Powered by a new turbocharged V-6
From the DB9 to the Vantage, Aston Martin is best known for its front-engine cars. But for the Valkyrie hypercar, Aston Martin decided to stick its 6.5-liter V-12 behind the driver. If you thought the British automaker was only temporarily dabbling with mid-engine cars, though, you’d be very wrong. Not only will the Vanquish go mid-engine, the sports car maker’s also working on a new hybrid hypercar called AM-RB 003.
And if you see a lot of the Valkyrie in AM-RB 003’s styling, that’s intentional. As Miles Nurnberger, Aston Martin’s head of design, put it in a release, “We were quite deliberate with [AM-RB 003] to not disguise its lineage, but we were equally emphatic that it would be a distillation of Aston Martin Valkyrie and not a dilution.” Even though [AM-BR 003] looks a lot like the Valkyrie, though, it gets its own next-generation active aero kit with a flexible wing that sounds a lot like what we saw on the McLaren Speedtail. Instead of moving the entire wing, individual areas can be adjusted to reduce turbulence and wind noise, improve efficiency, and minimize drag.
Inside, you’ll notice AM-RB 003’s cabin is larger than the Valkyrie’s, as well. Aston says that was done to improve both usability and comfort. That’s also the reason why designers rejected the Valkyrie’s gullwing doors in favor of more practical forward-opening ones, as well as the reason there’s room behind the seats to store luggage.
The entire cabin’s design is still built around the driver, though. The steering wheel stands out as the focal point, with almost all the physical controls mounted there. And instead of an infotainment system, there’s an integrated mount for a phone or tablet. Advanced lightweight materials and 3-D printing also allowed designers to remove about 50 percent of the center console’s mass.
Power comes from a new turbocharged V-6 that Aston Martin designed in-house. Expect more powertrain details to be announced later, but Aston boss Andy Palmer promises the car will “more than compete” with hybrid hypercar benchmarks Porsche 918 Spyder and LaFerrari in the power department. That could mean the turbo V-6 will be supplemented by a significant electric boost. We also know AM-RB 003 will use the Vulcan’s sealed oil system that allows you to change the oil in as little as 90 seconds. Aston also says the chassis and bodywork are made from carbon fiber to keep the car’s weight as low as possible. And even though it’s been built to dominate the race track, an adaptive suspension should make Project 003 a usable road car, as well.
Hopefully, Aston Martin will announce more details at AM-RB 003’s Geneva motor show debut. But if not, there’s plenty of time for specs to be announced, since AM-RB 003 isn’t scheduled to begin production until late 2021.
Source: Aston Martin