Cars > Aston Martin > Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24

By Ketan Patel


Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24

The Vantage N24 is based on a standard European specification production V8 Vantage, with modifications undertaken to prepare the car for the competitive racing environment.

Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24

Just after 15:00 hrs on 18 June 2006 , in the pit lane of the Nürburgring, Chris Porritt, Aston Martin's Vehicle Engineering Manager, stepped from the cockpit of a bright yellow V8 Vantage. In the preceding 24 hours, Porritt, along with his co-drivers, Dr Ulrich Bez, Aston Martin's Chief Executive, Horst von Saurma and Wolfgang Schuhbauer, had lapped the legendary 25.4 km (15.77 mile) circuit, nestling in Germany's mountainous Eifel region, some 130 times. The near-standard Aston Martin V8 Vantage finished 24th overall out of 220 starters - a staggering achievement among a field of mostly specialised race-homologated entrants.

The Nürburgring 24-hour race not only gives its name to the Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24, but provided a conclusive demonstration of its abilities: a near-standard car capable of tackling the demands of one of the world's most arduous racing circuits. Following the team's success in Germany , the Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 subsequently went on to finish eighth overall in the inaugural 24-hour race of Bahrain in December 2006, again competing with highly modified race cars. During the course of the race, the Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 covered over 2,600 km (1,600 miles), needing only fuel, brake pads and tyres.

In 2007, the Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 featured in the newly established European GT4 series. In May, at Silverstone the Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 took the top two places on the podium in the first GT4 race in a packed weekend of racing at the British circuit.

The Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 also returned to the Nürburgring throughout 2007 to compete in a series of VLN races, this timed joined by customers and an additional factory Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 equipped with the new Sportshift transmission. This culminated with class domination in May, as three Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24's finished second, third and fourth behind another Aston Martin - the DBRS9 in a VLN race at the Nürburgring.

In June Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24s returned in force to take on the Nürburgring 24-hour race for a second time with a record entry from the marque comprising three Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24's - two from the factory and a further customer team. All three Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24s came through a remarkable race in the SP8 class, as weather dominated proceedings causing a delayed start and the temporary halting of the race for over two hours.

With the formation of Aston Martin Racing in 2004, the marque made a long-awaited and very successful return to international sports car racing in 2005 with the GT1 Aston Martin DBR9 and in 2006 with the GT3 DBRS9. However, the company also has a long history of racing near-standard cars at both national and international level and the Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 builds on this tradition - a factory-built car well proven and ready to race.

The endurance races in Germany and Bahrain proved the Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24's ability beyond question. At the core of this achievement is, of course, a standard V8 Vantage.

The V8 Vantage was launched in 2005 to widespread critical acclaim, having undergone the most extensive test programme of any Aston Martin - in total over a million miles, including 19,000 km (12,000 miles) of desert driving at 50 ˚C in Dubai, cold-weather testing at -30 ˚C in Sweden and 60,000 km (37,000 miles) of maximum speed testing at Italy's Nardo track.

In standard form, the V8 Vantage's powerful 4.3-litre engine provides 283 kW (380 bhp), giving the car a maximum speed of 280 km/h (175 mph) and a 0-100 km/h time of 5.0 seconds (0-60 mph in 4.9 seconds). Aston Martin's unique VH (Vertical Horizontal) aluminium bonded architecture allows for class-leading strength and rigidity, with a front mid-mounted V8 creating optimum front to rear weight distribution and a low centre of gravity - the perfect basis for a successful race car.

At the 2006 British Motor Show, Dr Ulrich Bez announced that Aston Martin would build a limited production run of cars based on the V8 Vantage that completed the Nürburgring 24-hour endurance race. Just five months later, production commenced at Aston Martin's Gaydon headquarters.

The Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 is fastidiously hand-built in a dedicated facility within the factory. The level of detail and finish conforms to Aston Martin's exacting standards, fusing hand-craftsmanship with advanced technology. The Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 is based on a European specification V8 Vantage, with modifications to prepare the car for the racing environment. The engine is modified to enhance throttle response and performance. The crankshaft, connecting rods and pistons are lightened and balanced. Cylinder heads are re-profiled with inlet and exhaust ports smoothed and compression ratio optimised and the engine management system is calibrated for race use. The car also benefits from a free flow exhaust system and air filters. The standard V8 dry sump lubrication system is retained, helping to prevent oil surge during extreme cornering. The result is 305 kW (410 bhp) at 7500 rpm - a 22 kW (30 bhp) increase over the standard car.

The Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 comes as standard with a six-speed manual transmission. A Valeo twin-plate cerametallic racing clutch and lightweight flywheel complete the powertrain specification.

At 1350kg (2975lb), the Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 weighs 250 kg (550 lb) lighter than the standard car. The entire interior trim of the standard car is removed, with the exception of the facia moulding which is re-trimmed in Alcantara. The console and door casings are replaced by new lightweight mouldings. The air-conditioning system is removed, as are the airbags. The interior features a full high-strength steel roll-cage and Recaro Pole Position competition seat shell (a passenger seat and safety harness are an optional extra). A suede-trimmed steering wheel with a quick-release mechanism is also fitted as standard. The Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24's safety features are completed with a Schroth six-point safety harness with a push-button release and Lifeline Zero 360 gas extinguisher system.

The V8 Vantage's acclaimed suspension has required only minor adjustments for optimal track performance. These include larger-diameter front and rear anti-roll bars and adjustable ride height aluminium dampers, as well as single-rate, flat ground springs with separate helper springs. The front subframe is modified for extra camber and castor. Speedline cast magnesium front and rear wheels are standard fitted with high performance Yokohama A048-R tyres. The brakes are uprated with Pagid RS 29 race pads. As further endorsement of the standard V8 Vantage underframe, the active safety systems are directly carried over to the Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24, including dynamic stability control, traction control, ABS and electronic brakeforce distribution, providing reassurance and enhanced control in slippery conditions.

The Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 provides an ideal base for a wide variety of motorsport uses and is ideal for club racing amongst other categories. As supplied it is eligible for series such as the VLN Endurance Championship at the Nürburgring, the European GT4 Series, the AMOC UBS Aston Martin Championship, the Britcar Endurance Series, the Dutch Supercar Challenge, the Australian GT Championship and the European Endurance Championship. The Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24 is potentially eligible for the Grand-Am Cup and the SCCA Touring Car Class in the USA

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

The specification is based on a standard production, European specification (left hand drive), V8 Vantage with the following modifications:

  • BODY
    • FIA approved full roll-cage in 40 mm x 1.5 mm 15CDV6 high-strength steel
    • Preparation for pneumatic jacks incorporating tapping plates
    • Motorsport towing eyes
    • Polycarbonate side and rear windows - with slide opening on driver's side
    • Re-styled side sill with exposed carbon fibre rib
    • Quick-release bonnet/tail safety latching with hinges retained
    • Lightweight aluminium side strakes
  • ENGINE & TRANSMISSION
    • Cylinder heads; re-profiled and smoothed inlet and exhaust ports and optimised compression ratio
    • Crankshaft, connecting rods, pistons and flywheel lightened and balanced to race standards
    • ITG cylindrical foam air filters
    • Reduced cell density primary catalysts
    • Revised engine calibration (97 RON fuel)
    • EGR and secondary air system removed
    • Simplified oil breather system with catch tank
    • Weight-reduced rear muffler without by-pass valves
    • Air-conditioning system removed
    • FIA-approved ATL bag type fuel tank with twin fuel pumps - 100-litre (22 gallon) capacity. Filling point built into the right-hand C post with facility to accept a quick-fill 'dry break' arrangement
    • Standard six-speed manual transmission - fitted with breather catch tank Valeo twin-plate cerametallic clutch (215 mm) with lightweight flywheel
  • UNDERFRAME
    • Single-rate, flat ground, 2.5 in ID Eibach springs with separate helper springs
    • Stiffened front and rear anti-roll bars
    • Bilstein Suspensions adjustable ride height aluminium dampers
    • Front subframe modified for extra camber and castor
  • WHEELS & TYRES
    • Speedline 10 in X 18 in ET45 mm cast magnesium front wheels
    • Speedline 11 in X 18 in ET48 mm cast magnesium rear wheels
    • Yokohama A048-R tyres
    • Standard radial-mounted four-piston monobloc calipers fitted with high-performance Pagid RS 29 race pads
  • ELECTRICAL
    • Reduced weight and optimised route wiring harness
    • Optima gel battery
    • Battery cut-off relay
    • New switch panel mounted in centre console incorporating re-settable circuit breakers for each fuel pump, extinguisher button, battery cut-off button, heater controls, mirror switch and toggle switches for fog lights, hazard lights, traction control and heated front screen.
    • Panel graphics illuminated by electroluminescent film
    • Original V8 Vantage instrument pack
    • All other standard production ancillary electrical systems removed
  • INTERIOR
    • Recaro Pole Position competition shell seat embroidered with Aston Martin logo
    • Schroth six-point safety harness - push-button release
    • FIA compliant Lifeline Zero 360 plumbed-in extinguisher system (gas) - four engine bay and two interior nozzles
    • Raised driver's footrest
    • New simple door casings moulded in 'Twintex' for weight saving and compatibility with roll-cage
    • Weight-reduced facia, trimmed in Alcantara
    • Shortened one-piece carbon fibre centre console
    • Quick-release, suede-trimmed steering wheel
    • All other standard production trim and airbags removed
  • OPTIONS
    • Passenger seat and safety harness
    • Automated manual Sportshift transmission
    • Dry break fuel filler
    • Duel fuel filler
    • HANS seat and safety harness
    • Air jacks including lance
    • Pair of N24 Xenon sport lights
    • Indoor car cover
    • Outdoor car cover
  • DIMENSIONS & PERFORMANCE
    • Length 172.5 in (4380 mm)
    • Width
    • 73.5 in (1865 mm) (excluding mirrors)
    • 80 in (2025 mm) (including mirrors)
    • Height 47.5 in (1210 mm)
    • Wheelbase 102.5 in (2600 mm)
    • Front track 62.2 in (1580 mm)
    • Rear track 62.6 in (1590 mm)
  • Maximum power 305 kW (410 bhp)
  • Maximum torque 425 Nm (313 lb ft)
  • Kerb weight 1350 kg (excluding fuel)
  • Fuel tank size 100 litres
  • Price: GBP£78,720 + Local taxes + Delivery

 

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