New Vantage road car forms basis of Aston Martin Racing’s 2018 WEC challenger
Developed in parallel with the new Vantage road car
Development car has already completed 13,000km of testing, including two 30hr tests
Three new key technical partners: Alcon brakes; Öhlins suspension; Michelin tyres
Established AMR drivers joined by British star Alex Lynn
Aston Martin revealed the new Vantage: a dynamic successor to the biggest-selling road car in the British marque’s history. In an unprecedented synchronised launch, Aston Martin Racing revealed the new Vantage GTE: the spectacular new FIA World Endurance Championship challenger poised to replace the team’s most successful competition car of all-time, the multiple Le Mans-winning V8 Vantage GTE.
Built to comply with the FIA’s strict GTE class regulations, the new Vantage GTE takes the road car’s core design and dynamic capabilities to a whole new level through extensive optimisation of the powertrain, chassis and aerodynamics. Designed and engineered in-house at Aston Martin Racing’s headquarters in Banbury, the project is led by Technical Director Dan Sayers, who also led the design and development of the current V8 Vantage GTE – the car credited with 36 of the team’s 50 international race victories, including two Le Mans 24 Hour class wins.
Though the new Vantage road car has only just been launched, development of the new Vantage GTE race car is well advanced, with more than 13,000km of testing completed, including a successful 30-hour run at the Spanish circuit of Navarra. The car has also been through a rigorous durability programme at the notoriously rough Sebring circuit in Florida. All of Aston Martin Racing’s current drivers have contributed to the test programme.
Reliability has been exceptional straight out of the box, while the drivers have reported the car is easier to control on the limit than its predecessor – something that will make the Vantage GTE especially attractive to competitors in the GTE Am class where top-level amateurs race alongside professional team mates. Together with Aston Martin Racing’s engineers, the factory drivers have worked hard to optimise the drivability and performance of the base Mercedes-AMG 4.0-litre turbocharged V8 engine, that has been developed for use in the Vantage GTE application by Aston Martin Racing.
Aston Martin Racing is working with new technical partners: Alcon for the braking system, Öhlins for the suspension and Michelin for a bespoke tyre programme to maximise the performance of the Vantage GTE. Also, the in-house Aston Martin Design team, led by Chief Creative Officer Marek Reichman have taken their intimate knowledge of the road Vantage styling and amplified it for the WEC version. The result is an extreme and exciting evolution of an already aggressive road car design – a lesson in Aston Martin’s ethos of pure form and function.
With a new car to develop, Aston Martin Racing has kept its highly experienced and successful driver line-up. This year’s Le Mans 24 Hours GTE Pro class winners Darren Turner and Jonny Adam have been retained, as have the Danish duo and 2016 FIA WEC GTE Pro world champions, Nicki Thiim and Marco Sørensen. In addition, AMR has recruited ex-GP2 race winner and now Formula E racer Alex Lynn. Further driver announcements will be forthcoming.
Aston Martin Racing is also proud to announce a range of partners who will support the team throughout the 2018/19 season.
Hackett London remains the long-term Official Clothing Partner for Aston Martin Racing, supplying the team with all technical wear throughout each race weekend and range of Aston Martin Racing clothing in stores worldwide. Likewise, Immun’Age, who produce immune system boosting natural papaya food supplements, continue their association with the British marque.
The team are also proud to confirm that Total will continue as Official Lubricant Partner. After joining the team at the beginning of 2016, Aston Martin Racing and Total have together delivered one world championship and a win at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, underlining the success of the relationship.
Aston Martin Racing is also proud to announce a range of new partners to the fold. One of the world’s most prestigious Hotel brands, Waldorf Astoria, becomes the team’s Official Hotel Partner, while renowned audio specialists Beats, joins as Official Audio Partner.
Aston Martin Racing Technical Director, Dan Sayers said of the 2018 Vantage GTE: “Designing and developing this new car has been an extremely satisfying process. We’ve collaborated closely with the Aston Martin’s Gaydon headquarters to develop the road and race cars in parallel. Attention to detail has been a priority at every step of this process and we’ve made big improvements in each area of the car. We’ve spent every second optimising the design right until the build of our test car, which has paid dividends during our current testing schedule. This project has been one of the most intensive but also rewarding of my career so far