The V8 Vantage is the fastest car of Aston Martin's V8 grand tourer series from the 1970s. It differs from regular models by having a high-performance V8 engine that gives the car a top speed of 170 mph (273 km/h), making it similar in performance to early supercars such as the Lamborghini Miura P400.
The V8 Vantage was manufactured until 1989 and replaced by the Aston Martin Virage which would later receive a Vantage performance model.
If Britain can be said to never have truly entered the muscle car fray, then the Aston Martin V8s that prowled the UK starting in the late 1960s are surely the next best thing. Unabashedly aggressive in appearance, and equally savage in sheer grunt, the V8 Vantage also offers something that no American muscle car of the time could ever equal: authentic European luxury and exclusivity. For in addition to its performance credentials, spending time in a V8 Vantage is to coddle yourself in soft leather while admiring the real wood paneling. Yet the power on tap is the real story: the none-too-subtle hood bulge barely conceals the 5.3-liter V8, whose hot cams and revised carburetion allowed for an unprecedented 170 mph top speed, at which point the standard rear decklid spoiler becomes important. The Vantage’s soundtrack of burbles and bellows means that at any speed the mighty V8 stirs something primal in a driver’s soul that must be felt to be properly understood.
The V8 Vantage is powered by a 5.3 litre V8 using a double overhead camshaft valvetrain along with four twin-choke carburetors. Its engine has a compression ratio of 10.2:1, and produces 380 hp (283 kW) and 380 ft·lb (515 N·m) of torque that make 0 to 60 mph sprints in 5.4 seconds and top speeds higher than 170 mph (273 km/h) possible.
To cope with the high amount of power, a five-speed manual transmission by ZF is fitted to the car along with body modifications consisting of a revised front bumper and rear spoiler to create more downforce for greater stability at high speeds. Its chassis, which has an almost neutral weight distribution, received a front anti-roll bar and four-wheel disc brakes for increased rigidity and more stopping power, respectively.
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