Aston Martin Vulcan preview: hear its 800bhp V12

Updated with new video. 800bhp, a V12 and a £1.5 million price tag

The Aston Martin Vulcan promises to be the most extreme car to leave the marque’s Gaydon plant, ever. Purpose built for the racetrack, the Vulcan doesn’t need to conform to restrictive road legislation. Like the McLaren P1 GTR and LaFerrari FXX K before it, its focus is solely based on circuit performance.

These freshly revealed pictures confirm that the Vulcan will look as monstrous as the numbers on the spec sheet. Painted in green – naturally - the track car mixes the look of a proper GT racer with Aston Martin design concept. It’s sure to stand out on track.

But in a track car, looks are far from priority; performance is. Aston Martin has long been teasing us with snippets of information, but finally, we know all the details.

New teaser video

Ahead of its Goodwood Festival of Speed appearance, Aston Martin has released this teaser video of the Vulcan.

Engine

Pushed as far back into the bulkhead as possible is a 7-litre V12 engine. Developed in conjunction with Aston Martin’s racing arm, the front mid-mounted 12-cylinder produces over 800bhp.

Aston Martin Racing has extensive knowledge of producing high performance engines capable of surviving the tough environments of 24-hour racing. The 7-litre unit found under the Vulcan’s bonnet can therefore trace much of its technical strengths back to the brand’s Le Mans racing efforts.

Video

Gearbox

Power is sent to the rear wheels through a rear mid-mounted Xtrac six-speed sequential gearbox, ensuring optimum weight-distribution. 

Aston Martin claims that power-to-weight actually exceeds that of its thoroughbred GTE Vantage racers.

Chassis 

The Vulcan features a carbonfibre monocoque and body, the latter being constructed by long-term manufacturing partner Multimatic.

Handling the car’s 800+bhp will be a magnesium propshaft, an integrated limited-slip differential and carbonfibre driveshafts.

Out back is a pair of massive 345/30 19-inch rear wheels wrapped in Michelin slicks (wets in the rain), attached to race-spec pushrod suspension with anti-dive geometry.

Multimatic has also developed Dynamic Suspension Spool Valve adjustable dampers and anti-roll bars for both front and rear, enabling owners to fine-tune setup to suit specific tracks and their individual driving styles.

Driver adjustable traction control will also feature several stages of adjustment, accessible from the cockpit.

Aerodynamics 

The car’s inclusion of a GT style rear wing and rear-diffuser confirm air will be worked to enhance the Vulcan's performance, so much so, that Aston claims the Vulcan will produce 1300kg of downforce at just shy of 200mph.

Up-front are guiding veins and devices to channel air around the car, while a smooth floor and sculpted body will help reduce drag where it’s not needed.

Brakes

Carbon ceramic brake discs of 380mm (front) and 360mm (rear) will be squeezed by Brembo racing calipers. A driver adjustable anti-lock braking system will offer progressive levels of assistance in maximising the brakes’ heavy bite. 

Price 

Just 24 Vulcans will be produced, a number chosen as a tribute to Aston Martin’s long involvement with 24-hour racing. As such, it’ll cost £1.5million (plus local taxes) to purchase Gaydon’s most extreme creation.

Aston Martin says an almost infinite number of colours and trim options are offered to buyers, who can order the car through its VIP sales programme.

Experience programme

That seven figure price tag comes with Aston Martin’s fast-track training. Such is the level of the Vulcan’s performance, that Aston’s offering full track tuition and technical support.

Le Mans winner Darren Turner will head up the tutor list, using cars like the V12 Vantage S, One-77 and Vantage GT4 to demonstrate and pass on track expertise.

Buyers will get to practice on the same world-class simulators as Aston Martin Racing’s drivers, enabling them to hone their skills and improve their pace before even stepping foot in the car.

Aston Martin’s CEO, Dr Andy Palmer, says: ‘the Aston Martin Vulcan is, by its very nature, a rare and thrilling supercar. Designed and engineered to deliver a genuinely bespoke driving experience that draws on our rich heritage, this car tailors its power and handling to both the capabilities of the driver and the characteristics of the track.’

‘A sports car for true sports car lovers, I believe the Aston Martin Vulcan – and the unique ownership programme that sits behind it – sets a whole new standard in the ultra-high luxury supercar class.’

The car will make its public debut at the Geneva motor show in March. Check back here for the car's full specifications when they're released in the coming weeks.

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