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2019 aston-martin Vantage

While it isn't the quickest or best-handling sports car on the market, Aston Martin's V8-powered Vantage seduces with its exquisitely beautiful sheet metal. It's brand-new for the latest model year.

Overview
The Vantage stands out from the more expensive DB11 it shares a platform with thanks to a softer design that's largely inspired by the DB10 showcased in the 2015 James Bond movie Spectre. It gets swept-back headlights positioned low on the front fascia and a grille that stretches nearly the entire width of the bumper.

The movie car's side gills carry over to the production version with a more muscular shape, as do the ultra-thin, wave-shaped tail lamps. Designers added an air diffuser in the rear bumper as a finishing touch. Overall, the look takes Aston's design language in a new, less Ford-like direction.

The Vantage is smarter than ever thanks to a surprisingly long list of standard and optional tech features, including an infotainment system borrowed from industrial partner Mercedes-Benz. The two passengers sit low in a cabin made from the kind of high-end materials you'd expect to find in a German luxury car, not a British sports car. Buyers with deep enough pockets can work with Aston Martin to customize nearly every part of the interior, including the trim, the stitching, and the upholstery. You're unlikely to find two identical examples.

The Vantage's heart
Power for the Vantage comes from a twin-turbocharged, 4.0-liter V8 engine borrowed from the Mercedes-AMG parts bin. It's the same unit found in the C63, the E63, and the GT, among other models. In this application it makes 503 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 505 pound-feet of torque from 2,000 to 5,000 rpm.

It spins the rear wheels through ZF's ubiquitous eight-speed automatic transmission. The drivetrain pelts the Vantage from zero to 60 mph in 3.6 seconds and on to a top speed that's electronically limited to 195 mph. Quick, precise steering gives the Vantage the kind of precision it needs to provide engaging handling; it's not just a grand tourer anymore.

Key competitors
Buyers in the market for an Aston Martin Vantage have several other options to choose from. It's in the same segment as the Porsche 911, the Audi R8, the Mercedes-Benz SL, and the Maserati GranTurismo.