AutoGuide News Blog
The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
We’re not sure what it is about car crashes that fascinates us – so long as they don’t happen to us. We just love (and hate) watching videos of them occurring, and this one involves a remarkable Aston Martin Rapide on a public road.
The driver is Italian surf board designer Roberto Ricci, while the passenger, who captured the entire incident on video, is Mpora editor Dave White. It appears that Ricci turned off the Rapide’s stability control rather than hitting the “Sport” mode button and as a result, loses control of the car while on an exit ramp. The Rapide clearly slamms into a guardrail but none of the airbags deploy.
Fortunately after the accident both White and Ricci do not appear to have sustained any injuries, which is surprising considering how demolished the Rapide is.
Check out the video of the crash after the break – may be NSFW due to language.
A parade of some of the world’s most exotic and expensive cars turned into a serious game of bumper cars after a dim witted motorist drove her $468,000 Bentley Azure into several other exotics outside the Place du Casino in Monte Carlo.
The driver smashed her car into a $140,000 Mercedes-Benz S class. After hitting the Benz, the driver didn’t brake quickly enough and hit a $262,000 Ferrari F430, a $149,000 Porsche 911 and a $262,000 Aston Martin Rapide. The total value of the cars involved in the accident is over $1.2 million. The unfortunate reality of getting into a car accident in a city like Monte Carlo is the vast amount of tourists who are not afraid to snap off photos. Despite the combined value of the cars involved in the accident, the cost of repairs is expected to reach somewhere around 70,000.
Gallery: Monaco Crash
[Source: Herald Sun]
Prestige automaker Aston Martin has confirmed that it will be moving production of it’s four-door super sedan, the Rapide from the Magna Steyr facilities in Graz, Austria, to Gaydon, Warwickshire, in the United Kingdom.
The move comes as facility restrictions at Gaydon, in place when Rapide production originally began have now been lifted.
According to AM’s CEO Dr. Ulrich Betz, “ things are very different (from 2008) – Gaydon is more established, more flexible and more efficient. While our overall volume has not changed significantly, we now produce a far richer model mix – eight model lines (plus five variants) compared to three model lines (plus two variants) in 2008 – so Rapide production is now possible.”
Betz went on to thank Magna Steyr and its employees for developing a very strong working relationship with Aston Martin, while helping the firm set “benchmark quality” standards for Rapide production.
Production of AM’s four-door is scheduled to begin at the Gaydon facility in the second half of next year.
Aston Martin is reportedly working on a Rapide S, which will be much faster than the current Rapide, via a heart transplant involving the DBS’s 510-hp engine. The current Rapide is by no means a slow car. Powered by a 6.0-liter V12 engine producing 470-hp and 443 lb-ft of torque, the Rapide is capable of 0-60mph in 5.1 seconds with a top speed of 188mph.
However the time has come to intoduce a much faster, sportier model. The Rapide S will also feature carbon-ceramic brake discs as standard and firmer suspension settings. The Rapide S will arrive later this year and will definetly feature a nice price bump.
Stay tuned for more info!
Discuss this story at AstonMartinForum.com
To help Japan recover from the recent earthquake and tsunami many foreign companies have donated to relief charities. Aston Martin is the latest to contribute. It’s Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Ulrich Bez is giving up his personal Rapide super-sedan at the Bonhams Auction at Newport Pagnell, with all proceeds going to Japan.
He said; “Nobody could have failed to be moved by the recent events in Japan and we at Aston Martin are no exception. After many years presence in the market and closer ties being forged with the Japanese automotive business in recent projects, we have many friends in the region and we wanted to do something to help. The Bonhams Aston Martin Auction seems the perfect platform to encourage the extended Aston Martin family to support this cause, so we have decided to auction my Rapide which I have used in my role as Chief Executive to represent Aston Martin at numerous events in both UK and Europe. I hope this superb car will raise a substantial amount to help make a difference.”
This well appointed, V12 luxury car will hit the auction stage on May 21. The new owner will get a great car and help a great cause at the same time.
Aston Martin has just established its first foothold in India, with its first showroom in Mumbai. The showroom will be managed in partnership with Infinity Cars Pvt. Ltd., a well known local distributor, with a location in a swanky district of Mumbai known as Kemps Corner.
“India represents a new opportunity for us and as part of our programme of growing the reach of the global Aston Martin dealership network; this expansion brings our brand to a different audience in a new market,” Aston Martin’s Chief Commercial Officer, Michael van der Sande said in a statement. “Our decision to bring the Aston Martin brand to India is driven by a strong level of interest and enthusiasm from potential customers in an emerging luxury market. We have taken our time to find the right advocates for Aston Martin and I am confident that we have selected strong partners with whom we look forward to starting a successful relationship,” he said.
Although Aston Martin will offer a full range of vehicles in India, the roads there are in such rough shape, we’re not exactly sure where these cars can be driven. Perhaps some track days at New Delhi’s Grand Prix circuit are in order.
Aston Martin‘s Rapide sedan is already one of the most striking luxury four-doors on the market, with a bent more towards the sporty side of the equation. But Aston’s newest Luxe packing will swing the pendulum the in the opposite direction, emphasising comfort and coddling over outright speed.
The Luxe package will give buyers a choice of exclusive paint hues (including Concours Blue or the James Bond-esque Quantum Silver), a rear seat DVD system, custom luggage outfitted to match your Rapide’s interior, and switchgear made of glass. Sounds delicate.
[Source: Aston Martin]
With Porsche and Aston Martin making headway with their Panamera and Rapide four-door coupes, Lamborghini is apparently open to the idea of a four door sedan coupe similar to their Estoque concept car.
CEO Stephan Winkelmann is reported as saying to journalists that “a third model would fit Lamborghini very well”, and “a four-door car would be a very feasible approach.” But with the Estoque originally shelved in 2009 and sales down 18 percent versus last year.
The Estoque would need to give Lamborghini “a real leap” in sales for the company to justify the investment. While the four door coupe segment is currently on fire, there’s no telling whether the sector will continue to be hot, and a poorly timed introduction could spell doom for Lamborghini.
Shown for the first time on U.S. soil, Aston Martin had on display a racing version of its new Rapide four-door at The Quail. One of the lead-up events to the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, The Quail puts the emphasis on motorsports, and what better way to do so than with this four-door race car straight from its inaugural session at the grueling Nürburgring 24 Hour race.
Powered by a 5.9-liter V12, this Aston placed second in the SP8 class for mostly stock vehicles, besting even the V12 Vantage! The Rapide would likely have won, were it not for the Lexus LFA, which took top spot in that class.
Aston hasn’t announced any additional plans to race the car, but here’s hoping we’ll see one some time in the future, trading paint in the World Challenge, Grand Am or ALMS series.
GALLERY: Aston Martin Rapide Race Car
For the fifth year in a row Aston Martin will take part in the annual Nürburgring 24 Hour endurance race, but for 2010 the team’s entry will have four-doors. That’s right, the all-new Rapide sedan will be stripped down to its bare essentials to compete in a class for mostly stock vehicles. Aston says more details on the car will be released in the coming weeks, but that major modifications are to be limited to a re-turned suspension, safety gear and racing slick tires.
The past two years, Aston has competed in the SP8 class for and won the past two years, running a V12 Vantage last year.
“The Rapide has the capability to carry four people in comfort but first and foremost it is a sports car and we will subject it to the same tests we would our other sports cars,” said CEO Dr. Ulrich Bez, who will once again get behind the wheel to compete, along with a tea of factory drivers.
The Nürburgring 24 Hour Race takes place from May 15th to 16th and we’ll be sure to keep an eye on the action.
Official release after the jump:
The Aston Martin Rapide took a long time to finally come to market and it seems like it’s taken almost just as long to go on public display. First shown in concept form at the Detroit Auto Show way back in 2006, the Rapide had its world premiere at the Frankfurt Auto Show last Fall. Since then both the LA and Detroit shows have come and gone, with Aston a no-show. Finally, North Americans (or at least New Yorkers) will get their first look at the Rapide when it goes on public display at the NY Auto Show in April.
Powered by an incredible 5.9-liter V12 engine that makes 470-hp at 6000 rpm and 443 ft-lbs of torque at 5000 rpm, the four-door Rapide is offered exclusively with a six-speed automatic transmission. It gets Aston’s typically long front-snout and an ultra luxurious interior. Pricing for the new model starts at $199,950 ($215,000 CAD), vastly higher than segment rivals the Maserati Quattroporte and Porsche Panamera, ensuring exclusivity.
AutoGuide will bring you more on the Rapide with live coverage of the New York Auto Show starting March 31st.
In the mean time, browse through the massive gallery of photos below.
GALLERY: Aston Martin Rapide
Aston Martin has just announced that its new four-door model, the Rapide, is officially on sale with pricing starting at $199,950 ($215,000 CAD). The cost for the four-seater is vastly higher than segment rivals the Maserati Quattroporte and Porsche Panamera. The Quattroporte starts at $119,750 and tops out at 133,700, while the 500-hp Panamera ranges in price from $89,900 to $132,600. Plus, the Rapide will be offered with plenty of exclusive upgrades.
Under the hood of the Rapide is a powerful 5.9-liter V12 engine that makes 470-hp at 6000 rpm with 443 ft-lbs of torque at 5000 rpm. The Rapide will be offered exclusively with a six-speed automatic transmission.
As for the design of the car, it’s all Aston up front and even the rear maintains Aston’s signature subtle duck-tail spoiler, which is integrated into the rear hatch. And of course, all four doors flip slightly upward, just like the rest of the Aston fleet. The cabin of the car seats four with 10.6 cubic feet of space behind the rear seats or 26.5 cubic feet with the rear seats folded down.
Unlike all past Astons, the Rapide will not be manufactured in Great Britain, but in Graz, Austria.
GALLERY: Aston Martin Rapide
Official release after the jump:
It’s hard to believe it’s been three years since Aston Martin first unveiled the Rapide Concept at the 2006 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit. Despite the lengthy delay in getting this sporty sedan to market, Aston has consistently reiterated its commitment to the swoopy saloon and now the company has finally released the first photos of the production model Rapide.
With signature Aston Martin good looks, the Rapide will go up agaisnt vehicles like Porsche’s Panamera.
Up front the lower air intake is just one large unit as opposed to the several smaller ones on the concept car. From a profile it looks very much the same, as it does from the rear – where the hatchback aspect has been retained.
Based on the DB9′s platform, the Rapide has a 10-inch longer wheel base and is 2.5-inches taller. Both of these changes make the rear passenger area liveable and allow for the swooping roof-line to not impede the comfort of the rear passengers. The Rapide will be a 2+2, with no space for a third passenger in the rear.
The vehicle will be powered by a familiar 6.0-liter V12 engine with an output of 480hp and will feature a six-speed automatic tranmsission with Aston’s new Touchtronic manual shift mode.
In total the sedan will weight 287lbs more than the DB9 for a total of roughly 4,275. All that heft should retard performance, but only slightly. We expect a 0-60 mph time in the mid 4-second range.
Reportedly, the Rapide will officially be unveiled at the Frankfurt of LA Auto Shows but there is also a slight possibiity it will emerge at the Geneva Auto Show in March.
Official Rapide Concept Car release after the jump: