News/ Industry/ Aston Martin DB12 Volante | James Bond would love it !

Aston Martin DB12 Volante | James Bond would love it !

The recently unveiled DB12 Volante is a testimony to Aston Martin's reputation for producing stylish convertibles. The DB12 drop-top model debuts three months after its coupe counterpart, sacrificing the V12 option of the DB11 Volante in exchange for a fresh exterior and an updated interior with modern electronics.

The Aston Martin DB12 Volante maintains its predecessors' distinctive fabric reclining roof, appealing to aficionados who like driving in the open air. Notably, when the top is tucked away under the hard tonneau cover, revealing the luxurious inside materials and emphasizing the seductive tail, the convertible has even more alluring proportions than the coupe.

At top speeds of 50 km/h (31 mph), the electrically controlled cloth roof opens and closes in 14 and 16 seconds, respectively. Two stages of folding are used, producing a stack height of 260 mm that doesn't significantly reduce the cargo capacity. Contrary to common assumption, convertibles are allegedly quieter than coupes because of the roof's "acoustically enhanced" construction with eight layers of insulation.

Although "black and silver" and red, blue, and black are all alternative roof colours, there are endless combinations possible with the exterior paint colours and interior upholstery choices. The basic roof colour is black. The seatbacks of the Volante can be ordered with wood veneer and panels made of carbon fibre that match the door trim inlay, unlike the ones in the Coupe. Speaking of customization choices, owners may take things a step further by paying extra to use the Q by Aston Martin division.

The next-generation infotainment system from Aston Martin, which was created in-house and includes all of the newest connection technologies, is the interior's standout. The audio system is connected to Bowers & Wilkins audio systems that come with 11 speakers (390 Watt) as standard or 15 speakers (1,170 Watt) as an option and is incorporated into the new 10.25-inch Pure Black touchscreen.

Like the DB12 Coupe, the Volante only has a twin-turbo 4.0-litre V8 engine from AMG that makes 671 horsepower (500 kW/ 680 PS) and 590 lb-ft (800 Nm) of torque. An electronic rear differential (E-Diff) helps an 8-speed ZF automatic transmission transfer this power to the back axle.

The convertible GT matches the hardtop model's highest speed of 325 km/h (202 mph) while accelerating from 0 to 100 km/h (0 to 62 mph) in 3.7 seconds, only 0.1 seconds slower than the coupe. We anticipate a plug-in hybrid option in the future, which will probably provide more power and performance compared to the non-electrified V8.

The DB12 Volante's bonded aluminium frame is an improved version of the one utilized by the DB11. Compared to the coupe, structural enhancements result in a 5% improvement in torsional stiffness. As with the rear spring rates, the new adaptive dampers are configured specifically for convertibles. Aston Martin's Chief Technical Officer, Roberto Fedeli, claims that the DB12 Volante no longer qualifies as "the softer option" in the lineup and instead provides "class-leading performance and handling" in this regard.

Behind the basic cast-iron discs, which measure 400 mm (15.8 inches) in the front and 360 mm (14.2 inches) at the back, are the usual 21-inch forged alloy wheels wrapped in custom Michelin Pilot S 5 tires. These can optionally be exchanged for carbon ceramic brakes, which minimize fade and cut the unsprung bulk by 27 kg (60 lbs).

This weekend at The Quail, as part of the Monterey Car Week in California, the Aston Martin DB12 Volante will make its official premiere to the general public. The third quarter of 2023 will see the start of drop-top model manufacturing, with the fourth quarter seeing the beginning of deliveries. Are you waiting for James Bond to drop his comments on it?

TopGear Magazine May 2024