Should I go for a Vantage?

Should I go for a Vantage?

Author
Discussion

Andy_M_

Original Poster:

34 posts

90 months

Monday 13th March
quotequote all
Hello all, looking to get a some points of view.

I am planning my next car ... I'm looking to move from my BMW M2C into something else. It is not a daily as I have an EV. I also have a Lotus Elise CUP which I use for track days and club events. I am still thinking about the usual Porsche route, but as I was scrolling through V8 and V12 coupe options and there was the Vantage.

Not having spent much time researching them before I am just wondering what the consensus is on the sweet spot for a first time owner. I am naturally drawn to the main dealers for the warranty but that pushes me toward V12, last of the V8S or the latest Vantage. But I also recognise there are specialists that deal with older models. What is the real story on reliability? I've had a history of Lotuses so fully familiar with annoying niggles. bad Customer Service and disinterested Dealers. I like the idea of a V12 but are the bills eye watering? Is the best V8 the last V8S / N430 versions? What do people think of the newest model, has most of the depreciation now been had as looking at some 2019 cars with over £50-60K of depreciation from list + options.

I know that is a broad range of models and prices - 4.7s at £45-50K up to V12 / Vantage at £90K. Also, If I go V8 / V12 then it would have to be manual. Obviously the newest model has the ZF auto which is also fine. But actually, I've seen some say that the motorised manual in the V12S is also good.




alscar

2,173 posts

200 months

Monday 13th March
quotequote all
As with your similar post on the Porsche forum you will get marque fans confusing you even more.
I guess the first point should be what is your budget ?
I had a succession of 911’s ( all 997 1 and 2’s ) culminating in a GT3 and then a decade ago bought my first Aston - SP10 special edition which was a V8S with extra spec - manual.
I then made the mistake of driving a V12 S ( sportshift 3 - basically think automated manual ) a couple of years later and specced one from new.
2 years post that bought a Vantage GT8 which I still have.
In the meantime I sold the V12 and bought a new shape Vantage which I have also now sold.
Buying an Aston was and remains a totally different experience to Porsche - generally treatment at the dealers is far superior ( and not necessarily way more expensive ) but the Astons are prone to more niggles than Porsche.
I used mine daily and I would say over that period there were probably 6 times where it needed recovery to the dealer on a low loader. Nothing major but just irritating things like thermostat failure , fuel flap failure ( very common ) and the like. In comparison never on any Porsche but still the occasional issue.
Driving the V12 daily was far more pleasant than the V8S manual.
The new shape Vantage was great to drive and in isolation feels more 911 like than perhaps the others.
GT8 is obviously a different proposition altogether - I will never sell that.
You will get probably more “respect “with any Aston if that’s important to you and you will see less of them.
Depending on what budget you may feel that the Aston feels more old fashioned than perhaps the 991 but not versus a 997.
Aston offer fixed price servicing on the older models ( the newer ones came with 5 year service plans ) as do Porsche - difference being Aston is annual v the Porsche every 2 years so definitely Porsche wins the annual running costs.
Having had the benefit of that experience I would say that a V12S - sportshift - is the answer.
Drive them all though and see what you think.



Dewi 2

1,013 posts

52 months

Monday 13th March
quotequote all

Hello Andy,

To answer you subject question - YES.

The 2005 to 2018 models tend to now be referred to as VH era.
Sports cars of that time are wonderful to some, because they are naturally aspirated; minimal exhaust restrictors, manual gearboxes available. As you will know, the last of an era.

Driving an Aston Martin always somehow seems to have a sense of occasion. No need to be driving fast, there is something unique about them, which is ideal for a non-daily driver car.

My V8 Vantage was made during what some call the sweet spot.
It has all of the designers original bodywork, but possesses the 4.7 engine. Only built from Sept. 2008 to early 2012.
Have owned it now for about 12 years, it sleeps each winter and the reliability has been almost perfect.
It has an aftermarket twin plate clutch, with sound and power being upped a little.
The V12 is of course a faster car, but in practice on the road, I can only use full throttle for annoyingly brief periods anyway.
It is very rare to see another Aston Martin when driving, which adds to the feeling.
The Aston Martin exhaust sound is wonderful, if that characteristic appeals to you.

The arithmetic has been pretty good with minimal depreciation, having purchased at 40% off the original price, when about 2.5 years old, but irrelevant anyway being a keeper.

There are opposing opinions about the 2018 onwards Vantage, so all that I will say is, comparing the sales figures, might be a reflection of the demand differences.

Enjoy your search. There are many pampered pristine cars around, many never for sale, but you just have to be patient and wait for your desired spec. to become available.


Andy_M_

Original Poster:

34 posts

90 months

Monday 13th March
quotequote all
alscar said:
As with your similar post on the Porsche forum you will get marque fans confusing you even more.
I guess the first point should be what is your budget ?
I had a succession of 911’s ( all 997 1 and 2’s ) culminating in a GT3 and then a decade ago bought my first Aston - SP10 special edition which was a V8S with extra spec - manual.
I then made the mistake of driving a V12 S ( sportshift 3 - basically think automated manual ) a couple of years later and specced one from new.
2 years post that bought a Vantage GT8 which I still have.
In the meantime I sold the V12 and bought a new shape Vantage which I have also now sold.
Buying an Aston was and remains a totally different experience to Porsche - generally treatment at the dealers is far superior ( and not necessarily way more expensive ) but the Astons are prone to more niggles than Porsche.
I used mine daily and I would say over that period there were probably 6 times where it needed recovery to the dealer on a low loader. Nothing major but just irritating things like thermostat failure , fuel flap failure ( very common ) and the like. In comparison never on any Porsche but still the occasional issue.
Driving the V12 daily was far more pleasant than the V8S manual.
The new shape Vantage was great to drive and in isolation feels more 911 like than perhaps the others.
GT8 is obviously a different proposition altogether - I will never sell that.
You will get probably more “respect “with any Aston if that’s important to you and you will see less of them.
Depending on what budget you may feel that the Aston feels more old fashioned than perhaps the 991 but not versus a 997.
Aston offer fixed price servicing on the older models ( the newer ones came with 5 year service plans ) as do Porsche - difference being Aston is annual v the Porsche every 2 years so definitely Porsche wins the annual running costs.
Having had the benefit of that experience I would say that a V12S - sportshift - is the answer.
Drive them all though and see what you think.
Thanks, always difficult to get cross brand discussions ... people will always tend to gravitate to their allegiances.

6 times being recovered is a bit sobering ... was that the V12 or across all the cars?

What is it with the VH cars then? Is it their old school nature? You've had the newer car but you mentioned it so briefly that it clearly didn't do much for you. I'd probably drive the newer car and it would be such an occasion that I would buy it but would I still be interested in it in a year.

V12S Sportshift I initially discounted because I think I want a manual. Is the V12S a better overall package even though the manual is so much more expensive?



Andy_M_

Original Poster:

34 posts

90 months

Monday 13th March
quotequote all
Dewi 2 said:

Hello Andy,

To answer you subject question - YES.

The 2005 to 2018 models tend to now be referred to as VH era.
Sports cars of that time are wonderful to some, because they are naturally aspirated; minimal exhaust restrictors, manual gearboxes available. As you will know, the last of an era.

Driving an Aston Martin always somehow seems to have a sense of occasion. No need to be driving fast, there is something unique about them, which is ideal for a non-daily driver car.

My V8 Vantage was made during what some call the sweet spot.
It has all of the designers original bodywork, but possesses the 4.7 engine. Only built from Sept. 2008 to early 2012.
Have owned it now for about 12 years, it sleeps each winter and the reliability has been almost perfect.
It has an aftermarket twin plate clutch, with sound and power being upped a little.
The V12 is of course a faster car, but in practice on the road, I can only use full throttle for annoyingly brief periods anyway.
It is very rare to see another Aston Martin when driving, which adds to the feeling.
The Aston Martin exhaust sound is wonderful, if that characteristic appeals to you.

The arithmetic has been pretty good with minimal depreciation, having purchased at 40% off the original price, when about 2.5 years old, but irrelevant anyway being a keeper.

There are opposing opinions about the 2018 onwards Vantage, so all that I will say is, comparing the sales figures, might be a reflection of the demand differences.

Enjoy your search. There are many pampered pristine cars around, many never for sale, but you just have to be patient and wait for your desired spec. to become available.
Thanks Dewi, there does seem to be more love for the VH cars and your single car history is testament to that. In the last 12 years I have probably owned 20+ cars - some go quickly, some hang around for a few years. Perhaps I am leaning a bit to the late V8 or a V12. I had initially persuaded myself that the newer model might be the way to go.

Still worried about the potential for big bills.

Davil

139 posts

13 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all
Well, I bought an M2C when they were first released, great car. I traded that on an M2CS which is a significant step up in performance, handling, steering and most importantly, driving experience. I still have that and won’t sell it ever, as I think it’s the best M car ever made and probably ever will. It also seats 4 in reasonable comfort and fine for “everyday” use. I don’t have a commute but do sometimes have more than one passenger.

Late 2021 I decided now was the time to own an Aston. While I, a) am not grey, b) have hair, and am young enough to enjoy it.

So I researched endlessly. First thing to do is buy “the book”.
https://www.amazon.com.au/Definitive-Guide-Gaydon-...

I got very lucky, as one of the final 200 VH vantages came up for sale and in manual. Only 6 made it to Australia. V8 Vantage AMR MY18.

It has more power than you’ll ever need for the road. Roughly the same power as my M2CS. Compared to the M2C, it has less low end torque but more top end power. So if you like to shift gears and love that naturally aspirated feel then you’ll find it more rewarding than the M2C.

One of the reasons for wanting the last of the last is that it feels almost resto-mod. All the niggles sorted. A vastly improved interior and a good infotainment system that has Apple CarPlay all in a very analogue feeling old school driving experience.

One thing that will blow you away compared to the M2C (and Porsches) is the quality of the interior. Everything is leather, Alcantara, carbon fibre or aluminium. And the smell is just divine. No squeaks, rattles, just a solid quality feeling. And the sound system is just remarkable. As is the sound of the exhaust. They often harmonise to a level you think you’ll only ever hear in a movie. It’s that good. You just can’t stop smiling when it happens.

The steering is pretty much perfection. Hydraulic, heavy, brimming with so much feel. Especially after replacing the terrible OEM Bridgestones with Bridgestone Potenza Sport. That’s a must do upgrade as it improves the ride, handling and driving enjoyment so much.

The balance of the car just makes you smile. The engine is behind the front axle. It never feels nose heavy and just rotates. I prefer handling over too much power which is why I prefer it to the V12. But the V12 obviously has great, but different appeal. So, horses for courses there.

The ride is firm, but just how I like it. You might think it would get bounced off line on bumpy roads like the M2C, but it doesn’t as there is a lot more suspension travel and way higher quality shocks.

The other great thing is that it still feels wonderful to drive at slow speeds. If you’ve driven a 992 or new M4, you’ll know how incredibly boring they are to drive unless doing something illegal.

The other bizarre aspect of Aston ownership is just how nice people are to you on the road. People pull over to let you pass. Let you in in traffic, give you thumbs up. Let’s just say that’s nothing like BMW or Porsche ownership.

It’s in no way a daily driver of a car though. It’s a couple of times a week car. A car for when you want to escape the modern world and just feel like man and machine.

So overall, I cannot recommend one more highly. I am so enamoured by this car, that, for over a year now, if I haven’t seen it that day I will walk down to my garage and just look at it. I have not missed a single day.

It’s an event every time. First you look at it, taking in the beauty, then you sit in it and breathe that wonderful aroma, then you do the overcomplicated but massively enjoyable crystal key start up process and are treated to that magnificent roar. Then you deal with the idiosyncratic reverse gear which is unnecessarily tall (but you get used to that) and then you are off in your escape pod. Back in another era of peak analogue sports car.

Also, weirdly enough, it has increased in value since I bought it (manual ones are more rare). Not that I’m ever going to sell it. The recent Bamford Rose shows they are holding strong in the UK too. End of an era models always seem to do well over time.



Edited by Davil on Tuesday 14th March 02:10


Edited by Davil on Tuesday 14th March 02:23

nickv12

1,193 posts

70 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all
Normally I'd say go for a VH era (up to 2018) V8 or V12S.

With the V8 from the 2012.25 MY upgrade, there was only 10bhp difference between the S and non-S, so go by spec as either can have comfort (recommended) or sport suspension, manual, SportShift II, etc.

For the V12, only the first round from 2009 were non-S manuals. The later V12S models could be either SportShift III (great 'box and very interactive, which you have to learn) or dogleg 7 speed manual. You have to try either, to know what you like and start out with an open mind.

However, here's a curveball. Last week, I visit AM Bristol and they had this very nicely spec'd current (V8) Vantage:
https://www.dicklovett.co.uk/aston-martin/used-car...

It's very rare, as it's the same 7 speed dogleg manual as found in the previous VH-era Vantage. They are no longer available as demand was too low. This car surprises me as it's quite a low cost (relatively) for its age and that it's a manual. I also think the overall leather interior with yellow stitching helps that model.

Give 'em all a go to know what you like.

Jon39

11,376 posts

130 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all

Andy_M_ said:

Still worried about the potential for big bills.
Perhaps a glance through this topic, might help put your mind at rest concerning big bills.
Owners would probably not repeatedly buy another Aston Martin, if they had already faced big bills.

https://www.pistonheads.com/gassing/topic.asp?h=0&...

10 pages of repeat buyers.


mogg

185 posts

245 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all
alscar said:
As with your similar post on the Porsche forum you will get marque fans confusing you even more.
I guess the first point should be what is your budget ?
I had a succession of 911’s ( all 997 1 and 2’s ) culminating in a GT3 and then a decade ago bought my first Aston - SP10 special edition which was a V8S with extra spec - manual.
I then made the mistake of driving a V12 S ( sportshift 3 - basically think automated manual ) a couple of years later and specced one from new.
2 years post that bought a Vantage GT8 which I still have.
In the meantime I sold the V12 and bought a new shape Vantage which I have also now sold.
Buying an Aston was and remains a totally different experience to Porsche - generally treatment at the dealers is far superior ( and not necessarily way more expensive ) but the Astons are prone to more niggles than Porsche.
I used mine daily and I would say over that period there were probably 6 times where it needed recovery to the dealer on a low loader. Nothing major but just irritating things like thermostat failure , fuel flap failure ( very common ) and the like. In comparison never on any Porsche but still the occasional issue.
Driving the V12 daily was far more pleasant than the V8S manual.
The new shape Vantage was great to drive and in isolation feels more 911 like than perhaps the others.
GT8 is obviously a different proposition altogether - I will never sell that.
You will get probably more “respect “with any Aston if that’s important to you and you will see less of them.
Depending on what budget you may feel that the Aston feels more old fashioned than perhaps the 991 but not versus a 997.
Aston offer fixed price servicing on the older models ( the newer ones came with 5 year service plans ) as do Porsche - difference being Aston is annual v the Porsche every 2 years so definitely Porsche wins the annual running costs.
Having had the benefit of that experience I would say that a V12S - sportshift - is the answer.
Drive them all though and see what you think.
+1. I came to my V12VS SSIII from a Lotus 410 Sport. Had it 3 years now and ran it alongside a 991.1 GT3RS which I also really enjoyed but is now gone. Can't see me changing the Aston anytime soon. There is just something about Astons that is timeless (to quote a phrase) biggrin

alscar

2,173 posts

200 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all
Andy_M_ said:
Thanks, always difficult to get cross brand discussions ... people will always tend to gravitate to their allegiances.

6 times being recovered is a bit sobering ... was that the V12 or across all the cars?

What is it with the VH cars then? Is it their old school nature? You've had the newer car but you mentioned it so briefly that it clearly didn't do much for you. I'd probably drive the newer car and it would be such an occasion that I would buy it but would I still be interested in it in a year.

V12S Sportshift I initially discounted because I think I want a manual. Is the V12S a better overall package even though the manual is so much more expensive?
Andy , that 6 times being recovered was actually across 3 cars - twice on the original V8S ( non working fuel flap and then one diamond cut wheel needed work needed work ) , 3 times on the V12 - fuel flap again ,thermostat gave up , issue on oil filling post service and the newer one once when the ZBC ( drive shaft ) needed realignment.Nothing major but niggles as I said although as dailies would have been very annoying if I didn't have other cars.The fuel flap on the Gaydon cars is a well known issue and even after dealers have supposedly mended ( usually with a different spring and realignment ) they can fail again BUT knowing what I now know it wouldn't worry me as can usually get them open !

The new car was lovely to drive and felt very modern compared to the others and it didn't even sound too bad but I probably should never have replaced my V12 with it.I sold it as with Covid I just wasn't using it as wfh and there was a limit to how many cars I wanted doing nothing.

If you want a manual then no point in driving it.

I would however still recommend you try a Sportshift V12 just to see - slight curl of the toes when changing gear is all that is required to really get engaged with it although make sure you test one for more than 5 minutes.

Andy_M_

Original Poster:

34 posts

90 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all
Davil said:
Well, I bought an M2C when they were first released, great car. I traded that on an M2CS which is a significant step up in performance, handling, steering and most importantly, driving experience. I still have that and won’t sell it ever, as I think it’s the best M car ever made and probably ever will. It also seats 4 in reasonable comfort and fine for “everyday” use. I don’t have a commute but do sometimes have more than one passenger.

Late 2021 I decided now was the time to own an Aston. While I, a) am not grey, b) have hair, and am young enough to enjoy it.

So I researched endlessly. First thing to do is buy “the book”.
https://www.amazon.com.au/Definitive-Guide-Gaydon-...

I got very lucky, as one of the final 200 VH vantages came up for sale and in manual. Only 6 made it to Australia. V8 Vantage AMR MY18.

It has more power than you’ll ever need for the road. Roughly the same power as my M2CS. Compared to the M2C, it has less low end torque but more top end power. So if you like to shift gears and love that naturally aspirated feel then you’ll find it more rewarding than the M2C.

One of the reasons for wanting the last of the last is that it feels almost resto-mod. All the niggles sorted. A vastly improved interior and a good infotainment system that has Apple CarPlay all in a very analogue feeling old school driving experience.

One thing that will blow you away compared to the M2C (and Porsches) is the quality of the interior. Everything is leather, Alcantara, carbon fibre or aluminium. And the smell is just divine. No squeaks, rattles, just a solid quality feeling. And the sound system is just remarkable. As is the sound of the exhaust. They often harmonise to a level you think you’ll only ever hear in a movie. It’s that good. You just can’t stop smiling when it happens.

The steering is pretty much perfection. Hydraulic, heavy, brimming with so much feel. Especially after replacing the terrible OEM Bridgestones with Bridgestone Potenza Sport. That’s a must do upgrade as it improves the ride, handling and driving enjoyment so much.

The balance of the car just makes you smile. The engine is behind the front axle. It never feels nose heavy and just rotates. I prefer handling over too much power which is why I prefer it to the V12. But the V12 obviously has great, but different appeal. So, horses for courses there.

The ride is firm, but just how I like it. You might think it would get bounced off line on bumpy roads like the M2C, but it doesn’t as there is a lot more suspension travel and way higher quality shocks.

The other great thing is that it still feels wonderful to drive at slow speeds. If you’ve driven a 992 or new M4, you’ll know how incredibly boring they are to drive unless doing something illegal.


Hi Davil,

Thanks for the detailed write-up and your experience of M2C to Vantage. I guess the two main reasons for me moving away from the M2 is the ride quality and (with the DCT) relative lack of interactivity unless doing well well over the speed limit. I've tried to cure the ride quality through a trip to Litchfield, not so successful. I think I am looking for a bit more GT and a little less Sportscar. Not quite sure where that positions me in the options, probably "S", but your AMR looks stunning.

Andy_M_

Original Poster:

34 posts

90 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all
nickv12 said:
Normally I'd say go for a VH era (up to 2018) V8 or V12S.

With the V8 from the 2012.25 MY upgrade, there was only 10bhp difference between the S and non-S, so go by spec as either can have comfort (recommended) or sport suspension, manual, SportShift II, etc.

For the V12, only the first round from 2009 were non-S manuals. The later V12S models could be either SportShift III (great 'box and very interactive, which you have to learn) or dogleg 7 speed manual. You have to try either, to know what you like and start out with an open mind.

However, here's a curveball. Last week, I visit AM Bristol and they had this very nicely spec'd current (V8) Vantage:
https://www.dicklovett.co.uk/aston-martin/used-car...

It's very rare, as it's the same 7 speed dogleg manual as found in the previous VH-era Vantage. They are no longer available as demand was too low. This car surprises me as it's quite a low cost (relatively) for its age and that it's a manual. I also think the overall leather interior with yellow stitching helps that model.

Give 'em all a go to know what you like.
Hi NIck, that's an interesting car. Is that the only AMG 4.0 V8 with a manual in any car?

Andy_M_

Original Poster:

34 posts

90 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all
Jon39 said:
Perhaps a glance through this topic, might help put your mind at rest concerning big bills.
Owners would probably not repeatedly buy another Aston Martin, if they had already faced big bills.

https://www.pistonheads.com/gassing/topic.asp?h=0&...

10 pages of repeat buyers.
Thanks Jon

Andy_M_

Original Poster:

34 posts

90 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all
mogg said:
+1. I came to my V12VS SSIII from a Lotus 410 Sport. Had it 3 years now and ran it alongside a 991.1 GT3RS which I also really enjoyed but is now gone. Can't see me changing the Aston anytime soon. There is just something about Astons that is timeless (to quote a phrase) biggrin
Thanks Mogg, two great drama cars there ... I think I want more GT with some drama, is that perhaps the Aston?

Andy_M_

Original Poster:

34 posts

90 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all
alscar said:
Andy , that 6 times being recovered was actually across 3 cars - twice on the original V8S ( non working fuel flap and then one diamond cut wheel needed work needed work ) , 3 times on the V12 - fuel flap again ,thermostat gave up , issue on oil filling post service and the newer one once when the ZBC ( drive shaft ) needed realignment.Nothing major but niggles as I said although as dailies would have been very annoying if I didn't have other cars.The fuel flap on the Gaydon cars is a well known issue and even after dealers have supposedly mended ( usually with a different spring and realignment ) they can fail again BUT knowing what I now know it wouldn't worry me as can usually get them open !

The new car was lovely to drive and felt very modern compared to the others and it didn't even sound too bad but I probably should never have replaced my V12 with it.I sold it as with Covid I just wasn't using it as wfh and there was a limit to how many cars I wanted doing nothing.

If you want a manual then no point in driving it.

I would however still recommend you try a Sportshift V12 just to see - slight curl of the toes when changing gear is all that is required to really get engaged with it although make sure you test one for more than 5 minutes.
Thanks ... I need to research the common faults. Is there a decent Buyers guide online? Looks like late V8S manual or V12S SS3 might be the ones to try first.

alscar

2,173 posts

200 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all
Andy_M_ said:
Thanks ... I need to research the common faults. Is there a decent Buyers guide online? Looks like late V8S manual or V12S SS3 might be the ones to try first.
I think Grants book is on line now - I'm traditional ( old fashioned ) so only have an older version hard copy !

alscar

2,173 posts

200 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all


And that's before you get in it.

alscar

2,173 posts

200 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all


My first Aston - not a great pic but if you can find an SP10 in good condition might be worth a look Andy.

mogg

185 posts

245 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all
alscar said:


And that's before you get in it.
Love the reg thumbup

LordBretSinclair

4,240 posts

164 months

Tuesday 14th March
quotequote all
V12S with SSIII - only way to go smile