Aston Martin recently released their 2016 model year upgrades for their Vantage and Vantage S models. Reason enough for us to take the 2016 Aston Martin V12 Vantage S Roadster out for a spin and see what it is like!
The Aston Martin V12 Vantage S Roadster is a soft top convertible with a large and powerful V12 engine. In typical Aston Martin style it pairs unique style with incredible sound. At the heart of this package lies a 6.0 liter V12 engine that produces 573hp and 620Nm of torque. As the fastest open-top Aston Martin ever built the 2016 V12 Vantage S Roadster rockets from 0-60 mph in just 3.9 seconds and tops out at a very respectable 323 km/h.
Compared to a ‘regular’ V12 Vantage Roadster the ‘S’ model puts down 55bhp and 20Nm of torque more. Additionally the torque delivery of the S model is more direct and aggressive providing faster acceleration and sportier behaviour through the gears.
For the 2016 model year Aston Martin equipped all V12 Vantage S Roadsters – and all other Vantage and Rapide S models – with the AMi II Infotainment system. The system is completely overhauled and includes new features like the Power & Torque display that shows you your current power and torque numbers and the maximum in the last minutes. It also shows your tire pressure and temperatures.
The new infotainment system is a big step up from the previous system and both looks and works much better although the controls are still a bit of a puzzle. Along with the new infotainment system Aston Martin has launched a range of trim packs that make it easier for customers to personalize their vehicles with a range of trims, leather and stitching. Additionally there are two new wheels available and a range of new interior and exterior colors. Bluetooth, navigation and cruise control is now standard on all Vantage models.
After the brief introduction about what is new on the 16 model year Vantage we received the keys to a stunning orange V12 Vantage S Roadster. The roads around Aston Martin’s Nurburgring test center served as the perfect location for our 2016 Aston Martin V12 Vantage S Roadster review. During the week there are not that many people in the area and we found some stunning empty roads to put the V12 Vantage S through its paces.
The moment you slide the heavy Aston Martin key into the slot in the dashboard and press it all the way in to wake the engine a spine tingling roar fills the cabin. Controls for the gearbox are also located on the center console and after a tap on D we are ready to go. The automated manual gearbox can run in both full auto mode as a manual mode in which you can change gear with the paddles behind the steering wheel.
We drive the first kilometer in auto mode but as soon as the first swooping bend dooms up in front of us I have to use the paddles. Since it is an automated manual the gearbox responds is not as fast as that of other cars in this segmnt. This is a drawback and certainly when having to turn around during our photo shoot became a bit of an annoyance. Luckily Aston Martin has partnered with AMG and this promises a lot of good for the next generation Aston Martins.
The Sport button on the dashboard transforms the V12 Vantage S Roadster to even more of a racer with faster throttle responds and an even better sound. Driving through the German country side with the roof down and the fantastic tune created by the Aston V12 we realize life is good. Locals stare at the orange sportscar as we pass by.
The Aston Martin V12 Vantage S handles better than the regular V12 Vantage but the weight is still against it in tight bends and bumpy roads. Here the V8 Vantage N430 is more at home, the V12 Vantage S Roadster however comes in its element at faster stretches of road and the German autobahn. Its tremendous torque keeps pulling all the way up to its top speed of 200 mph+.
The interior is a bit of a dilemma; on one hand there is the beautiful hand crafted Aston Martin leather and stunning design elements like the glass key and the gearbox controls. On the other hand the steering wheel and some of the controls and switches look dated. Despite this the drivers seat of the V12 Vantage S Roadster is still a pleasant place to be and the seats offer sufficient support and comfort.
The 2016 Aston Martin V12 Vantage S Roadster is a stunning style icon that provides excellent fun and a hard to top sound. The new infotainment update and standard equipment raises the daily usability of the V12 Vantage S Roadster but the controls are sometimes a bit confusing. The gearbox remains a weak spot but with the new AMG partnership it is just a matter of time until this is solved.