When I saw this brand-new Aston Martin Vantage in Vancouver, I looked askance at its Vibrant Lime Essence paint. I found such a vibrant shade rather unbecoming of an Aston. Then I looked at its surroundings and realized a splash of colour is always welcome.
I know cars often look good in white, silver, gray or black but I wish so many other people didn’t know that, too. Though Land Rover offers some stunning paint colors like Madagascar Orange and the perennial British Racing Green, they – like most automakers – also offer a wide range of white, gray and black, as you can see at this dealership. So while I find lurid lime green rather incongruous on an Aston, a brand I associate with effortless elegance, it’s nice to have a splashy reprieve from monochromatic monotony.
As for the car itself, the Porsche 911-rivalling Vantage was redesigned for 2018. Gone are Aston’s house V8s and V12s, replaced with a 4.0 twin-turbocharged V8 sourced from Mercedes-AMG, producing 503 hp and 505 ft-lbs. The German bent-eight is good for a 0-60 blast of 3.6 seconds. While you may scoff at distinctly British Aston’s use of a German engine, however good it may be, purists will be pleased to hear there’s still a manual transmission available. The seven-speed is actually the only application of the 4.0 V8 with a manual transmission; an eight-speed automatic is optional.
The new Vantage is based on the same architecture as the larger DB11 grand tourer, whose styling is more in the graceful Aston-Martin norm. The DB11 is also your ticket to Aston’s homegrown twin-turbo V12.
Aston Martin remains my brand of choice for hypothetical massive lottery jackpot car purchases. While I’ll pass on the whites and blacks in their palette, I’d have to respectfully decline this retina-searing lime green Vantage. Instead, how about a special edition Aston Martin DBS Superleggera OHMSS in the same Olive Green as the ’69 DBS George Lazenby drove in his only Bond film? Now that’s a green befitting an Aston!