Earlier in July 2023, Aston Martin celebrated its 110th birthday, and in a massive gesture of self-congratulation, it marked the occasion by announcing the Valour; an all-new, retro-styled supercar, which draws on the original Aston Martin V8 Vantage (a car widely-considered to be the first British muscle car), and the oh-so-slightly-mad Victor it released in 2020.
A limited edition car, only 110 Valours will be made, and each one is estimated to cost between £1,000,000 - £1,500,000 GBP. The British carmaker has also confirmed that the Valour will be powered by an in-house developed, twin-turbocharged, 705 brake horsepower, 5.2-litre V12, which is located up-front, and paired with an old school, six-speed manual gearbox, and a rear-wheel drive drivetrain.
Simply lovely, we’ll sure you agree. There’s also more good news…
Miles Nurenburger, Aston Martin’s Design Director, says that the Valour will be “taut, precise” and be “gloriously unapologetic; an old school brute refined and reimagined through the lens of 2023.”
However, the Valour will go on sale in the final quarter of 2023, so in the meantime, you’ll have to make do with building your own via Aston Martin’s car configurator.
Make no mistake, the Valour is an important car for Aston Martin. It’s a celebration of the brand’s continued survival against some serious odds over the last 110 years. Similarly, the modern(ish) Aston Martins below have proved equally important in keeping the brand and its defiant spirit alive over the last three decades.
Here’s to many more.
Aston Martin DB7 Vantage
Released in 1994, the DB7 heralded a new era for Aston Martin. Then under the ownership of Ford, the DB7 needed to be a success for the British carmaker. Otherwise it simply wouldn’t live on. During its development period, money - not for the first time in Aston Martin history - was tight. Very tight, in fact, and the DB7 became a bit of a parts bin special courtesy of other car manufacturers owned by the Blue Oval: the rear lights were borrowed from a Mazda 323, the chrome door handles were first found on the MX5, and the interior door mirror switches (along with plenty of other interior switchgear) were lifted from various Ford models. No surprises then, that early DB7s suffered from questionable build quality. None of this mattered, though, especially when the Ian Callum-designed DB7 looked and sounded as exquisite as it did. The supercharged six-cylinder 3.2L cars were underwhelming to the extent that Aston Martin took them out of production in 1999, but the naturally-aspirated 5.9L V12s more than made up for that with their sonorous, high-pitched soundtrack. By the time DB7 production stopped in 2004, around 7,000 of them had been made and the brand’s survival into the 21st century was secured.
Aston Martin DBS V12
In 2007, the DBS name was revived for what was then the most driver-focused Aston Martin yet. An in-your-face version of the DB7-replacing DB9, the DBS was engineered to be a traditional Aston Martin GT, albeit one created with driving thrills at its core. Over the DB9, the DBS received a wider, more aggressive body kit, a specially-developed lightweight aluminium chassis, adaptive suspension, carbon-ceramic brakes, and a standard manual gearbox. During its 2017 - 2012 lifespan, the motoring press mentioned the DBS in the same breath as the Ferrari 599 and the 997-era Porsche 911 Turbo. Aston Martin had succeeded. The heart of the DBS was a hand-built 48-valve, 6.0-litre V12 which made it good for a top speed of 191 miles per-hour and a 0-62 mph time of 4.3 seconds. Very much a product of its time, the DBS still suffered - albeit slightly - from the aftermath of Aston Martin’s then-Ford ownership thanks to smatterings Ford and Volvo knobs and pulleys in the cabin. Perhaps most bizarre of all, is what looks to be a dot matrix readout on the speedometer reading “Power. Beauty. Soul” upon startup… whatever that means. Nonetheless, the DBS remains an important car in the brand’s contemporary history as it showed that Britain was more than capable of going toe-to-toe with Italy and Germany.
Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake
Anyone who loves cars loves a wagon, and even non-car enthusiasts love an Aston Martin. Them’s just the rules, and it’s this, then - the Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake - that’s the ultimate manifestation of the two. Between 2018 and 2019, Zagato made just 99 of these highly-exclusive cars. What’s more, when you scratch beneath the surface, it’s not entirely a Vanquish, either. Whilst it just shares its 580bhp, 6.0L V12 and its front end with its namesake, that’s where the similarities stop, as the rear is taken from the Aston Martin Rapide super-saloon the body is crafted entirely from carbon fibre. Despite its stretched dimensions, the Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake has just two seats, meaning it’ll not be upsetting the family Volvo for tip runs. Given the leather and rare material-trimmed interior, it’s probably not great as a pet transporter either. However, it will do 205mph, and you’ll be part of a very exclusive club; albeit one that comes with a £650,000 entrance fee.
Aston Martin V8 Vantage
Despite having one of the longest-standing names in car history, the latest-gen Vantage represented yet another significant turning point in Aston Martin’s colourful history. Released in 2018, this all-new and very pretty version of Aston Martin’s “entry-level” sports car was the first Vantage to benefit from Aston Martin’s technical tie-up with Mercedes-Benz. Like the larger, more GT-orientated DB11, the V8-powered cars were powered by a twin-turbocharged, 4.0L AMG power plant, whilst the limited edition V12 Vantage received a 5.2L Aston Martin-made unit capable of almost 700bhp. In addition to the tried-and-tested AMG mechanicals, the all-aluminium, Marek Reichmann-styled Vantage looked every inch the contemporary Aston Martin with design cues taken from the track-only Vulcan and the big screen special, the one-off DB10. Like the DB7 that came over 20 years prior, this was very much a car that would lead Aston Martin into a new era.
Aston Martin Victor
One thing that separates Aston Martin from its peers, is that it’s not afraid to be a bit silly every so often, which is exactly what happened here. A one-off car created by Aston Martin’s Q Advanced Operations division, the Victor is named after Victor Gauntlett, the British industrialist who owned the brand from 1980 to-1991. Amongst other things, the wonderfully-named Gauntlett returned Bond to the Aston Martin, revived its relationship with Zagato, and laid the foundations for the life-saving sale to Ford. Costing a staggering £5,000,000, the Victor shares its 7.3L V12, its carbon fibre body, and its monocoque with the One-77 and the Vulcan. However, the Victor’s engine has been tweaked by Cosworth to produce 836bhp, which is then sent through the rear wheels by a six-speed manual gearbox. If this wasn’t brutal enough, the Victor’s styling draws on the original V8 Vantage, and the ‘Muncher’, a specially-developed, twin-turbocharged DBS used by Aston Martin for its assault on the 1977 24 Hours of Le Mans. Ludicrously expensive, brutal, and really quite mad, the Victor is Aston Martin at its brilliant best.
Aston Martin DB12
Described by Top Gear as “the most accomplished Aston Martin we’ve driven in years”, the DB12 replaced the DB11 in 2023, and it has the Porsche 911 Turbo, Ferrari Roma, and the Bentley Continental GT firmly in its sights. The first Aston Martin flagship to be launched under the tutelage of its current owner, Lawrence Stroll, the DB12 is still based on the DB11. It is, however, 80% newer than its predecessor inside and out. Due to emissions regulations, the DB12 is the first top-tier Aston Martin GT in history to not be offered with a V12. Under the hood thumps a twin-turbocharged 4.0L V8 sourced from Mercedes AMG, which produced 671 bhp and tops out at 202 mph. The DB12 also benefits from a much-needed upgrade under the skin. The suspension has been upgraded significantly to make the car stiffer, whilst the interior has been ergonomically reconfigured, with a 911-esque raised centre console, and plenty of clearly-designated switchgear. The touchscreens have also been developed entirely by Aston Martin, and with their crisp graphics and responsive loading times, they are a far-cry from the toe-curlingly cringey and clunky “Power. Beauty. Soul” offerings from the mid-to-late 2000s. Since he took over Aston Martin in 2020, Stroll has been on the end of some harsh words in his handling of the brand, particularly in relation to the running of the Aston Martin Formula 1 Team. Yet let’s not forget that it’s under Stroll that Aston Martin has launched the DBX and now the DB12 to critical acclaim. If things continue like this, then don’t bet against Aston Martin delivering on Stroll’s ambitious target of launching seven new cars by 2028.
Aston Martin Valkyrie
Once upon a time - well, as far back as 2020 - Max Verstappen wasn’t intent on writing the F1 record books, and Aston Martin didn’t even have a Formula 1 team. Instead, the British carmaker was the title sponsor of Red Bull Racing, and a result of that sponsorship deal was this,the Valkyrie - a hybrid hypercar developed by Aston Martin, Red Bull, and F1 design guru, Adrian Newey. Despite a lengthy gestation period dating back to 2015, the Valkyrie finally arrived as a production car in 2023, and is driven by a 6.5L Cosworth V12, which has been mated to a separate electric motor making 160bhp, and a Rimac KERS hybrid battery system. The result? Enough power to move the earth’s crust thanks to 1,139 bhp in a car weighing 1,355 kilograms. The Valkyrie isn’t perfect. After all, it was developed during another financially dire period for Aston Martin. It is, however, exquisite to behold, and it represents an on-road manifestation of one of the greatest minds the world of motorsport and automotive engineering has ever seen.
If you’re interested in adding an Aston Martin to your existing car collection, then click these yellow words to browse through the 200+ Aston Martin models we have listed!