Aston Martin Vantage review – ride and handling

Fast and fun Vantage is very different to its predecessor, but fun, and faster than ever

Evo rating
Price
from £120,900

Ride and handling

If you've followed our Vantage reviews from the start you'll know we had some big reservations over the early cars. The good news is that each Vantage we've driven since has been a vastly better effort, and a genuine alternative to 911s and R8s. While it couldn't be considered perfect, its ability to pair entertaining dynamics with long-legged cruising ability feels, quite appropriately, very Aston Martin.

Those imperfections? Well, for starters it feels big. At 2153mm it’s around 200mm wider than a Porsche 911 Turbo, a fact that is exacerbated by the Vantage’s low-slung driving position, high-set dashboard and slimline windscreen, all of which combine to create a feeling of claustrophobia. The first few miles brings the intermittent ‘thud-thud’ of cats eyes as you acclimatize to the Aston’s size.

The ride quality isn't perfect either, with a a slightly stiff-legged low speed gait, and an occasional feeling at higher speeds that the suspension has quite a lot to deal with when asked not just to keep the car's weight in check, but also handle particularly taxing bumps and compressions.

The rest is all good news. Firstly, that ride settles down in all other scenarios, and is particularly calming on the motorway, where it's among the more relaxed of its peers. The suspension does, to its credit, also endow the Vantage with good body control through corners, and stiffer modes can ramp this up where required. Ultimately it's still not as composed as say, the aforementioned 911 or R8, but the car's movements are always predictable. Traction is a marked improvement on earlier cars, the rear axle now taking the turbocharged V8's power in its stride (though you can't take too many liberties with 505lb ft to play with).

The steering is also a highlight, being both meatily weighted and naturally geared. It’s not exactly dripping with feedback, but there’s strong front-end bite from the wide front axle, which means you can attack corners with real gusto. With near 50/50 weight distribution and quick steering, the Aston’s line through a bend can be altered at will with a prod of the accelerator pedal – there’s real entertainment to be had here. It feels like a proper sports car, and an engaging one at that.

Most Popular

Car pictures of the week
Maserati MC20
Maserati MC20 coupe

Car pictures of the week

In this week’s car pictures from issue 294, we look at the highlights from Jethro Bovingdon’s drive in the highly anticipated Maserati MC20
21 Jan 2022
Porsche 911 GT3 Touring 2022 review – pairing the magnificent 992 GT3 experience to a more subtle audience
Porsche 911 GT3 Touring eCoty – front tracking
Porsche 911 GT3

Porsche 911 GT3 Touring 2022 review – pairing the magnificent 992 GT3 experience to a more subtle audience

There are few, if any, more rewarding, engaging or intense experiences for those in pursuit of the thrill of driving
7 Jan 2022
Peugeot 9X8 Le Mans Hypercar shown in new images
Peugeot 9X8 Le Mans Hypercar
Peugeot

Peugeot 9X8 Le Mans Hypercar shown in new images

Peugeot Sport’s new wingless Le Mans racer gears up for its competition debut later this year
18 Jan 2022