Two couples I spoke with are considering getting the Vantage in lieu of a Vanquish, now that they are empty nesters. But I could tell that neither of them would be comfortable in a more serious sports car like the 911. Neither of the wives could (or would ever) drive sticks and even the husbands were asking when an automatic would be available.

    Whether or not the Vantage can compete with the 911 or Ferrari 360 in performance appears to be moot. It doesn't look to me like it will be being bought as a serious sports car, but rather as a sexy luxury sport tourer. And on that front, it is likely to be a winner.
  • merc1merc1 Member Posts: 6,081
    And its a looker too.....


  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,387
    Great shot! Just downloaded it to my wallpaper. :)

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,387
    of today (well next year)?

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • spiritintheskyspiritinthesky Member Posts: 207
    Hold up - you are drooling on your computer. ;)

    Have you seen the car in person? I have and while it is certainly attractive, I didn't think I was looking at something out of this world. Frankly, it reminded me of the first time I saw the Jaguar XK8. Or the Mercedes SL.

    If the car has a weak element, it's clearly the front grill. It's too busy for my tastes and the opening rides too high up on the hoodline. And, as I suspected, the aerodynamics of the car are pretty poor by today's sports car standards. The Vantage may claim a top speed of 175, but I think that would be an unstable 175 compared to a 911 or Ferrari 360/430. Too much air will be pushed under the car rather than over it and I suspect lift would become a serious issue as one approaches maximum speed.

    Perhaps I see too much of the desinger's previous BMW Z8 in the front end of this car. I drive a 2003 M5 and have been a loyal fan of BMW for several decades. But, that said, the Z8 was just awkward looking to me. And, coincidentally, it doesn't match the high speed stability of other sports cars in its class. The Vantage is certainly more elegant than the Z8 from the midpoint back, but the front end is still not quite right, IMO. In spite of being the old kid on the block, I actually prefer the looks of the Porsche 997. Probably because it looks more purposeful and has the appearance of high speed stability. At least to me. I also prefer the 360/430, but not as much.

    To each their own, however, and I certainly wouldn't kick a Vantage out of my garage.
  • merc1merc1 Member Posts: 6,081
    Well I think the problem (if it has one) with the Vantage is that it looks like a shrunken DB9. The DB9 which I've seen a lot gets my vote for the best looking production car in the world today. The Vantage I've only seen in prototype form back in 2003 at Detroit.

  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,387
    my friends, and I can't really argue with them. I haven't seen a V8 Vantage in the metal, for that matter I have yet to see a DB-9 (I live about 75 miles from the nearest A-M Dealer :()

    Both the DB-9 and the Porsche 997 are fabulous-looking cars and it might turn out I'd like them even better if I saw them in the same place but I think based on photographs the smaller car is better looking than the DB-9 and fresher looking than the 997.

    As for non-visual attributes, the Cayman S is probably a better sports car than any of them.

    Yes, Mr. Fisker does tend to repeat himself but I've developed a new appreciation for the style of the Z8 based on the photos in a recent issue of Roundel.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • designmandesignman Member Posts: 2,129
    This car is like the bimbo on the centerfold of a D-class porn magazine. C’mon my brothers, get your act together, there’s a real and better world out there.

  • xkssxkss Member Posts: 722
    that picture is of the 2003 concept car.
  • merc1merc1 Member Posts: 6,081
    Stunning to look at IMO.





  • habitat1habitat1 Member Posts: 4,282
    It is indeed a good "looker" but not quite as stunning to drive, as I somewhat expected, according to the article:

    "Porsche has been building 911s for more than 40 years. The V8 is very capable, but it’s short of that final, magical polish that separates a good car from a great one – the polish that comes from endless refinement. Its performance is strong enough, and its dynamic repertoire, while no threat to the 911’s, is broad."

    Certainly will give the SL500/55 and BMW 650i a run for thier money, though.
  • merc1merc1 Member Posts: 6,081
    Oh I'm not surprised. It would take a small outfit like Aston-Martin years to knock off the 911, if possible.

    Porsche doesn't have much to worry about especially so many variants of the 997 (Turbo, GT2, GT3, RS) coming over the next year.

    I still suspect that the Aston is still more of a GT car than a full-on sports car.

  • habitat1habitat1 Member Posts: 4,282
    Agreed on the "GT" comment. And, other than the stiffer price, I can also see them pulling lots of sales away from the new Jaguar XKR. The Aston is better looking inside and out, equal or better performing, and a much more exclusive British car for those with put exclusivity and "British" on their priority list.

    That may not be what Ford had intended, but I think it is possible that they will cannibalize at least as many Jaguar XKR sales as 911 sales.
  • merc1merc1 Member Posts: 6,081
    Everything still all-good with the 911 CS Cabrio?

  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,387
    to continually compare the A-M V8 to the 911
    as they are obviously different kinds of cars.
    Given the general layout and size of the car
    it's closer to being a British Corvette than
    a British 911.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • habitat1habitat1 Member Posts: 4,282
    Except that it's a lot closer to a 911 in price. I think it would be a leap to think that too many $45k-$65k Corvette shoppers are going to cross shop a $110k Aston Martin.
  • habitat1habitat1 Member Posts: 4,282
    Other than an annoying little rattle in the convertible roof, everything's great at 3,800 miles. I just need to take the time to get the car back to the dealer 60 miles away to get it fixed. That's one of the downsides of shopping for the best price, but the $10k discount is worth a little aggravation, I guess.

    Thanks for asking. I feel like you should have been honorarily named on the title. ;) If you ever get to DC on business or pleasure, a free drive is awaiting. :)
  • xkssxkss Member Posts: 722
    As for the new Jaguar XKR...

    It isn't even out yet.

    How does the V8 Vantage compete with an SL500? The SL weighs around 800 pounds more. The new XK convertible will compete with the SL even though the XK weighs hundreds of pounds less and over 500 pounds less than a BMW 650Ci convertible.
  • kansashickkansashick Member Posts: 39
    I ordered a new AM V8 last week paying $125k sticker for it. The car will be delivered in May or June -- the waiting list for the St. Louis dealer, the newest in the US, is short.

    If I don't like the car, I can unload it at a $20 - 30k profit.

    I am in my late 50's, was a fan of British cars in their heyday owning numerous of those problematic beasts. I didn't buy a Porsche because they are as common as mud where I live and I have already owned one. FWIW, I used to race and don't need an automatic.
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,387
    Porsches are as common as mud in Kansas? :confuse:

    Let us know how you like it, I'm already turning green.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • spiritintheskyspiritinthesky Member Posts: 207
    "If I don't like the car, I can unload it at a $20 - 30k profit."

    I certainly wouldn't count on that. Car speculation, even more so than condo speculation, is a risky business. I acknowledge that there are always a few fools with more money than common sense that might overpay for something and you may be lucky enough to find one. But I wouldn't take title to an AM V8 at full MSRP with the expectation that, after driving it for a couple thousand miles I would be able to get back more than 90% of what I paid for it, let alone a profit.

    The only sub-$250k car I would be confident of being able to immediately re-sell at a significant premium over full MSRP would be a Ferrari 430. Not an AM V8, SL65, new M5 or 911. And, in fact, if you look at longer term resale values, a "common as mud" 911 at 4 years and 40,000 miles will have suffered less depreciation than a similar vintage/mileage Vantage. And way less than a Vanquish.

    Buy the car at full MSRP because you like it, but don't count on a fool to take you out of it for a profit if it turns out you don't.
  • joeyeviljoeyevil Member Posts: 1
    i just joined this late discussion because i went to see the new amv8. awesome looking car. too bad it is so new there are no statistics on reliability. recently, a philadelphia flyer returned his aston martin db9 because he took it home and it would not start the next day. he traded it for a gallardo and said it was the best sports car he ever drove. if i buy a new amv8 does anyone know what i am getting into? also, if i pay $120,000 is it worth $80,000 in two years? should i just wait. help!!!
  • kansashickkansashick Member Posts: 39
    I was assuming a modest profit on an immediate resale because some dealers are selling the cars at $20+k over MSRP. The waiting list is pretty long. That really does not matter though, if I like the car, I will keep it. If I do not, I will get rid of it and buy another Porsche, probably a Carrera S or Turbo.

    Porsches are common in the part of Kansas that borders Kansas City because we don't have any options. No Ferrari dealers, no Maseratti, etc. So, if you have the bucks, you buy a Porsche or go to St. Louis.
  • spiritintheskyspiritinthesky Member Posts: 207
    You aren't paying for this opinion, so consider that when calculating its value. ;)

    The V8 is new, but the other modern Aston models aren't. I'd take their reliability and resale value as the basis for what to expect with the V8. There may be some new model bugs, but AM has had a fair amount of time to iron out the major ones pre-production.

    As for resale, that's hard to predict. Historically, with their more expensive models, Aston's resale has been average, at best. The V8 might do better, since it will be the most "affordable" AM. On the other hand, it has not gotten glowing reviews as a true "sports car". And "GT" cars historically don't do as well in resale. So, if I would have to guess on a relative scale, the AM V8 will do better than Maseratti, about the same as AMG Mercedes (SL55), but not as good as Porsche and way below Ferrari.

    P.S. Last check, the Flyers don't have too many Rhodes scholars on the team. A Gallardo is two rungs down from the refinement of a Ferrari 430. And I say that without prejudice, having never owned a Ferrari. But I did have a Muira in my younger days, and have driven both the Gallardo and 430, back to back.
  • spiritintheskyspiritinthesky Member Posts: 207
    You may be right on a quick resale. But the ability to flip a car for a profit is often fleeting. Somebody in Pittsburgh is advertising a "must sell" 2006 M5 for $5k under MSRP. Same phone number that was in an ad 2 months ago asking $10k over MSRP "upon arrival".

    I've decided to wait for the Porsche Turbo (997) myself, although the 997 Carerra S is damn nice, too. The problem I have is that I can't seem to be satisfied with a garage queen. I will put 10,000+ miles on whatever I buy, given that we have real estate holdings in several nearby states. The Porsche 911 may not be as exclusive, but it is the most durable daily driver of the sports cars I would consider.
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,387
    IMO if you have to even ask about the resale on a new V8 you don't want one. Since it's a new model no one knows but there's always the chance that you'd take a huge bath.

    It's a car for some one who has so dough they don't care about resale or for someone who plans to keep it forever.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • amv8amv8 Member Posts: 7
    I don't know... I feel I am a rather astute buyer of vehicles, I have owned several luxury cars and sold them at no loss or a profit, but I have bought used and very carefully. I am in my early 30's, and am considering taking the plunge and buying my first actual new car, the V8. I don't think this car will lose a lot of value, because it is 1) the least expensive AM made. 2) it is extremely beautiful and that alone creates some demand. 3) it is a brand new model and brand new body styles tend to depreciate the least 4) Aston will most likely raise its price througout the next few years. I could be completely off base... I mean no one knows for sure... but I know that what holds value, is the attractive-ness of a car. Look at the values on the used Infiniti G35 coupe. Its a desirable car and for a Nissan product, has kick-butt resale. I think the same will be of the V8.
  • bsumnerbsumner Member Posts: 39
    Best of luck to the buyers . . . it is a beautiful car, and a very English car, for all of the good and bad that that implies. I would certainly consider one if it was $100k loaded.

    However, when you get north of $100K (on a sports-car/GT car basis, that is), I have a hard time justifying anything other than a Ferrari (most models--particularly the F430--but not the hideous Enzo) or a Gallardo (watch "TopGear" on the Discovery channel--just gave the Gallardo a brilliant review--only downside was that it's not a Ferrari--which is a criticism I can live with). I don't even think that a 911 Turbo is worth the $$ improvement over the straight 911 . . . if you want to step up, just get a F430. I know these rides are somewhat crass and draw too much attention, but >$100k is an awful lot to spend on a car . . . and it seems to me that you should demand the best car if you're paying such a big price. Particularly given the relatively tepid reviews that the Vantage has received.

    Don't get me wrong, I like the idea of (and much of the execution of) the Vantage, but I just think it is too costly for what you get . . . and add the fact that service will be spotty and geographically limited, and that reliability is a big question mark, it makes it that much easier for me to lean towards a 650Ci, M6, 997, etc. They are awfully good http://coochas.com/porsche/coochas-911videos.html
  • amv8amv8 Member Posts: 7
    I saw that Top Gear review if thats what you mean. Interesting way to look at it, but if you take out the 997, the AMV8 tied for a time with an M6 that had 120 more HP. But of course it got no credit for that. No one said "the superb chassis of the Aston allows it to run the same time as an M6 with 120 more HP".. which is basically what it was. Just to note, car and driver rated the V8 first in a comparo with the 997. So it is truly just opinion. Even after seeing the 997 rated first in Top Gear, 70% of the veiwers said they would buy the Aston.

    Is the 997 a second faster around a mountain road with a race car driver behind the wheel in the rain? sure.... but who cares. How many times do you actually run a car like that?

    The AM is art on wheels, inside and out. That accounts for a lot in my book... the 997 as my girlfriend put it, "looks 80's". Not to blame the looks of a classic. That is currently my second choice for a car. But there is a WORLD of difference in terms of form and quality of materials in the two cars. Right now I am very torn on buying a 2004/5 996TT or the V8.. and I am leaning towards the V8.
  • spiritintheskyspiritinthesky Member Posts: 207
    From the looks of your tag name "amv8", it would appear that you aren't THAT torn between an AMV8 and a 996TT. But if you are, some things you might want to consider:

    The performance of the 997S is WORLDS above the AMV8 and, as much as I hate to admit it (as a current M5 and former M1 owner), the M6. The time difference in the Top Gear test wasn't a second. It was 7 seconds on a run that the 911S did in 1:28. That's nearly a 10% difference, which is HUGE. Almost unbelievably huge. But, more importantly for me, the 911S drives, handles and feels like a true world class sports car. The 4,000+ lb M6 never really intended to be anything more than a uber-powerful GT. It's the AMV8 that teased us with claims of being a 911-beater, but has fallen well short in both objective performance and subjective feel.

    As far as the looks of the AMV8, after spending a night at a wine and cheese "unveiling", neither my wife nor I found it "art on wheels". From many angles, it has great lines. But from the front or three quarters, the grill and hood look exceedingly bulky. (Same problem with the M6 and old Z8, by the way). Frankly, we were both more impressed the first time we saw the XK8 nearly 10 years ago.

    Finally, if looks are that important to you, why are you even considering the 996TT? I am sure you realize there is a "world" of difference between the 996 and 997. Even I wouldn't take the extra power of the 996TT over the improved 997S interior (and exterior) and better handling. Fortunately, in several months, the 997TT won't require any compromises.

    Looks are subjective. My wife thought the AMV8 looked a little "fat", and Ferrari 360 is art on wheels. Your girlfriend sees an 80's look in the 911 - which Jeremy from Top Gear would claim is because she probably isn't old enough to remember back 40 years ago, or she'd say it looks 60's.

    Let's face it, both the 911S and AMV8 - and the bloaty M6 - are damn nice cars. So if you get the AMV8 because you (and your girlfriend) like its looks, good for you. Seriously. I had to horse trade to get my wife to accept my ordering a new 997 TT instead of buying a friend's 360. ;)
  • amv8amv8 Member Posts: 7
    You know, I must say I do not see that "world" of difference between the 996 and 997 but I am sure its there, I am just not familiar with either to a great extent and have just had two VERY short test drives. The 996TT clearly did feel like it would walk away from the 997S in a straight line. Also the resale is a bit of a factor for me, a 996TT has taken its hit. 997 has not. And I don't even know what will happen with the Aston. Looks are subjective I suppose, I have never seen a better looking car. Of course I have yet to see it in person. Congrats on your 997TT. Why don't you take that first year hit and call me when you want to sell it! :D
  • spiritintheskyspiritinthesky Member Posts: 207
    "Of course I have yet to see it in person."

    Of course?? Well, it's not even on my serious shopping list and I was personally invited by the local AM dealer to their wine and cheese reception back in November to view the travelling model in person. You need to introduce yourself to an AM dealership as a serious potential buyer.

    "The 996TT clearly did feel like it would walk away from the 997S in a straight line".

    No doubt, the TT's extra power is an advantage - but mostly at high speeds. I've driven properly broken in models of both the 2005 997S coupe and 996TT. The difference to 70-80 mph is minimal, IMO. If you were driving cars with less than 4,000 miles on the odometer, don't consider it valid. One of the car magazines tested a fully broken in 997S at 0-60 in 3.9 seconds. That's as good as the 996TT ever achieved. In any event, the AMV8 is significantly slower. What I liked about the 997S over the 996TT was it's more nimble handling. The chassis refinements are just what I was looking for. The only 996 version you could still get me into would be the GT3 or GT2. I am hoping that the 997TT with AWD retains the handling feel of the 997 C2S. But again, from the reviews I've seen, the AMV8 is not close to any 911 in handling feel. Much more of a GT car than a sports car feel.

    "Looks are subjective I suppose, I have never seen a better looking car."

    You are absolutely right about subjectivity. But again, don't gush over the photos. The upright grill and front end of the AMV8 is enormous. By itself, it defies a "sports car" label, IMO. Photos I've seen do not accurately represent this. The Jaguar XK8 front end looks selte by comparison. You definitely need to see this car in person before making any "best looking" judgements. And if your interest is in a British looking GT car, you might not change your mind. In that regard it is uniquely good looking.
  • amv8amv8 Member Posts: 7
    Please tell me why you say you would only consider a 996 GT2/GT3. You would take a GT3 over a TT?

    You know C&D rated the handling of the V8 *BETTER* than the 997? I think its this month's issue. I think the V8 is not so much "GT" like you say. Its supposed to be quite nibmle. I will reserve judgment until I see/drive the aston. Its supposed to get here next month.
  • spiritintheskyspiritinthesky Member Posts: 207
    "Please tell me why you say you would only consider a 996 GT2/GT3. You would take a GT3 over a TT"?

    I prefer lighter weight, RWD to the heavier 996TT AWD. Strictly personal. But if the 997TT handles as good as the 997S, I can live with the extra 200+ lbs that the AWD costs. I have driven the 997 C4S, but it wasn't broken in and I couldn't get a good feel for it.

    As far as C&D goes, you better re-read the article. From their website:

    "The British answer to the Porsche 911 is $10,000 cheaper than anticipated in an earlier story (C/D, April 2005) but still costs $30,000 more than the Carrera S that can beat its performance."

    Let me throw a question back at you. Why the AMV8 vs. the old 996TT? It doesn't sound like you are power hungry, since even the 997S is signifcantly quicker than the AMV8. So, for quite a bit less money than the old, now outdated 996TT, you can get a more attractive, better handling and only slightly slower 997S.

    The 996TT is a "hold" but not a "buy" IMO. If I owned one, I'd happily keep it. But I wouldn't buy a new left over one at this point.
  • kein_mitleidkein_mitleid Member Posts: 1
    Good day,

    Reliability data is commonly available for most cars; for example, many websites/magazines/forums/etc. offer comprehensive information on certain statistics of many car models (for example, car X from Y make has had 24 recalls, an average rate of 13 problems per 10,000 miles, etc. [they can get pretty creative, but this info gives us a good idea what we can expect if we buy these cars.])

    If there is ONE THING I absolutely loathe in any high-priced item, it's for it to be an unreliable piece of junk. You know when you bought that 6000$ high-tech big-screen TV that started to have glitches and problems after just 12 months? Or you just bought a new cordless electric saw for 500$ only to find out that something is flawed, or that something has broken sooner than expected; or, if you're a hunter or shooter, you just bought a fancy 4000$ rifle that would have feeding/ejecting problems after just firing 100-200 rounds - or worse, that a high-quality cartridge exploded in the chamber?!

    Well, take those sources of frustration, and multiply them a thousandfold when it comes to cars. We know, for example, as a general rule, that Toyota/Lexus, notwithstanding any prejudice or affection towards their vehicles, make extremely reliable products. Some Volvos and Hondas too have that ironclad reputation. Ford cars have been strongly chastised due to their apparent reliability problems (especially the Jaguar lineup of 1998-2004.) German cars, on the other hand, have often been criticised of "being plagued with electrical problems." But we never hear anything of the upper-luxury segment. Most people would argue that exotics are rarely driven more than a few thousands of kilometers per year, at the most, and that repair and maintenance costs are not problems since they are expected to be able to afford even the most outrageous price for replacement/repairs (friend of mine told me 14,000 USD for upgraded ceramic brakes on the F430!!)

    This said, my eyes are really taking a liking to the new Aston Martin Vantage, or maybe the DB9 if things go extraordinarily well, or I might get one used (2002-2006) from E-Bay; it would be a huge step up (presently own an old Hyundai! lived in bad conditions with a 3-litre fuel tank for the past few years... :-[) Thus, if I actually do decide to go ahead and own one in the very near future, is it a headache waiting to happen? Any feedback/info on reliability? Will I be enslaved to the dealership's few "certified" mechanics? Will they be profiteering from the rarity of replacement parts, etc.? Though I am willing to replace brake discs/tyres often due to the pothole-infested roads, given that I am intending to drive it as my daily car - however, more importantly, am I setting myself up for a whole lot of waiting time at the garage or being supremely angered and hating myself for ever making such a purchase?
  • habitat1habitat1 Member Posts: 4,282
    For someone potentially going from a Hyundai to an Aston Martin, I think you need to do a lot more firsthand research to satisfy yourself of what you might be in for.

    The AMV8 isn't even out yet, so it wasn't on my shopping list. And, as others have suggested, it's not quite a true sports car, more like a cross between a sports car and a GT. But I did briefly consider the Ferrari 430.

    I ended up with a 911(997)S Cabriolet. In no small part due to my conviction that, if I was going to spend in the neighborhood of $100k, I not only wanted something that was going to look and perform like a $100k car, bu also something that was reliable, durable and capable of being something other than a weekend driver and garage queen the rest of the time. I was spoiled by a $32k Honda S2000 that cost me $300 in total service over 2.5 years. Our 5 month old 911 already has 5,000 miles on the odometer and my wife and daughters have spent more time in the car between October and February than the average 360/430 owner spends behind the wheel in a year, or two..

    Will the AMV8 be a durable daily driver? One would hope so. But the other concern is the very limited dealer network. In the immediate DC area, there are 4 Porsche dealerships, 3 obnoxious ones and an OK one. I went 50 miles away within which there are 4 more and got a great deal with great service. There is one AM dealer within 100+ miles of DC, and it's under the same ownership as the most obnoxious Porsche dealership in the region. Good luck to anyone buying an AM in the greater DC area. :cry:

    Hyundai to Aston Martin? Good luck. ;)
  • amv8amv8 Member Posts: 7
    OK my logic of getting the aston is that there isn't any. I am just going overboard in price and risk for a car that I find really beautiful, inside and out. I am willing to spend that extra for.... lust. :surprise: I hate buying a car and losing a lot of money on it. The 996T seems like it has lost most of what it will lose. Turbos tend to hold their value well. Look at the old ones... they still go for a lot of money. They are more exclusive. A new 997S will take a BIG hit in the next couple of years.

    The AM does have a few advantages that may help its resale. Its low production, exclusive, better than most other aston products in terms of value to begin with, and can be considered semi-exotic if for nothing other than its low production numbers. Its the least expensive car in the manufacturer's lineup. Porsche also sells boxters. Its like buying the worst house in the best neighborhood versus the best house in the worst neighborhood. That's how I am looking at it. Am I crazy?
  • amv8amv8 Member Posts: 7
    You are really going from a Hyundai to an Aston? that's got to be the biggest jump in the history of car sales. Did you try pulling up to the Aston dealer in the Hyundai and asking to test drive a DB9? :)

    I can tell you this for reliability... things have changed at AM. They have a new factory with Ford money, the engine in the V8 is built in Germany, Volvo has done all the safety and helped a lot with the chassis, and if you look at a DB9 versus a DB7 for example, its night and day. If fit and finish are any indication, things have improved tenfold at AM. I really felt the DB9 I sat in had some real quality.

    As for the dealer network, its a problem. I have a dealer in my town, but I am not sure I like their attitude honestly. They are a little snobby. Its like they are doing ME a favor selling me an Aston. But if Vantage had a great dealer network, proven reliability, and ran around a track like a Porsche 997, they would be selling 30,000 a year like Posrche and not 3000, and there would go all the exclusivity. It's a car thats clearly not for everybody.
  • habitat1habitat1 Member Posts: 4,282
    Not to jump into someone else's discussion, but

    "The 996T seems like it has lost most of what it will lose. Turbos tend to hold their value well. Look at the old ones... they still go for a lot of money. They are more exclusive. A new 997S will take a BIG hit in the next couple of years."

    I don't think your statements are completely correct. Certainly new vs. used is going to suffer greater depreciation. But if you are talking new vs. new, I believe a 997S will hold it's value much better than a leftover 2005 996TT, even if you get a hefty discount on the 996. I carefully checked "real world" resale values here in the DC area before purchasing, and the Turbos depreciate more than the non-Turbos. Also, the 997 has been pretty much universally acclaimed as a significant imporvement over the 996. I can trade (and might) my 2005 997S for a 2006 (different color) and take a $7-10k hit. That's not too bad in my book.

    As far as the AMV8 holding it's value as well as or better than a 911, that's a big gamble in my opinion. Once the initial interest wears off (and, perhaps, the lower performance sets in), trying to sell a used Aston Martin with their limited dealer network could be a bear. Maybe not if you live in South Beach or LA, but most other places.

    The Maserati Spyder was supposed to have great resale value after Ferrari bought them, since it could be "the least expensive home in a good neighborhood". Hasn't happened. A Ferrari 360 (and Porsche 911) would have been a far better 3 year investment than the Maserati.
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