I’ve been looking forward to this one.
The Aston Martin Vantage was one of the most beautiful cars of our time. Of all time. I can scarcely believe this is true but the unchanged for production concept car was shown to the public in 2003. Yes, 14 years ago. It’s still absolutely bloody gorgeous. If 14 years can’t take the shine off, not much will. The ’05 V8 Vantage is one of the greats.
So no pressure on the follow-up then.
The last couple of days have seen me staring at the press images, trying to resolve what’s going on here. Trying to love the new Vantage. And failing. Sure, it’s pretty from some angles. Side on, fantastic. Rear three-quarter – exquisite. Direct rear-on it looks too narrow. Anything towards the front though and you see the grille. Oh wow, the grille. What on earth are they thinking?
Where Channing Tatum is Ferrari – clean cut, sharp and with a few nice moves, Aston Martins are meant to be the Jason Statham of the car world. He’ll knock your block off in an exquisitely tailored bag o’ fruit. Except in the case of the new Vantage, the suit is a bit daggy. A bit wide across the shoulders. Like a Donald Trump suit.
It’s like Oasis. The 1977 Vantage was Definitely Maybe – a solid debut album. The second Vantage was (What’s the Story) Morning Glory? – critically acclaimed and perfect in every way. This third one probably drives brilliantly based on the Max Verstappen video, but the styling is very much Be Here Now. As in, Oasis made another album?
Is it co-incidence that Aston Martin decided to launch the Vantage in November? Or is that Movember? The grille has a certain Nigel Mansell, David Boon look to it. Very bushy and very dominant. Launching it in green doesn’t help either – I can’t stop thinking about Chick Hicks.
Also, you should sponsor these guys for Movember. Because it’s a great cause and not because they look rubbish and you feel sorry for them.
The GTE race car is better but it’s still not right. The brake ducts and slats in the grille fill it out. Make it like it’s part of the front structure of the car rather than just that gawping mouth. It helps, but that relief line that leads out under the headlights from the upper edge makes it look like it was grafted on from another car.
So the moral of the story is, if you want a Vantage that looks good, wait a bit for the special editions and racing celebration models that are no doubt in the works. If you want a nice sports coupe to drive every day without looking like a blind git, there’s always the 911, Mercedes GT C or the BMW Maaaaaate. Or the DB11.