Color us surprised: the new Aston Martin DBS will not be called the DBS. Instead, the boys from Gaydon are dusting off an old nameplate for the new grand tourer: Vanquish.
The Aston Martin DBS’s run is coming to an end–we hear that the Ultimate Carbon Edition model is essentially the end of the line for the car — and a replacement model is well on its way. We’ve already seen a preview concept, dubbed AM310, at the Villa D’Este Concours D’Elegance, and it seemed certain that the new car would wear the DBS badge.
Not so: Car magazine was lucky enough to snag a photo and brief video of an un-camouflaged test vehicle on the back of a transporter, and lo and behold: that car wore a Vanquish badge. Judging by the slick spoiler and One-77-esque taillights, the Vanquish in question matches both the AM310 concept and prototype we recently spotted lapping the Nurburgring. If so, this marks the first time since 2007 that the Vanquish name will appear on a brand new Aston model. That car, which rose to some fame as James Bond’s ride du jour in Die Another Day, was built between 2001 and 2007. It had a front-mounted 5.9-liter V-12 engine making 450 horsepower (521 in Vanquish S guise), a 2+2 layout (on some models), rear wheel drive, and a slinky body –all traits that continued when the Vanquish was replaced by the 510-horse DBS in 2007.
With that understood, the countdown is on to the new Aston Martin Vanquish. So far we know that the car will continue with the same VH platform as the DB9 and DBS, and will probably still soldier on with the same 5.9-liter V-12 engine as before, but will make as much as 600 horsepower to the previous DBS’s 510.The new body seems to be taking plenty of cues, also, from siblings like the Virage (think angular headlamps) and mighty One-77, with its muscular rear wheel arches and fluidic tail lamps. The Vanquish will also take some construction cues–namely an increased use of carbon fiber stopping short of a full carbon monocoque–from the One-77.
Considering that the 100th anniversary of Aston Martin is this year and the AM310 debuted at Villa D’Este, a Pebble Beach 2012 unveiling of the new Vanquish wouldn’t be out of the question, which would set the car up for an early 2013 release date.