World Unique First Drive: Aston Martin Vulcan
World Unique First Drive: Aston Martin Vulcan

Author: World Unique First Drive: Aston Martin Vulcan

It’s the Aston Martin Vulcan, Aston’s monitor-only, One-77-primarily based reply to the McLaren P1 GTR and Ferrari FXXK. It’s acquired 820bhp and, above 190mph, delivers more kilos of downforce than it weighs.

Wait, doesn’t that mean…?

Yep, it’s the old F1 chestnut – discover someplace to drive upside down and the 1350kg Vulcan will glue itself to the ceiling.

And also you’ve driven it?

Yep. Wasn’t a bad day out as these items go. Bought to play on the Abu Dhabi GP circuit and all.

Sorry, being an idiot. Aston is only building 24 of these and for 2 days one of many £1.eight million machines was ours. It was a massive, large privilege and one hell of an experience. Downshifts shock the automobile, flames flash and lick about, the side pipes pop, rumble and crash, shift lights flash, gears whine, the V12 soars and shrieks – it’s a mashing, roaring mechanical melee. So yeah, just a bit special.

And it’s based mostly on a One-77?

Kind of. The back story runs something like this: Fraser Dunn, chief engineer of Aston’s Q Advanced Engineering division, and David King, Director of Advanced Operations and Motorsport, received chatting about some old One-seventy seven improvement prototypes that had been kicking around. Unsurprisingly their first thought was to make a faster one. They envisioned a One-seventy seven R.

The difficulty was that the project that interested and excited them additionally purchased out the small boys in almost every other division at Aston Martin. Design needed a bit of the pie, and when they obtained the go ahead to make some sweeping changes, including shaping the bodywork in carbon instead of aluminium, each different department started pushing to make equally important changes.

So the plan to make use of the present 7.three-litre V12 was abandoned. Aston Martin Racing pointed out that they had a really potent 6.0-litre V12 running in the Vantage GT3 racer, that, with a significant quantity of modification (including gaining a litre of capability), would deliver on one of the key parameters – over 800bhp.

What about the aero, too?

OK, right here’s one for you – guess which single aspect on the automobile delivers essentially the most downforce?

Easy, gotta be that rear wing. You would taxi a Boeing on that.

Nope, it’s the beneathbody diffuser. Look at the dimensions of the entrance splitter and picture how much air it channels underneath the car. And because it’s front-engined somewhat than mid-engined, once that air is slicing alongside beneath, the diffuser will be opened out earlier, generating more suck additional forwards.

Nevertheless it’s not just the large aero components. These vents aft of the front wings extract high pressure air that builds up in the front wheelarches. The race-minded engineers needed them to expel upwards by the bonnet, however Marek Reichman, Aston’s design chief, wouldn’t allow that – he needed the large expanse of Supercar bonnet – in order that they vent onto the flanks. The aero compromise turned out to have an unanticipated profit: the tumbling, extracted low pressure air attracts higher pressure air from the bonnet down on to the sides of the automotive, improving the flow.

OK, nevertheless it’s not that powerful alongsideside the McLaren and Ferrari, is it?

By way of pure numbers, no. It delivers 820bhp at 7750rpm and 575lb ft of torque at 6500rpm, while a P1 GTR has 986bhp and 737lb ft. Both weigh inside a number of kilos of each other, but right here’s the factor about power figures: they’re disruptive. They condense every thing about a automotive’s efficiency into a solitary, net digestable, simply repeatable number. Nevertheless it’s what that horsepower seems like, that’s the ticket, and within the naturally aspirated V12 Aston it feels pretty bloody special.

The sensation of energy at idle is colossal, the whole automobile trembles, and should you blip the revs, they scream to the limiter and back immediately – vap, vap, vap – correct motorsport stuff. It feels correctly hardcore – huge seats inside, F1-style steering wheel, juddery clutch when pulling away, gear whine, squeaky brakes and all of the rest.