Fall through the looking glass, go through the wardrobe, hit each of the buttons on the Wonkavator, or take the Hogwarts Express destination past the wizard school and there’s Aston Martin’s updated, five-door Rapide S sports vehicle. It’s engineered for an alternate reality where up remains, down is sideways, rabbits use top hats, and four-door exotic sports cars is the tradition.
It’s an inverted universe where practicality is the burden, beauty always trumps convenience, along with a 550-hp 5.9-liter V-12 will be considered acceptable and ordinary. The car is a pain in the butt, and wonderful for it.
First viewed as a concept back to 2006, the Rapide is an uncompromised figurine. It’s a spectacular sliver of the car, having a windscreen so brutally raked that it’s impossible to see a few overhead traffic lights from the driver’s seat, and a fastback roof that will have even Bilbo Baggins ducking to enter from the rear doors. But when it got into production back in 2010 plus promptly grew to become sales-proof, the large problem was that it wasn’t fast enough. On Narnia, 470 hp may seem like lots, however in Car and Driver’s community, which left the normal old Rapide in back of muggle-spec competitors just like the bulbous Porsche Panamera Turbo S. And Aston’s stated 5.0-second zero-to-60-mph functionality? These days, 5 seconds is enough time to beat Middle-earth.
So Aston has rewritten a Rapide fable using the form of the company’s latest AM11 V-12 that debuted on the latest Vanquish. A modified block is stuffed with the latest crank and capped by fresh cylinder heads together with variable timing on both the consumption and wear out cams along with a different “big wing” consumption a lot more inhaling through 0.2-inch-larger accelerator bodies. The re-machined ignition chambers stream improved by having a slightly increased compression proportion. All the thumps output nearly 550 horsepower at a screaming 6750 revoltions per minute and 457 pound-feet of top torque at 5000 rpm with, Aston claims, a lot better twisting production beneath four thousand rpm. There are no turbos, no superchargers, and no dark arts involved.
To deal with European pedestrian-protection criteria, Aston has mounted a engine 0.8 inch reduced in its bay?although redesigning forward grille and cover. Throw in LED lighting and also 20-inch tires within 245/35ZR-20 front and 295/30ZR-20 rear Bridgestone wheels, and this is a car which visually punches its own Golden Ticket. That observed, what stays essentially unchanged is Aston’s glue- and rivet-bonded aluminum space-frame structures, and also the rear-mounted six-speed automated transaxle.
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