In Depth

Aston Martin Vanquish S Volante breaks cover

Soft-top gets a more powerful V12 engine and new carbon fibre detailing

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Aston Martin has taken the wraps of its Vanquish S Volante, a soft-top variant of its most expensive grand touring car. 

While it features the naturally aspirated 6.0-litre V12 engine from the coupe, tweaks to the inlet manifold allow the convertible to produce an extra 3bhp for a total output of 595bhp. 

The eight-speed Touchtronic gearbox has also been refined, with "faster shift times promised", AutoExpress reports, and the suspension system has been tweaked to "sharpen things up" in sportier modes.

Aston Martin has yet to confirm any performance figures, but expect the Volante to match the coupe's zero to 62mph of 3.5secs and top speed of 201mph. 

Outside, the convertible retains most of the coupe's muscular styling, including the quad-exhaust configuration and wide carbon fibre front splitter, similar to the hardcore Vantage GT12. 

However, the Volante comes with the option of two sets of 20ins five-spoke wheels, available in either gloss black or silver. Carbon fibre detailing, including new bonnet louvres, are also available for an additional cost. 

There are no prices yet, but it is thought the Volante will cost a little more than the coupe's £199,950. However, optional extras will see that figure rise.

Aston Martin Vanquish S:Prices, specs and reviews

3 January

Luxury British carmaker Aston Martin has revealed its second-generation Vanquish S grand tourer - and the new car comes with a higher performance and tweaked aerodynamics.

Powered by the original 6.0-litre naturally aspirated V12 engine from the base model, the Vanquish S has greater potency than its previous incarnation, up from 568bhp to 592bhp. This launches it from zero to 62mph in 3.5secs and gives it a top speed of 201mph. Aston Martin's eight-speed automatic gearbox has also been improved, reducing the time between gearshifts. On top of that, the new car is smoother at lower speeds. 

Along with this boost in power comes a new front splitter and rear diffuser that resembles the Vantage GT12, as well as the quad-exhaust layout from the limited-edition Vanquish Zagato.

With retuned suspension for more direct handling and interior styling tweaks, is the Vanquish S a worthy upgrade on the previous model?

Here's what the experts are saying.

Reviews

"It isn't the quickest or most sophisticated luxury GT on the market", says Auto Express, but its "sledgehammer" V12 engine and "beautiful ride quality" set it apart from the competition. Improvements to the transmission mean the Vanquish S "pulls away smoothly" and glides through the gears to maintain a calm driving environment. 

While Aston Martin has focused its efforts on developing a more precise suspension system, the magazine says it is still "smooth and supple" and that this remains one of the Vanquish's "trump cards".

Autocar agrees, saying the small improvements to the chassis are "subtle" and the ride is mostly "composed and controlled". However, the Vanquish S can be "fidgety" on motorways and can feel harsh over cat's eyes on UK roads, although"not to the extent you'd complain about". 

Unlike the DB11's torque-laden twin-turbo V12 engine, the naturally aspirated motor needs "to get a huge shove in the back", but the Vanquish "rewards the effort" of a heavy right foot. 

It feels as exciting inside as its newer DB11 sibling, says Top Gear, although it is a "hard sell" given that customers will be buying a car "soon to expire". And it may consume more fuel than the DB11 and is "less flexible", but the small improvements on the previous model make it "the car the Vanquish should have always been". 

Prices

The asking price of £199,950 puts the Vanquish S in direct competition with the McLaren 650S and makes it about £40,000 cheaper than the Ferrari F12. However, buyers can expect that figure to rise when they pick optional extras. 

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