The Aston Martin Victor, a privately commissioned one-off car I only just found out about from British friends on social media, might be the coolest vehicle to come out in 2020. I mean, come on: Weird multi-era styling, cashmere headliner, V12… manual transmission?!
The more I look at the more jarring it is. I love it. I mean, I really love it. It’s so delightfully different!
Some British publications and show-goers got to see the Victor in person this week at the Concours of Elegance at Hampton Court Palace (where people don’t seem too concerned about the coronavirus based on social media pics) but an Aston Martin spokesperson told me there weren’t plans to put out an official press release about the Victor as the owner wants to keep the car “low key.”
Clearly not too low key or the car wouldn’t have been wheeled out at a show, but I have to admit it’s kind of more fun to be surprised by something like this than spending weeks dissecting teaser photos.
I guess AM wasn’t too worried about hyping it anyway, if it’s really only making one, I guess it’s sold out! I did ask what the mystery client paid for the privilege of being the only person to own Aston’s most powerful manual-shift supercar, but the company’s people unsurprisingly declined to share.
Anyway, whoever spent a mint on this elegant monster bought more than just bragging rights. The car is unique, which gets harder to pull off all the time. A document Aston’s rep sent me describes the Victor as “inspired by the Aston Martin V8 Vantage of the ’70s and ’80s.” More specifically: “…the iconic Aston Martin V8 Vantage of the 1970s and ’80s and the ’70s DBS V8 that was developed to race in the 24 Hours of Le Mans as the RHAM/1.”
Here’s what they’re talking about:
Yeah, I was a little confused about how “’70s and ’80s” vibes could be used to describe the same car but I get it after looking at the image. It’s like, designed in the ’70s, modified in the ’80s.
It’s pretty cool the way this aesthetic was ported to a whole new look, and the oily bits (Britishisms are allowed when discussing a custom Aston Martin) are rifled from the coolest parts bin ever:
- Naturally aspirated 7.3-liter V12 from the One-77, tuned by Cosworth to a claimed 836 brake horsepower and 599 lb-ft of torque.
- Six-speed manual transmission made by Graziano (The UK division of axle authority Dana) with a “bespoke motorsports clutch” that would probably cost more to replace than I’ve spent on car maintenance in my life so far.
- 380mm front, 360mm rear Brembo CMM-R carbon ceramic brakes.
- Inboard springs and dampers from the track-only Aston Martin Vulcan.
- Worked on by the team bringing the Valkyrie hypercar to life.
- Finished in “Pentland Green” and satin carbon fiber with a Forest Green interior sewn by fancy leather outfit Conker Bridge of Weir which used cashmere on the headliner. Also: The solid walnut(!) dashboard is Crown cut, whatever that means, and matches the wood shift knob.
I don’t usually get excited about ultra-elite supercars I’ll never see in the skin but I have to say, this thing just sounds incredible. The design is borderline bizarre, but I dig it. And the high-performance/luxury clashes came out really well. At least, based on what we can see in these photos.
Will the world ever see this car again or what? In case we don’t, I’m just going to dump the whole stack of official photos I got. Take your time with these, there’s a lot going on.