Steve’s Widebody 2012 V8 Vantage

Engine and Transmission

Steve’s car isn’t all show and no go - it’s got a few key upgrades to bring out the best of the 4.7L V8 engine.

The Exhaust system

Halfway through MY2010, Aston Martin changed the exhaust system to move the primary catalysts into the headers. Aston Martin then added a set of secondary cats to the place where the primaries had been on the previous exhaust system design. This was done to improve emissions to conform to increasingly stringent global standards.

The new exhaust manifolds don’t flow as well as they could due to the built-in cats, so Steve swapped his out for a set of equal-length headers from VelocityAP. To go that extra step, he also swapped out the secondary cats for a set of VelocityAP cat delete pipes. Those two mods combined means he’s running fully cat-less. Even so, he hasn’t had any issues with fuel or exhaust smell.

At the tail end of the exhaust system is a Quicksilver SuperSport+ muffler, making his car sound as loud as it looks.

VelocityAP engine tuning

To ensure everything runs smoothly, especially after removing all six catalysts from his car, Steve again turned to VelocityAP, this time for an engine tune. The tune was made to take advantage of the now catalyst-free exhaust system while also freeing up the engine’s factory-mapped restrictions like the slow throttle response. The result is an engine that behaves as it should have from the factory - responsive and powerful - and runs beautifully despite the gutted emissions.

Redpants oil catch can

Longevity of an engine is a key thing to keep in mind, especially when concerned with an engine as expensive as one from Aston Martin. Steve added a Redpants oil catch can kit to his V8 Vantage to keep the engine running as cleanly as possible for the long term. The catch can helps prevent oil vapors from getting into the intake manifold where they’d be mixed with the air and fuel going into the cylinders, burned in the combustion cycle, and left to gunk up the heads and catalysts with carbon buildup.

Upcoming plans

Still wanting to go as wild as possible, Steve plans to get a GMR supercharger kit when they become available and will add a twin-plate clutch and lightweight flywheel from VelocityAP to handle that extra power.

Want to check out more on Steve’s 2012 V8 Vantage? Click the banner below to go back to the main page for the build!