They may well say that discretion is the better part of valour, but there is nothing discrete about Aston Martin’s 110th anniversary celebration.
The Valour is a brutally handsome homage to the V8 Vantage of the 1970s and 1980s, but beneath its muscular hood sits a 5.2-litre V12 that’s been bolstered by twin turbochargers to produce an epic 705bhp. As befits this joyful jubilee of Aston’s illustrious past, the Valour sends drive to the rear wheels through a six-speed manual transmission and a mechanical limited-slip differential.
“Inspired by the iconic, muscle cars from our past, we have endowed Valour with an abundance of power and torque, while using modern technology and engineering to make that performance more exploitable and enjoyable,” says Simon Newton, Aston Martin’s Director of Vehicle Performance. “A big part of honouring that driver-pleasing character was mating our fabulous V12 engine to a manual transmission. It was a unique part of the brief and the end result is something truly unforgettable; a state-of-the-art driver’s car that thrives on being pushed to its limits and has the true heart and soul of a timeless analogue classic.”
The throwback driving experience is echoed in the Valour’s styling which takes cues from the company’s hairy-chested glory days, and the one-off Victor that was released in 2021. The body is entirely fabricated in carbon fibre and the clamshell hood features a giant horseshoe-shaped vent, along with NACA ducts to allow the V12 to breathe freely. The brand’s traditional grille has been shaped in a mix of aluminium and carbon fibre, with further intakes to cool the brakes. Airflow management is key to the design, with a large front splitter and fender fenders channeling it under and over the car. Covering the rear is a louvred hatch with ‘exoblades’ that perform more aero magic along with the Kamm tail and chunky rear diffuser.
The Valour’s rear end is the only part you’re likely to see as it vanishes into the distance, so Aston has made it truly distinctive. There are stunning six-bladed light clusters similar to the Valkyrie, a full-width milled alumnium accent, plus a striking triple-exit exhaust made from stainless steel.
“Valour is gloriously unapologetic; an old-school brute refined and reimagined through the lens of 2023,” says Miles Nurnberger, Aston Martin’s Director of Design.
Inside the two-seater’s cabin is dominated by the manual transmission and its exposed mechanism which comes with a choice of machined aluminium, titanium, carbon, or walnut for the shift knob. It’s a beautiful blend of tradition and tech inside, with tweed woollen fabrics inspired by the Le Mans-winning DBR1 of 1959, along with plenty of carbon fiber.
Aston Martin will also offer a choice of hand-painted liveries and 21 paint colors, with customers also able to take personalization even further with the aid of the company’s Q branch.
Only 110 build slots will be available beginning in the autumn of 2023, and, no doubt, they’ve all been allocated to Aston aficionados already.