The new Aston Martin Rapide S is set to make its debut with yet more luxury and yet more power on offer in its elegant four-door silhouette.
The British car-maker's new luxury GT has been redesigned and re-engineered.
Aside from the extensive design and engineering improvements, the luxurious new Rapide S — which replaces the outgoing Rapide in markets worldwide — is now even more refined thanks to a range of additions to the four-seater's sumptuous interior.
Still instantly recognisable as an Aston Martin, of course, the new Rapide S now boasts an imposing and assertive new "face", created by virtue of the striking new full grille.
Imbuing the new car with an even more sporting, forceful demeanour, the revised front-end design is matched at the back by a striking new rear deck profile which includes a more pronounced boot lid "flip". The aerodynamic and aesthetic upgrades both re-inforce the sporting nature of new Rapide S and work to counteract lift at higher speeds.
Aston Martin Chief Executive Officer, Dr Ulrich Bez said: "The Rapide S is to me, without doubt, the most beautiful four-door sports car on the market today. This is, very clearly, the power of luxury in action.
"The car's stunning visual appeal is now matched by a much more powerful and yet more efficient engine — our exceptional new AM11 V12 — which increases massively both the excitement and performance potential of the Rapide S.
"It is a four-door sports car that uniquely combines luxury, style and sporting excitement in Aston Martin's most flexible and accommodating silhouette. Purity of proportion and exceptional elegance are mixed with truly sensational dynamic performance — this is the four-door sports car in its most versatile form and I am sure our customers around the world are going to love it."
Changes under the new Rapide’s skin are comprehensive, with a version of the new AM11 naturally-aspirated 6.0-litre V12 powerplant delivering more power and improved in-gear acceleration.
Power from the new engine jumps significantly: up by 17 percent or a 60kW from 350kW at 6000rpm to 410kW at 6750rpm.
Peak torque increases, too, up from 600Nm to 620Nm at 5000rpm. Meanwhile, an even more marked improvement in torque occurs lower down the rev range, as pulling power rises by more than 40Nm between idle and 4000rpm with an additional 50Nm available at 2500rpm.
Naturally, increases in power and torque lead to even swifter performance as befits a four-door sports car. The new Rapide S shaves 0.3 seconds off its 0-100km/h time, which drops from the 5.2 seconds of the current car to 4.9 seconds for the new model. Top speed climbs, meanwhile, to 305km/h.
The 5935cc naturally aspirated V12 boasts racecar technology — developments derived directly from Aston Martin Racing's successful WEC GT campaign — to maximise both performance and efficiency. The new AM11 engine thus boasts fully CNC machined combustion chambers and lighter, hollow, camshafts.
The engine is now more efficient, too. Despite the significant increase in peak power and torque, the Rapide S is more economical than before. CO2 emissions drop by seven per cent — from 355g/km to 332g/km.
The new car now boasts a host of fresh luxury- or sports-orientated options, allowing buyers to more precisely tailor the car to their specific style.
The new optional Carbon Exterior Pack, for instance, immediately dials up the Rapide's sporting attitude. Front splitter, rear diffuser, mirror caps and rear lamp infills all fashioned from carbon fibre clearly signal the sporting nature of the four-seater.
More pronounced luxury, on the other hand, comes from the new piano black interior pack that adds a deep, rich, mirror-like shine to the facia, transmission tunnel centre-plate and door handles of the Rapide S. A darker surround in the instrument binnacle and steering wheel with black horn-push surround round off the pack's sumptuous additions. Luxurious blend headlinings in either tan or grey emphasise the luxury still further inside.
As would be expected of a modern Aston Martin, handcrafting is the order of the day in the Rapide S with the standard-fit pure glass transmission selector switches in the centre console one small yet important example of the authentic, bespoke, nature of the car's cabin.
However those with a desire for a more sporting ambience in their sports car will not be disappointed. Optional duotone perforated red and black leather makes its Aston Martin debut here — delivering a captivating visual combination that's unique to the new Rapide S.
Luxury is enhanced by the removal of extraneous "noise" and the enhancement of desirable "sound" — a fine distinction but one that helps the new car deliver an aural experience like no other. Improved NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) characteristics are derived from the likes of the new bonnet lining and revised windscreen cowl.
Flexibility comes in the form of four seats — the rearmost two capable of accommodating adults in a uniquely sporting setting — while at the touch of a button the individual back seats fold down to almost triple the Aston Martin's loadspace.