The Aston Martin Vantage has everything you want in a good sports car: drop-dead gorgeous looks, a raucous twin-turbocharged V8, a posh interior, and even a sporty seven-speed manual option. The only thing missing from the current model is a removable roof – well, not anymore. Today the Aston Martin Vantage Roadster debuts, and it drops the "Volante" name for the first time.
With the same twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 as the coupe, the Aston Martin Vantage Roadster churns out 503 bhp (375 kilowatts) and 505 pound-feet (685 Newton-metres) of torque. All that power travels through an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission to the rear wheels, giving the Vantage Roadster a 60 mile-per-hour (96 kilometers per hour) sprint of 3.7 seconds. That's just a tick slower than the coupe, which gets there in 3.5 seconds.
Thanks to a unique and lightweight "Z-Fold" roof mechanism, the Vantage Roadster gains just 60 kilograms (132 pounds) over its fixed-roof counterpart and has the fastest roof operation of any automatically folding convertible on sale today. It takes 6.7 seconds to put the roof flat, and 6.8 seconds to raise it back up again, all at speeds of up to 31 miles per hour (50 kilometres per hour). And speaking of speed, the Vantage Roadster can hit 190 mph flat out (306 kmh).
But the Vantage Roadster can do more than just straight-line speed. The droptop gets additional bracing and borrows the same adaptive suspension, torque vectoring, and electronic rear differential as the coupe. Not to mention it still offers the choice of three driving modes: Sport, Sport + and Track.
"Convertible sports cars are often seen as compromised when compared to their Coupe equivalents," Matt Becker, Aston Martin Chief Engineer says. "But the Vantage Roadster remains absolutely dedicated true to its mission of delivering precise, agile and expressive handling dynamics combined with stonking straight-line performance. And of course, there's the added dimension of driving a great-sounding sports car with the roof down."
For 2021, the entire Vantage range gets an update. Celebrating 70 years since the nameplate debuted, both the convertible and coupe comes with an optional "vane" grille – or, horizontal slats that pay homage to classic Astons – as well as a range of new wheel and color options, and now an optional seven-speed manual throughout the range. Last year Aston limited the seven-speed manual to the AMR model exclusively.
The 2021 Aston Martin Vantage coupe starts at £114,850, while the Vantage Roadster costs £126,950. Both versions are already available for pre-order, but deliveries for the Vantage Roadster should kick off in quarter three of 2020.