Rich's 2007 V8 Vantage

[Under construction]

The basics

My first Aston Martin, I bought this car in 2011 from a couple in Tampa, FL, who are now extremely close friends. It had been used to develop and test the prototypes for RSC Tuning's products way back in the day (that company has since changed hands, and one of the lead guys from the original group, Stuart, moved on to create VelocityAP).

2007 Aston Martin V8 Vantage
Mercury Silver paint
Phantom Grey leather with silver stitching
4.3L V8 with manual transmission

Current weight reduction: ~170 lbs
Current horsepower: 430+ bhp
(Actual weights and dyno results coming soon!)

Modifications

Redpants oil catch can
Redpants air box deletes
Redpants lightweight battery kit
Redpants widepants-fitment 19" BC Forged RZ05 wheels
Redpants TPMS fault defeat
Wilwood 2-piece brake rotors
Hawk HPS 5.0 brake pads
Motul RBF660 brake fluid
Motul Gear 300 75w90 gear oil
Motul X-Power 8100 10w60 engine oil
VelocityAP twin-plate clutch and lightweight flywheel
VelocityAP tune
VelocityAP headers with EGR delete
RSC Tuning high-flow cats (prototypes)
RSC Tuning muffler (prototype)
H&R lowering springs
VCollection carbon fiber front lip
Aston Martin Racing GT4 front bumper fascia
Aston Martin Racing GT3 lightweight front bumper beam and mesh grille
Aston Martin Racing GT4 carbon fiber side sills
Aston Martin carbon fiber fender vent strakes
Aston Martin V12 Vantage hood
Aston Martin V12 Vantage S 'dogleg' mesh hood vents
Aston Martin ROW rear bumper
Aston Martin N420 carbon fiber rear diffuser
Aston Martin alcantara steering wheel and shift knob
Aston Martin carbon fiber gearshift surround
Shorty antenna
LED map lights
 

The Build

The goal of this car is to bring out the sporty qualities of the V8 Vantage. That means more power and less weight. It's hard to explain the benefits of weight reduction to people because the automotive industry markets relentlessly with power output and mostly-meaningless 0-60s times. Not only that, but weight loss is a progressive route without a "magic bullet" modification to gain performance. There are modifications that will be more noticeable than others, but generally weight loss takes a lot of incremental changes to make a difference in a car.

This car bucks the usual trend for an Aston Martin. It's low, it's loud, and it's covered in race car parts. The front bumper fascia and carbon fiber side sills are from the original Vantage GT4. The standard front bumper armature was removed and replaced by an extremely lightweight aluminum bar. The armature supports quite a bit of the front end's components: the headlights, the intake duct inlet, the oil cooler, the tow hook, the grille, and the safety latch for the hood. By removing it, numerous changes had to be made. Prodrive (Aston Martin Racing's main supplier) supplied the mesh grille, tow strap, and headlight support brackets, but custom brackets had to be made to support the oil cooler and the intake duct inlet had to go. Since the inlet was not longer able to be used, I took out that as well as the ducts and even the air boxes. The engine intake filters are now open to the elements and supported by air box delete brackets. The inlet, ducts, and N400 air boxes add up to 11 lbs 2.3 oz, which have been replaced by 3D-printed brackets weighing only a few ounces!

Another reason for removing the air boxes is that the GT4 front bumper fascia has brake cooling duct inlets that take up space where the air boxes would be. I've been using brake cooling ducts that source air via NACA ducts in the front undertray, but I'll be making new brake cooling ducts routed from the front bumper fascia to replace the current setup.

I had been running a set of BC Forged RT50 wheels in Redpants fitment for a couple years on this car, but now have a set of widepants-fitment RZ05 wheels on it. Long story short, the RZ05s were meant to go on our red project car. But I put them on my grey one to get some pics and.... well... everyone, myself included, fell in love with the look. So they stayed.

Before

Before

After

After

I still absolutely love the classic-but-modern look of the RT50s, but the RZ05s just freshen up the car so much and are a better match for its current aggressive styling. I mean, look at this thing!