Aston Martin

Aston Martin’s new Valkyrie hypercar, developed with Red Bull Racing and Cosworth, will deliver a massive 1160bhp total power output at a heady 10,500rpm, as well as 664lb ft at 6000rpm.

The company has released the full performance specs of the V12, and the Rimac-sourced hybrid system – the electric assistance makes up 160bhp and 207lb ft (enough to power a relatively fruity warm hatchback in its own right!).

CAR specs a Valkyrie at Aston Martin HQ

At the same time, Aston Martin also revealed an AMR Track Pack (see below) for those who are currently in the incredibly detailed process of specifying their own Valkyrie. Aston claims that the Track Pack can deliver around 8% quicker lap times for those looking to muster every last millisecond out of their track time, depending on track conditions.

What’s in the Track Pack? Well, there’s a new front clamshell and a whole new set of body panels for even better aero, superlight titanium brakes, magnesium wheels with carbon aero discs and a new suspension setup that includes updated dampers and roll bars, plus a 50mm decrease in ride height. The whole pack takes Aston Martin two days to swap the panels around.

See below for the headline specs on the new Aston Martin Valkyrie’s V12 (without hybrid figures added in):

  • Engine: 6.5-litre V12 with 65deg bank
  • Maximum power output: 1000bhp @ 10,500rpm
  • Peak torque output: 546lb ft @ 7000rpm
  • Redline: 11,100rpm
  • Engine weight: 206kg
  • Specific power output: 154bhp per litre – with no turbos!
  • Performance: Sub 3.0sec 0-62mph, 200mph+ top speed
  • Transmission: Seven-speed sequential, rear-wheel drive
  • Price: £2.5m (approx. without options)
  • Weight: 1050-1100kg (est)
  • On sale: First deliveries 2019 (all sold)

Designed with plenty of F1 experience and materials, the vital stats of the 6.5-litre V12 read more like something you’ll find on a pitlane walk at the British Grand Prix.

The engine might have no turbos, but there is a battery-electric boost system that’ll be divulged in due course. We already know the V12 is a fully stressed element of the chassis and Aston’s brief bears a wonderful simplicity: ‘To create the ultimate expression of the internal combustion engine.’

The all-new engine is a bespoke naturally aspirated 6.5-litre V12 from Cosworth. ‘The engine had to be bespoke,’ Adrian Newey says. ‘We spent a lot of time looking at the obvious alternatives to a normally aspirated V12 or a turbo V6 or V8. We came to the conclusion that. from a technical standpoint. a V12 was the best solution because although the engine itself is heavier it is actually a much easier package to install.

‘You haven’t got the turbos and the charge coolers to clutter up the back end of the car. It’s a naturally very well-balanced engine, and that means it can become a fully stressed member without putting excessive vibration into the chassis structure.’

‘I was concerned that if we mounted a V6 or V8 the vibration would be excessive and make it unpleasant from both a comfort and noise point of view in the cabin. When it comes to the acoustics, which is important, a V12 with a 12-into-1 exhaust system – which this car has – is a much more exciting sound than a turbocharged V6 or V8 will ever make.’

‘To get that much power, the naturally aspirated engine needs to rev very high,’ notes Aston Martin engineering chief David King. ‘To compensate, we’re also using electric hybrid power for extra low-speed torque.

Design

In many ways, the Valkyrie is more advanced than a Formula 1 car. It has active aerodynamics and active suspension including variable ride height (both proscribed by F1 rules). ‘These are all the things Adrian would love to do on an F1 car but can’t,’ says King.

‘Adrian is so dedicated to his ideas. But by the same measure, I didn’t want this car to look like an LMP1 car that was a slave to aero. It had to have an Aston Martin aesthetic. But we have achieved function and beauty together. And that’s what’s so important about this car.’

Reichman wanted a different language from Ferrari and McLaren. ‘The cooling comes from below and above, not from big side radiators. That gives a very different aesthetic.’ He describes the new look, as ‘agile, lithe, elemental and with a unique Aston Martin form language, and a real bloodline from the Valkyrie. It’ll be a lighter and more efficient supercar.

A spiritual successor to the McLaren F1

There are numerous parallels with the McLaren F1, the best supercar we have driven, and the single biggest advance in high-speed sports cars to date. Murray was dismissive of contemporary supercars and Newey today is similarly uncomplimentary.

He describes the current ‘state of the art’ hypercars – the McLaren P1, LaFerrari and Porsche 918 Spyder – as ‘big, clumsy and heavy. And it’s not just supercars. It’s the way the car industry has gone, from old Mini to new Mini, from old Ford GT40 to the newer Ford GT. I wanted to avoid this and keep the car compact. I wanted, in effect, a two-seat Formula 1 car in its underlying architecture.’

As with Murray and his McLaren, he told us he also wanted a car of two characters. ‘It will have a new level of performance on road or track compared with any other road car. At the same time, it’s comfortable if you’re stuck in traffic or cruising the motorway.’

Newey says they were hoping for 1000kg, but won’t quite achieve it. (So was Murray with the F1: he told us it was the only metric he failed to deliver.)  Naturally the car has a carbonfibre monocoque, bodywork and suspension, made using Formula 1-standard materials and construction.

Electronically-aided transmission

‘Only a small proportion of the power comes from the electric motor, sited within the powertrain. Any more, and the lithium-ion battery pack would be too heavy,’ King continues. The electric motor will help with pull-away from a standing start – so the clutch doesn’t get stressed – and will help smooth out gearshifts. It will also offer reverse gear.