The Driver’s Seat: Henry Catchpole on the New Aston Martin V8 Vantage

2025 Aston Martin V8 Vantage driving front 3/4

In his review of the new Aston Martin Vantage, Henry Catchpole ponders wherefore and how art the 656-hp baby of the range is like a James Bond film. Of course, we are familiar with 007 driving a fine silver slice from Newport Pagnell or Gaydon, but it’s far from the only predictable trope: music, gadgets, villains, M, Q, Moneypenny—all are expected. And so it is with the spec sheet of a Vantage. 

The looks are instantly recognizable—perhaps more so than with the last generation—with classically Aston Martin design cues. And it is stunning. The AMG-sourced four-liter, twin-turbocharged V-8 is up front, as you’d expect, albeit behind the front wheels. Predictably, power goes solely to the rear wheels. It’s a script that is comforting in its familiarity. 

2025 Aston Martin V8 Vantage Henry Catchpole

It is also very recognizable if you have perused the particulars of the Aston Martin DB12 that launched in 2023. In fact, save for a couple of seats and a very minor discrepancy in the power figures, they look like nearly identical cars. Even the Michelin Pilot Sport 5S tires are the same size, front and rear. So, one of the big questions for Catchpole was whether the new Vantage would feel markedly different to drive. 

The setting for the test was the countryside near Seville in southern Spain, with the blood red Rio Tinto running through it. We also took a new Vantage—this time decked out in an F1 safety car color scheme—to Circuito Monteblanco for some fast laps. Of course, we seized the opportunity to try out the handling with the new nine-stage traction control turned off, but the day also proved to be a test to see how well the Vantage’s increased cooling capability helped the car cope with temperatures approaching 90 degrees Fahrenheit. 

At $191,000, the new Aston Martin Vantage competes with the Porsche 911 Turbo S, the Mercedes AMG GT, the Ferrari Roma, and potentially the Maserati MC20. In other words, it has to stack up. Let us know in the comments whether you think the new Vantage is a Daniel Craig or a George Lazenby.

2025 Aston Martin V8 Vantage power slide


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    I think the V8 sounds a little stuffy and when it shifts farty. I expected it to sound a bit better for an Aston and for that V8. Either way it is a great looking car. I hope Aston keeps the ICE motors going on for a long time.

    It matters not what car Henry Catchpole drives, his opinions seem balanced, but the characteristic that always comes through in his presentations so strongly, and is absolutely clear, is his ongoing enthusiasm, even if the car has a number of warts. Of course, he seldom seems to drive any real dogs of cars, but still, everything from Miatas to Aston Martins get the same balanced treatment and enthusiasm and, frankly speaking, isn’t that what car fans want? After all, aren’t we all enthusiasts?

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