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Aston Martin Valhalla: mid-engined Ferrari rival pictured testing

Testing is well underway for the new Aston supercar, which will leverage F1-derived tech when it hits the road next year

New pictures have been revealed of the Aston Martin Valhalla, the Gaydon firm’s mid-engined supercar, as its testing programme intensifies. Pictured at Aston Martin’s Stowe Circuit development centre at Silverstone, the new supercar is racking up test miles in gently camouflaged form ahead of production getting underway in 2024. 

These are the first official pictures of the Valhalla prototype during testing. Development mules are also understood to be testing on the road currently.

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It’s not been the smoothest, or quickest, of journeys to reality for the V8-hybrid Valhalla, which was first shown at the 2019 Geneva motor show. 

Limited to just 999 units, the Valhalla is Aston’s second mid-engined supercar after the ultra-exclusive Valkyrie. It’s powered by a new all-wheel-drive hybrid powertrain, combining a twin-turbocharged, flat-plane V8 engine with three electric motors. Total power output is stated by Aston Martin to be 998bhp.

Further cementing Aston Martin’s relationship with Mercedes, the Valhalla’s engine is understood to be related to the 4-litre twin-turbocharged V8 from AMG’s GT Black Series. The three electric motors comprise two at the front and another integrated into the gearbox, with the front motors enabling precise torque vectoring. To save weight, the front motors provide reverse drive rather than an extra ratio in the gearbox. 

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Aston Martin describes the Valhalla as being ‘at the forefront’ of its transition from internal combustion power to hybrid, and ultimately full electrification.

The mechanical specification has evolved since the Valhalla was initially announced with dual-motor hybrid assistance and 940bhp, and its projected 2.5sec 0-62mph time and 217mph top speed figures will likely be revised for the final car.

Leaning heavily on research and expertise from Aston’s Formula 1 team, the Valhalla is built around a carbonfibre tub with pushrod front suspension sporting inboard mounted springs and dampers to reduce unsprung mass.

This is complemented by a multi-link rear suspension system that uses Multimatic’s variable spring rate and adaptive sport valve damper units, allowing the Valhalla to provide an adjustable ride frequency to suit the road or track. As much as 90 per cent of the car’s dynamics have been honed on the simulator, with works F1 drivers Fernando Alonso and Lance Stroll having a hand in its development.

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A track mode will stiffen the chassis and lower the ride height, with the Valhalla’s CFD-formed bodywork designed with input from the F1 team’s aerodynamicists. Movable wings and a DRS system help optimise efficiency and downforce, with a peak of 600kg generated at 149mph.

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The Valhalla’s waist-high, low slung silhouette is visually distinct from any other series production Aston, and includes numerous elegantly integrated engineering touches. The roof-mounted air intake, for example, incorporates three openings – a central one to feed the V8 and two on either side to feed cooling air to the oil coolers for the engine and gearbox – and bleeds into top-mounted exhaust pipes.

Dihedral doors allow entry to a wider and larger cabin than that of the Valkyrie, the Valhalla having been designed as a usable, day-to-day supercar that happens to have hypercar performance. The environment screams motorsport, with carbon and alcantara clothing the doors, centre console, dashboard and steering wheel, and reclined bucket seats providing a race car style driving position. 

With an expected £500k+ price tag, Valhalla will remain an Aston for the few rather than the few more, but the tantalising mechanical specification and performance claims will raise more than a few eyebrows at Maranello and Woking.

Using a radical high-downforce design, the Valhalla has been initially predicted to achieve a 6 minute 30 second Nürburgring lap time, which would break the production car record currently held by the Mercedes-AMG One. We eagerly await to find out whether Aston will deliver on that claim.

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