Aston Martin wants to return to the highest rung of the automotive industry and will do so with the iconic Lagonda nameplate.
To most people, Aston Martin represents the best the automotive industry has to offer in terms of luxury. Now, while that’s not necessarily false, the company views itself a notch below the likes of Rolls-Royce and Bentley.
Aston has built its reputation on performance cars and not uber luxurious sedans and cruisers like its British counterparts, but it will now take a different approach to luxury.
In an interview with Australian website Motoring, company boss Andy Palmer stated:
“The direction I gave to [Aston design boss] Marek Reichmann was “look, Rolls-Royce is the epitome of luxury. It’s first class in a Boeing 777 — big and comfortable, we can’t compete with them. Give me Concorde — the best of speed; the finest of fastest cars.”
As for Lagonda, the brand historically competed with Rolls and Bentley but had been largely dormant, even becoming nothing more than a mere “pet name of Aston.” Making it a full-blown manufacturer with its own lineup of vehicles rather a single Aston Martin model should help it regain its stature and sort out any confusion regarding it.
Palmer confirmed that a sedan and a SUV will usher in Lagonda’s return, and neither will be simply a more luxurious variant of existing Astons. Although they will likely share engines and other mechanical components, all Lagonda models are expected to feature brand-specific designs and interiors.
Expected to see the first member of the new Lagonda lineup by 2020. How do you hope it turns out?
Tesla Model S Wins ‘World’s Greatest Drag Race’
Each year, Motor Trend holds a ‘World’s Greatest Drag Race’ featuring some of the fastest, most exciting sports cars, supercars and hypercars ever made. And this year, not a single one of them won.
The high-octane race part of the magazine’s “best driver’s car” competition and features the finalists doing a simultaneous quarter mile race against each other on an airstrip — the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, this time around.
As you would imagine, the list of contenders is what every car enthusiast’s dream is made of. See for yourself:
- Ferrari 488 GTB
- McLaren 570GT
- Porsche 911 Turbo S
- Mercedes-AMG GT R
- Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE
- Porsche 718 Cayman S
- Lexus LC 500
- Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio
- Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport
- Mazda MX-5 Miata RF
- Aston Martin DB11
- Nissan GT-R NISMO
The Mazda MX-5 RF, despite being in contention for the “best driver’s car” title, is grossly underpowered and was forced to watch from the sidelines, wishing the track was a little twistier. To make things interesting, Motor Trend decided to replace the Mazda that wished-it-could with the Tesla Model S P100D Ludicrous, a car we’ve all wanted to see frolic with the likes a Ferrari, McLaren and Porsche in terms of pure speed.
And — you guessed it — the relatively unassuming, electric-powered Model S, the heaviest car on the track, beat them all! In fact, it would have crushed the race if not for the Ferrari 488 GTB and Porsche 911 Turbo S being hot on its heels. It’s quite something to see…
Guess which car came in last?
Aston Martin DB11 Volante Is One Sexy Convertible
Aston Martin has unveiled the DB11 Volante, which joins the DB11 Coupe that arrived a year earlier.
Beautiful from just about every angle and billed as the ultimate open-top grand tourer, the Volante is powered by a new 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 that makes 503 horsepower (510 PS) and 513 lb-ft. of torque, which is put to better use thanks to the car having a bonded structure that is 57 pounds (26 kg) lighter yet five percent stiffer than its predecessor, the DB9 Volante.
An 8-speed automatic transmission sends power to the rear wheels. A more powerful V12 engine is expected to be added to the lineup at a later date.
Featuring the latest acoustic and insulation materials to reduce wind noise and provide protection against the elements, the DB11 Volante’s eight-layer fabric top can be lowered in 14 seconds and raised in 16 seconds remotely using the key fob or while driving at speeds of up to 31 mph.
The top’s more compact design has increased truck space by 20-percent increase in trunk space compared to the DB9 Volante’s.
The new Aston Martin DB11 Volante goes on sale in the first quarter of 2018 with a starting price of $216,495 in the United States.
Tom Brady is the New Face of Aston Martin
In what many would consider an odd pairing, Aston Martin has entered into a long-term partnership with Tom Brady to promote its vehicles. The football heavyweight is the new celebrity spokesman for the British automaker.
In case you’re not on the same page, that’s an American football player shilling for the most British automaker there is. We are truly living in an interesting world…
Brady has quarterbacked his team to five Super Bowl championship, so Aston Martin has a reason for selecting him:
“Tom is an inspirational leader and athlete who is clearly aligned with our view of Aston Martin. His performances on the football field — not just recently but throughout his career — are an inspiration for us all.”
But that could be said about any number of top athletes, notably those with a more international reach. The irony that Brady plays for the New England Patriots, a team whose mascot is a minuteman, rebels who incited the American Revolution against Britain, shouldn’t be lost on you.
But none of this matters to the man; it’s all about the money:
“Aston Martin exemplifies dedication to the craft of car making through a meticulous attention to detail. While 104 years of heritage are reflected in each hand-built car, with product from the DB11 to the Aston Martin Valkyrie, this brand is primed to excel for the next 100 years as well. As a long-time fan and driver I am honored to join the Aston Martin team at this special moment in the company’s history.”
As part of the partnership, Brady will curate his own Aston Martin based on the 2018 Aston Martin Vanquish S, twelve of which will be sold to the public. “Category of One: Why Beautiful Matters” is the title of his campaign.