RE: Aston Martin Rapide: PH Used Buying Guide

RE: Aston Martin Rapide: PH Used Buying Guide

Thursday 9th August

Aston Martin Rapide: PH Used Buying Guide

In the market for a fast luxury four door that's not a Panamera? Aston has just the car



The Rapide should have been the car that took Aston Martin to a wider audience and considerably higher sales. It wasn’t to be, though, as the Rapide launched just as a global recession gripped and it didn’t help that many potential buyers found the Porsche Panamera, Maserati Quattroporte and Bentley Mulsanne more practical.

Yet the Rapide was a good car straight out of the blocks. Originally built by Magna Steyr in Austria, the four-door was made to a very high standard and suffered none of the teething troubles that had blighted the DB9. Reliability was, and is, strong, to make the Rapide a good choice for the long distance driving it was designed for.

Variable damping offered normal and firmer settings, alongside a Sport button for the six-speed automatic transmission. In its default standard setup, the Aston could deal with poor road surfaces very well while still providing good body control to make it engaging to drive. Excellent steering and ideal weight distribution thanks to the transaxle gearbox were big plusses, with only some road noise letting the side down. With the transmission and suspension in sportier modes, the Rapide delivered a more focused drive that edged it very close to its DBS coupe sister.


In 2011, Aston Martin moved Rapide production back to Gaydon from Austria as it had spare capacity in the UK factory, so it made sense to reduce costs from outsourcing build to Magna Steyr. Then, in 2014, the Rapide S succeeded the earlier car with a new eight-speed transmission and power increased to 560hp. That knocked half a second from the 0-62mph time, so it now needed only 4.2 seconds, while top speed went from 190mph to 203mph. There was also a small benefit to fuel economy and CO2 emissions.

New rear suspension bushes further improved the handling of Aston’s four-door hatch, but sales have always been a trickle rather than the hoped-for torrent. While several rivals offer more rear seat space and larger boots, the Rapide can accommodate two adults in the back and the individual chairs fold forwards to leave a long though shallow load space.

As a minority interest, the Rapide serves up an opportunity for used buyers as prices are now down to £45,000 for an early car with around 40,000 miles. Seek out the S and you’ll pay from £60,000, which has to be one of the most affordable ways to hit 200mph while taking three friends along.


Buyer's checklist

Bodywork and interior
Britax makes a bespoke child seat to fit the rear chairs of the Rapide to make the most of the available room. It costs £120 including an Isofix base.

Take a long look at the bodywork, especially the panel edges, as the aluminium can bubble underneath the paint.

A specialist inspection will be needed to check the underside of the Rapide as the protective panels have to be removed to check the condition of the underbody.

Check the rear cabin and boot for damage to trim and leather.


Engine and transmission

The V12 has suffered from oil starvation issues in other Aston models, though there are no reported problems in the Rapide, so just keep an eye on the oil level.

Check for any signs of oil leaking from the cam covers.

Servicing is every 10,000 miles or 12 months. A major service comes at 70,000 miles.

Eight-speed auto replaced the six-speeder in 2014. Recall in 2014 for a chrome-plated transmission switch that reacts with the printed circuit board to cause the gearbox to go into neutral with no warning or driver input.

Recall for a fault Park mode in the gearbox that can let the car roll when parked caused by a communication error between the Engine Control Module and Transmission Control Module.


Suspension and steering

Adaptive dampers can begin to leak and replacing a full set will cost £4,000. Make sure the car selects each damping mode during a test drive.

Wheels, tyres and brakes

Brakes and tyres get worked harder on the Rapide than a DB9 as the saloon weight 190kg more. The front discs are larger than the DB9’s, with new rotors and pads coming in at £600 plus fitting.


SPECIFICATION – ASTON MARTIN RAPIDE/RAPIDE S

Engine: 5,935cc V12
Transmission: Six/eight-speed auto
Power (hp): 477/560@/6,000/6,750rpm
Torque (lb ft): 443/457@5,000/5,500rpm
MPG: 19.0/19.8
CO2: 355/332g/km
Price new: £140,000/£147,950
Price now: £45,000/£60,000 upwards








Author
Discussion

V41LEY

Original Poster:

2,396 posts

174 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
Nice at these prices. Looking forward to hearing owners experiences.
Is one of the photos showing a faulty dash display ?

big_peaches

420 posts

132 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
could just be the LED ( PWM ) being caught mid pulse. a bit like modern car lights in high frame rate videos, they use LEDs with a pulsed supply

LaurasOtherHalf

14,075 posts

132 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
Occasionally see one of these parked up at work-looks beautiful. If I had the means, I think I quite possibly would.

Jonny TVR

2,180 posts

217 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
I believe the space in the back is less than a Maserati Granturismo albeit the rapide has 4 doors. You do think sod the kids lets get a proper Aston .. it does look a bit ungainly in the flesh I feel.

ruhall

252 posts

82 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
I thought that the first 'S's still had the 6-speed gearbox?


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saxy

132 posts

60 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
Damn, I wanted to make a cheeky joke about it but it looks really good

SFO

4,631 posts

119 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
stunningly beautiful cars .. will be a classic Aston in future IMO

Mr E

18,292 posts

195 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
Genuinely looks like good value

Shiv_P

1,430 posts

41 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
Looks great but isn't the rear leg space ste?

Krikkit

13,521 posts

117 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
V41LEY said:
Nice at these prices. Looking forward to hearing owners experiences.
Is one of the photos showing a faulty dash display ?
It's the TFT refresh rate and the camera's fast shutter chopping the image.

Ursicles

764 posts

178 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
Didnt realise these were £40k...

Def thrown a spanner in the works as to next car decision!

kambites

55,407 posts

157 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
What on earth is taking up all that space under the boot floor? There must be a good 18 inches between the boot floor and the underside of the car!

The boot looks barely bigger than my Elises's. silly

VitorioVeloce

4,294 posts

79 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
Not a bad looking car, but would you honestly buy one of these over a quattroporte? I know i wouldnt..

DaveCWK

993 posts

110 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
Wierdly I saw my first one a few weeks ago (on middle East plates near Farnborough). How many did they sell in the UK?

RobDown

3,023 posts

64 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
VitorioVeloce said:
Not a bad looking car, but would you honestly buy one of these over a quattroporte? I know i wouldnt..
Of course you would (and I did, albeit the car has moved on now to make space for something else) - and I suspect most would if they realised how cheap they've become second hand. Apart from anything else its well built rather than minging/tinny has a 'proper' engine (a 6 litre v12 sounds somewhat better than an often diesel powered Maser) and its an Aston Martin, not an upmarket Fiat

The downside to the Rapide is that it's large, so tight spirals in the multi-story car park are a pain. The upside is the speed, its still a pretty car (albeit not quite as well proportioned as a DB9) but it also has a dash of practicality, with the rear seats folded there's plenty of luggage space for trips to the South of France.

When unfolded the rear seats are perfectly good for adults (I'm 6ft 1), the sills are a little high though so its not one to chauffeur in. And I would guess that we're now seeing the car towards the bottom end of its depreciation curve (I'd guess the Quattroporte goes to zero...)

Richair

1,019 posts

133 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
kambites said:
What on earth is taking up all that space under the boot floor? There must be a good 18 inches between the boot floor and the underside of the car!

The boot looks barely bigger than my Elises's. silly
I suspect the transmission, as Aston Martin do like a mid-mounted transaxle. Although I couldn't find much technical info about the Rapide with a quick Google search...

ParanoidAndroid

1,235 posts

219 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
I've been watching these for a while now, you'll struggle to get a AM used approved in the £40k region, more like early £50k but they are definitely dropping. I like the fact that for me with a 2 year old son it would make it quite usable assuming his car seat would go in the back. Obvious rival is the Maserati Gran Tourismo, Maser has more space but I think the Aston would actually be cheaper to run!

Other problem for me is I'm not sure I could turn up at customer sites/work in an Aston, so would need another more mundane daily which kind of defeats the object of it.



kambites

55,407 posts

157 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
Richair said:
I suspect the transmission, as Aston Martin do like a mid-mounted transaxle. Although I couldn't find much technical info about the Rapide with a quick Google search...
Ah if it has a transaxle that's possible I suppose. smile

ruhall

252 posts

82 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
RobDown said:
VitorioVeloce said:
Not a bad looking car, but would you honestly buy one of these over a quattroporte? I know i wouldnt..
Of course you would (and I did, albeit the car has moved on now to make space for something else) - and I suspect most would if they realised how cheap they've become second hand. Apart from anything else its well built rather than minging/tinny has a 'proper' engine (a 6 litre v12 sounds somewhat better than an often diesel powered Maser) and its an Aston Martin, not an upmarket Fiat

Exactly. I recently called in to a Maserati dealer whilst on holiday and they had ONE petrol car, and everything else was diesel. Not what I was expecting.

SFO

4,631 posts

119 months

Thursday 9th August
quotequote all
never understood the appeal of a Maserati, apart from the name.

the cars are nothing more than tarted up and over expensive Fiats