News, Culture & Society

Aston Martin to mark its return to F1 after a 60-year hiatus with special edition V8 Vantage

Aston Martin is to launch a special edition 200mph F1-inspired version of its V8 Vantage to celebrate the British car-firm’s return to Grand Prix racing after a gap of more than 60 years.

James Bond actor Daniel Craig and former 007 actress Gemma Arterton today unveiled the company’s new AMR21 Formula 1 race car that will take to the tracks in competition around the globe during an online virtual launch.

But hard on its heels for mainstream Aston customers will come a beefed up ‘track-focussed’ V8 Vantage road car bearing the F1 race-car’s livery and priced from around £140,000 – about £10,000 more than the standard version.

F1-inspired road car: The British brand has today revealed the livery of its first Formula One car for 60 years. And it has exclusively confirmed to This is Money that a V8 Vantage road car will be launched sharing the same livery

In a screened message to the Aston Martin team at the firm’s headquarters in Gaydon, Warwickshire, Daniel Craig wished them ‘massive congratulations’ adding: ‘Good luck … Go take it. I’ll see you on the grid.’ 

That new car is expected to be unveiled in a matter of weeks when full details will be officially revealed. 

It promises to be faster and more powerful than the standard 510 horsepower 4.0-litre twin turbo-charged V8 Vantage, which sprints from rest to 60mph in 3.5 seconds up to a top speed of 195mph.

It will be decorated in the same matching Aston Martin racing-green livery as the F1 car that is due to be driven by Lance Stroll and teammate Sebastian Vettel in the 2021 season.

For the launch of the new F1 car today Bond actor Daniel Craig, a real-life Aston Martin owner, sent a recorded message of support, adding some cinematic glamour to the company’s return to the Grand Prix circuit.

James Bond actor Daniel Craig and former 007 actress Gemma Arterton (pictured) today unveiled the company’s new AMR21 Formula 1 race car that will take to the tracks in competition around the globe during an online virtual launch

James Bond actor Daniel Craig and former 007 actress Gemma Arterton (pictured) today unveiled the company’s new AMR21 Formula 1 race car that will take to the tracks in competition around the globe during an online virtual launch

The F1-inspired V8 Vantage is a beefed up ‘track-focussed’ version of Aston's most-bought road car

The F1-inspired V8 Vantage is a beefed up ‘track-focussed’ version of Aston’s most-bought road car

The F1-inspired version will bear the F1 race-car’s livery and priced from around £140,000 – about £10,000 more than the standard version

The F1-inspired version will bear the F1 race-car’s livery and priced from around £140,000 – about £10,000 more than the standard version

Aston Martin already has the AMR version of the V8 Vantage, based on the endurance race team's racer, which cost £150,000 when new

Aston Martin already has the AMR version of the V8 Vantage, based on the endurance race team’s racer, which cost £150,000 when new

In the forthcoming but delayed 007 movie ‘No Time to Die’, set for screening in September, Craig drives four Aston Martins: the classic 1960s DB5 which made its debut in Goldfinger; a yet to be launched £1.5m Valhalla hypercar (set for 2023); a £215,000 DBS Superleggera; and an Aston V8 which had its last outing with 007 Timothy Dalton in the 1987 movie ‘The Living Daylights.’

Actress Gemma Arterton who is to host the unveiling of the new F1 car appeared in the 2008 007 movie ‘Quantum of Solace’ as doomed agent Strawberry Fields who meets her end smothered in crude oil.

Aston Martin has revealed its first F1 machine since 1960 today in a star-studded unveiling

Aston Martin has revealed its first F1 machine since 1960 today in a star-studded unveiling 

The new Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team AMR21 race car is powered by a turbo-charged Mercedes-AMG F1 M12 E Performance engine with hybrid energy recovery

The new Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team AMR21 race car is powered by a turbo-charged Mercedes-AMG F1 M12 E Performance engine with hybrid energy recovery

Aston Martin’s return to F1 after a 60-year hiatus  

Aston Martin said its return to Grand Prix racing heralded ‘the beginning of a truly significant chapter in the 108-year history of the brand.’ It said the F1 team will become an ‘innovation lab’ that guides future automotive technology which will transfer to customer cars.

Aston Martin last raced in F1 in 1960 with a DBR5, but bowed out after a chequered history during the 1950s and ‘60s. It hopes its return will be more successful.

Following a revamp and new investment under new executive chairman Lawrence Stroll – which included the departure of former chief executive Dr Andy Palmer – Mercedes-Benz now has a 20 per cent stake in the company and supplies engines. 

The new Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team AMR21 race car is powered by a turbo-charged Mercedes-AMG F1 M12 E Performance engine with hybrid energy recovery. It is to run for the first time at Silverstone on 4 March before embarking on a full test programme at Bahrain on 12 to 14 March ahead of its competitive return at the Bahrain Grand Prix on 28 March.

It will be the first works Formula 1 car to carry the firm’s famous winged badge since Maurice Trintignant’s DBR5 crossed the finish line at Silverstone in 1960.

The AMR21, to be raced this season by four-time F1 World Champion Sebastian Vettel and rising star Lance Stroll, son of the Aston executive chairman for whom the return to racing is ‘a dream come true’.

Lance Stroll

Sebastian Vettel

The AMR21 will be piloted by Lance Stroll (left), who is the son of the Aston executive chairman, and four-time F1 World Champion Sebastian Vettel (right)

A new 200,000 square-foot facility will complement the existing Aston Martin F1 factory at Silverstone when completed in the second half of 2022

A new 200,000 square-foot facility will complement the existing Aston Martin F1 factory at Silverstone when completed in the second half of 2022

The striking Aston Martin Racing Green livery is in recognition of Aston Martin’s traditional racing colours and sporting legacy.

Explaining how the F1 team is to become the global showcase for the brand’s engineering and performance capabilities, Aston Martin said: ‘The team is well positioned to become an innovation lab to drive forward the brand’s future road car technologies. These will include the suite of mid-engined sports-cars, inspired by the Aston Martin Valkyrie, which will become central to the product portfolio through the next decade.’

A new 200,000 square-foot facility will complement the existing Aston Martin F1 factory at Silverstone when completed in the second half of 2022.

Bosses said the company, formed by Lionel Martin and Robert Bamford in 1913, has always had motorsport at the heart of its endeavour, including overall victory in the 1959 24 Hours of Le Mans. Next year marks a century since Aston Martin made its grand prix debut in France 1922. Most recently Aston Martin became a double class winner with the Vantage GTE in last year’s race at La Sarthe and is the reigning GT FIA World Endurance Manufacturers’ champion.

Aston Martin Lagonda executive chairman Lawrence Stroll said: ‘I’ve dreamed about this day for a very long time. I’ve always been a car guy and I’ve always loved racing, too. My first dream was to own a Formula One team. My second dream was to acquire a significant shareholding in Aston Martin Lagonda.

‘Today is about the merging of those two dreams. So, as I say, today is all about dreams, and it shows that dreams really can come true.’

Aston Martin last raced in F1 in 1960 with a DBR5, but bowed out after a chequered history during the 1950s and ‘60s. It hopes its return will be more successful

Aston Martin last raced in F1 in 1960 with a DBR5, but bowed out after a chequered history during the 1950s and ‘60s. It hopes its return will be more successful

The striking Aston Martin Racing Green livery is in recognition of Aston Martin’s traditional racing colours and sporting legacy

The striking Aston Martin Racing Green livery is in recognition of Aston Martin’s traditional racing colours and sporting legacy

The iconic Aston Martin Wings logo has also been tweaked for only the 12th time in the company’s 108-year history. Mr Stroll said: ‘It’s natural that our new logo should make its debut on our new Formula One car.’

Aston Martin Lagonda chief executive officer Tobias Moers said: ‘Today is a truly historic moment for Aston Martin as we return to the pinnacle of motorsport for the first time in more than 60 years.’

He said: ‘The Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team will have far-reaching positive effects on the Aston Martin brand, our culture, and the design and technology of Aston Martin road cars.

‘Our return to Formula One will positively and profoundly affect every employee and foremost our customer journey all over the world.

‘Aston Martin has always made beautiful cars. Now, as we begin a new era of Aston Martin in Formula One, we’ll bring more innovation and more performance.’

SAVE MONEY ON MOTORING

Logo L&C

Some links in this article may be affiliate links. If you click on them we may earn a small commission. That helps us fund This Is Money, and keep it free to use. We do not write articles to promote products. We do not allow any commercial relationship to affect our editorial independence.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk