Aston Martin Vanquish Review

The Vanquish is a performance GT car produced until 2018.

£104,021
Average price
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2
Out of 5

Pros

  • Stunning design
  • Fantastic engine
  • Comfortable

Cons

  • Poor infotainment system
  • Expensive running costs
  • Small boot and rear seats
  • MPG

    0 - 0

  • CO2

    0 - 0 g/km

Model review

Aston Martin has a fantastic history for producing stunning GT cars, and it added another to the collection in 2001 with the Vanquish. Designed by legendary car designer Ian Callum - who went on to pen some incredibly stylish Jaguars - it was the brand’s most advanced car yet at its launch, featuring state-of-the-art tech (at the time) including F1-style gear shifters and a drive-by-wire throttle control. 

It was applauded by the motoring press at the time, with its 460bhp 6.0-litre V12 being a key highlight. Though at the time the Vanquish exclusively came with an automatic gearbox, more recently Aston Martin’s classic ‘Works’ division has offered an option to retrofit a manual gearbox – something 130 customers have chosen to do already. 

Making its debut in September 2004 was the V12 Vanquish S, which thanks to its 520bhp engine, was the brand’s fastest production car to date. Alongside increased power, it benefitted from subtle suspension and steering changes, as well as light design revisions. In February 2007, Aston Martin announced it was ending production at its Newport Pagnell factory – where the Vanquish was produced – with an end-of-run Ultimate Edition, which was limited to just 40 units. 

Latest model

Aston Martin replaced the original Vanquish with the 2008 DBS, but at the discontinuation of that model, the Vanquish nameplate returned in 2012 in a striking new model. Using a ‘significantly upgraded’ version of the 6.0-litre V12 engine, it offered peak power of 565bhp.

A convertible Volante model was launched the following year, bringing further enjoyment to the Vanquish package, while a host of special editions would follow – including those marking Aston Martin’s centenary, the Red Arrows and unique versions created with Italian design house Zagato. 

The second-generation Vanquish S launched in 2017, turning the power up to 592bhp, while using a revised gearbox alongside a raft of mechanical changes. Like the original, the Vanquish finished up production in 2018 with an ‘Ultimate’, which was limited to 175 cars and came finished in three striking paint schemes and three interior themes. 

The Vanquish was replaced by the DBS Superleggera in 2018. 

Value for money

As Aston Martin’s flagship model, the Vanquish unsurprisingly doesn’t come cheap. At its launch in 2018, it was priced from an eye-watering £190,000, while at the close of production in 2018 the Vanquish S Ultimate cost £224,000. We’re clearly talking big bucks, but the Vanquish does well to justify it with its stunning performance and design. 

But used Vanquish models are incredibly appealing, with immaculate second-generation cars available for around £70,000 – still a lot of money, but a vast saving on the original list price. Convertible Volante versions command noticeably higher prices and start from around £90.000, The ‘S’ versions are the most desirable, though, and at the time of writing there wasn’t an example for sale for less than £135,000. 

Looks and image

The Vanquish is as quintessential as Aston Martins come, and it remains an incredibly sleek and classy-looking GT car to this day. With its long, extended bonnet and elegant lines, it’s a stunning piece of design. The ‘S’ versions meanwhile bring a racier look thanks to its carbon fibre roof, larger rear splitter and prominent rear diffuser. All these tweaks enable it to be distinguished from the standard car without being quite as shouty as a Ferrari or Lamborghini. 

Moving inside, the Vanquish’s interior largely feels very upmarket, with all cars coming with quilted leather seats and Alcanatara headlining, all of which helps make it feel particularly luxurious. The infotainment and switchgear lets the side down, though, with the main screen feeling outdated and being poor to use. 

Key to the appeal here is Aston Martin’s legendary V12 engine, which produces a simply glorious soundtrack and allows for rapid acceleration. This is a proper GT car too, with a very comfortable ride – an area some rivals fall short. It really is a car you can cross continents with and feel relaxed at the other side in. 

Space and practicality

Aston Martin bills the Vanquish as a ‘2+2’, which is essentially an acknowledgement that the rear seats are only for occasional use. They’re really best kept for children, though Aston Martin did offer a no-cost option to remove the rear seats entirely – something worth checking when you’re looking at used examples. 

The boot also measures a respectable 368 litres, which Aston Martin says allows space for two sets of golf clubs. This space is also an impressive 60 per cent larger than the DBS it replaced. 

Engines 

As we’ve mentioned several times, the Vanquish uses a 6.0-litre V12 engine. Models originally came with a six-speed automatic, but from late 2014 onwards it moved to a smoother eight-speed transmission. 

The standard Vanquish produced 565bhp and 620Nm of torque, which allowed for a 0-60mph time of 3.9 seconds and a claimed top speed of 183mph. 

The ‘S’ version saw its figures increase to 595bhp and 630Nm of torque. This reduced the 0-60mph time to just 3.3 seconds, while increasing the top speed of 201mph, where permitted. 

Running costs

It shouldn’t come as any huge surprise but the Vanquish will be a very expensive car to run. In terms of efficiency, Aston Martin claims it will return just 22.1mpg, while CO2 emissions are very high at 298g/km.

It sits in the most expensive insurance group too (50), while will cost you a steep £630 in annual car tax too. 

Things to look out for

There are a few key things to look out for if you're buying a used Vanquish. Starting out with the engine, look out for any misfires caused by tired plugs and coils. Check the oil level is correct too, as low levels could be a sign of large problems. 

The brake discs and pads need changing around every 20,000 miles, and can be an expensive job, so it’s worth seeing if a previous owner has had this done recently. Finally, check the front and rear subframes for corrosion, as this is quite common. 

Rivals

In terms of rivals, the Bentley Continental GT is high up in terms of competition, with Ferrari’s F12 serving as a true supercar rival. Other choices you could consider are the Mercedes-AMG S63 Coupe and Porsche 911

Depreciation

The Vanquish has been quite heavily hit by depreciation. However, we expect values to remain quite firm now – particularly for the later Vanquish S models. This will undoubtedly be a collector’s favourite in the future. 

Trims explained

There were two main versions of the Vanquish offered – the standard car and the ‘S’. Equipment highlights and prices are as follows.

Vanquish –

All Vanquish models get loads of equipment as standard, including bi-xenon headlights, LED rear lights, a full-grain leather interior with electric, heated and memory front seats. You also get cruise control, front and rear parking sensors, electric folding mirrors and a UK tracker. Other equipment includes a 13-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system and a 6.5-inch infotainment screen with satellite navigation.

from £70,000 (used)

Vanquish S –

Tweaks for the Vanquish S included a new aerodynamic package, which features a revised front splitter, rear diffuser and exposed carbon fibre roof. New quad exhausts were also fitted, while mechanical changes included – but are not limited to – the suspension, anti-roll bars and Touchtronic gearbox.

from £135,000 (used)

Summary

  1. Aston Martin V12 GT car
  2. First-generation sold between 2001 and 2007…
  3. Before returning again between 2012 and 2018
  4. Stunning engine
  5. Luxurious interior…
  6. Though some switchgear is quite poor
  7. Compromised rear seat room
  8. Impressively comfortable
  9. Later ‘S’ models are the most desirable
  10. One of Aston Martin’s true greats

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