- aston martin says it will continue to produce its v-12 engine for the next five years.
- it'll be seen in the upcoming v12 vantage, along with the replacements for the db11 and dbs.
- we won't see a v-12 in the dbx suv or in the upcoming mid-engined vanquish and valhalla supercars.
given that fewer than 50,000 12-cylinder cars are produced around the world each year (including bentley and audi’s w-12 examples), the question of which automaker will be the last to produce a v-12 engine might seem like a peripheral one. yet the fate of this aristocratic cylinder configuration is one we take a keen interest in given the number of significant cars to have used v-12s. now aston martin has confirmed it plans to keep offering its own v-12 until it is forced to stop by toughening european emissions standards. this means it will stick around for another five years, until 2026 or 2027.
this is mildly surprising given that the newly announced dbx707 will use a reworked version of the twin-turbocharged amg 4.0-liter v-8 making 697 horsepower—nearly as much as the 715 hp the twin-turbo 5.2-liter v-12 makes in the range-topping dbs. but aston ceo tobias moers says there is no logic in using the new engine to replace the v-12 in its existing applications.
“we won’t do that, the v-12 still has a bit of potential,” he said at the online unveiling of the dbx707, “and having the v12 vantage shows there is still room for a v-12 in our sports car generation.”
the new v12 vantage will be launched later this year and it will use much of the front structure developed for the v12 speedster that aston launched last year. we can also expect to see the v-12 continue in the cars that replace the current db11 and dbs, with aston insiders having confirmed that these cars will continue to use the same core structure of the current models. moers did say that there are no plans to put the v-12 in the dbx, though.
“why should i get rid of the v-12 for the time being?” moers asked. “the end of the life cycle for all these v-12s is the year 2026-2027.” that timeline corresponds to the proposed arrival of ultra-tough combustion standards in europe, including real-time emissions reporting. “we’re not going to re-engineer the v-12 to make that.”
others of the select band of v-12 manufacturers have already confirmed plans to end production of their powerplants sooner. bmw is marketing a run of final edition m760li sedans to mark the retirement of its engine. but while aston's v-12 is set to last longer than others, it is unlikely to be the final automaker with one in production: lamborghini has confirmed the aventador replacement will be launched with a hybridized naturally aspirated v-12, one with a lifespan that will run into the 2030s.
moers also confirmed that the vanquish and valhalla mid-engined supercars aston are developing won’t use the v-12, with both set to use versions of a v-8 based around the amg gt black series' flat-plane-crank v-8. this will be hand-built by the british company in the u.k. he also said this hybridized powerplant will come in both two- and three-motor configurations, with the latter using a pair of electric motors on the front axle capable of torque vectoring, like the ferrari sf90 stradale.