Aston Martin has released official info for the production version of its V12 Zagato ahead of the car’s public debut at the Kuwait Concours dâ€™ Elegance. If that audience seems a little strange to you then you’ll be comforted to know the V12 Zagato will also be on display at the Geneva Motor Show in March.
After coming to life last year in racing trim, only 150 road-ready V12 Zagatos will be made and if you’re in the UK you’ll need Â£330,000 plus taxes to get your hands on one. To put the price of this exclusive model in context for the same money you could buy a Porsche 911 GT3 RS 4.0 and a 911 Turbo, or three Audi R8 V10s or even 13 MINI JCW hatchbacks. Hmm, a top-end 911, R8 V10 and a MINI JCW would make a nice collection.
Despite the rather crude Meccacno-like rear wing, none of those cars cut quite the same figure as the stylish Zagato, though. And if you’re buying at that end of the market you’re probably not too fussed about the price of exclusivity.
Aston Martinâ€™s CEO, Dr Ulrich Bez, thinks that and more, saying the V12 Zagato is “a celebration of both Aston Martinâ€™s heritage and its future. Our relationship with Zagato stretches back more than 50 years. Together in that time we have created a series of very special cars.
“The first â€“ the DB4GT Zagato â€“ is a true icon: fast, beautiful and incredibly desirable. In the V12 Zagato I believe we have captured the spirit of that car and combined it with a confident twist of modernity to give it a character all of its own.”
The new Aston Martin V12 Zagato
- Production V12 Zagato set for European debut at Geneva Salon International 2012
- Created using materials, processes and technology pioneered on the One-77
- Body panels blend hand-formed aluminium with high-tech carbon fibre
- Production to commence Q3 2012, first deliveries Q4 2012
- Strictly limited to a maximum of 150 cars
- On sale now priced at Â£330,000 (plus local taxes)
9 February 2012, Gaydon: With the final design signed-off and engineering development work progressing apace, Aston Martin today reveals the first images of the new V12 Zagato (road car) scheduled for production later this year.
The V12 Zagato is the pinnacle of the Vantage range. It is also the latest expression of a successful creative collaboration that has given rise to a series of striking GT cars over the last half-century, the original and most iconic of which being the DB4GT Zagato. Not only does this masterpiece rank amongst the most desirable, collectable and valuable cars in history, its 50th anniversary provided the inspiration for the V12 Zagato.
Though commemorating a great Aston Martin of the past the V12 Zagato could be no mere pastiche of the original. Instead the project was seen as the perfect opportunity to take Aston Martinâ€™s ethos of technology and tradition to a new and exciting level. To this end the V12 Zagato combines the modern ideas, materials, processes and technology pioneered on One-77, while remaining true to the purity and craftsmanship of its illustrious forebear.
For Aston Martinâ€™s CEO, Dr Ulrich Bez, the V12 Zagato is â€œa celebration of both Aston Martinâ€™s heritage and its futureâ€. He continues: â€œOur relationship with Zagato stretches back more than 50 years. Together in that time we have created a series of very special cars. The first â€“ the DB4GT Zagato â€“ is a true icon: fast, beautiful and incredibly desirable. In the V12 Zagato I believe we have captured the spirit of that car and combined it with a confident twist of modernity to give it a character all of its own.â€
Initial design concepts for the V12 Zagato were explored in early 2010. Inspired by Zagatoâ€™s bold and individual styling signatures Aston Martinâ€™s Director of Design, Marek Reichman, and his Gaydon-based design team relished the challenge of shaping the V12 Zagato, creating a car that pushes the boundaries of Aston Martinâ€™s design language, yet pays tribute to the DB4GT Zagato. Demonstrating Aston Martinâ€™s ability to rapidly bring ideas to fruition the Zagato programme quickly gained momentum, the design team working hand-in-hand with engineers and artisans to complete the build of a pair of concept cars in the spring of 2011.
May 2011 saw the V12 Zagato make its world debut at the prestigious Villa dâ€™Este concours. Entered in the Concept Cars and Prototypes class, the V12 Zagato wowed the judges and the crowd, taking first place against impressive opposition. In June the Villa dâ€™Este winner – along with the second prototype car â€“ made the V12 Zagatoâ€™s world racing debut at the gruelling 24 hour endurance race held at the NÃ¼rburgring. Both cars completed the ultimate durability test, continuing Aston Martinâ€™s 100 per cent finishing record in this notoriously tough race.
After an overwhelmingly positive response from customers, the decision was made in July 2011 to build a strictly limited run of V12 Zagatos. Since then, Aston Martinâ€™s design team has worked to refine the sports carâ€™s detailing and aerodynamic performance while staying faithful to the original design concept. At the same time engineers based at Gaydon have been putting prototypes through the companyâ€™s rigorous development programme to ensure the V12 Zagato performs as well as it looks.
Every Aston Martin is a unique combination of advanced materials, technology and time-honoured craftsmanship. The V12 Zagato takes this philosophy to a level previously seen in the companyâ€™s exquisite One-77 supercar, which completes its build run this year. Built at Aston Martinâ€™s global headquarters in Gaydon, Warwickshire, production of the V12 Zagato will be strictly limited to no more than 150 cars.
Creating each V12 Zagato is a painstaking process that takes approximately 2,000 man-hours to complete. Just like the One-77, the V12 Zagato is constructed from a combination of hand crafted aluminium and carbon fibre. The bonnet, signature â€˜double-bubbleâ€™ roof and doors are hand-crafted aluminium, while the front and rear fenders, door sills and boot lid surround are made from carbon fibre.
The finished body is then painted in the same dedicated area as the One-77. Four unique colours have been created for the V12 Zagato: Scintilla Silver, Alloro Green, Alba Blue and Diavolo Red. The painting process alone takes some 100 hours to complete and is followed by the marriage of the body and the drivetrain within the sports car production area. From there the V12 Zagato is transferred to the standalone facility originally built to house One-77 production, where the build is completed.
This serene, laboratory-like space is perfectly suited to the task of creating special cars such as the V12 Zagato. It is here that time is lavished upon the fitment and installation of an array of bespoke components, including the side glass and the distinctive rear window, which features a curved surface that continues the sculptural lines of the â€˜double-bubbleâ€™ roof. All the exterior brightwork around the windows has a contemporary black finish to compliment the exposed carbon fibre components. Fitment of the hand-crafted interior and upholstery is also completed in this dedicated build area.
Like all Aston Martins when viewed as a whole the V12 Zagato is an artful composition of powerful lines and compelling proportions, but when viewed up close it reveals sophisticated, sculptural surfaces and jewel-like details. The exposed elements of carbon fibre on the front splitter, A-pillars, rear lamp pods, diffuser, door mirror cases and rear wing all display the same perfectly symmetrical weave and smooth resin finish. Likewise the bold new grille is formed in a unique three-dimensional composite material mesh that echoes Zagatoâ€™s famous â€˜Zâ€™ moniker.
More delights are found inside. Seven Bridge of Weir hides â€“ in semi-aniline finish to offer durability while preserving the natural texture of the leather – are used to trim the V12 Zagatoâ€™s interior. Hand-stitched quilting of a unique design creates a flowing pattern that evokes a dynamic sense of movement across the seats and headlining, while â€˜Zâ€™ embroidery in the headrests and rear parcel shelf add a further flourish. Satin-finish carbon fibre on the dashboard and centre stack is perfectly complimented by piano black accents and satin black rotary switchgear. Carbon fibre sill plaques with â€™V12 Zagatoâ€™ inlaid metal script provide a distinctive finishing touch.
A work of art built by skilled craftsmen to be driven and enjoyed by the worldâ€™s most discerning car collectors, the V12 Zagato is a fitting tribute to its illustrious ancestor. On-sale now priced at Â£330,000 (plus local taxes) the production specification V12 Zagato will be showcased at the Geneva Salon International in March 2012. First deliveries are scheduled for Autumn 2012.