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656bhp Aston Martin Vantage revealed as the official F1 safety car for 2024

By Mathilda Bartholomew | March 5, 2024

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Aston Martin's Latest Formula One Safety Car: A Faster, More Powerful Upgrade

656bhp Aston Martin Vantage revealed as the official F1 safety car for 2024

The unveiling of the new Aston Martin Vantage road car has ushered in a revamped generation of the Formula One safety car from the iconic British brand. This upgrade promises enhanced power and improved aerodynamics, addressing concerns raised by three-time champion Max Verstappen after the 2022 Australian Grand Prix.

Verstappen had criticised the previous Aston Martin Vantage safety car for its perceived sluggishness compared to the Mercedes-AMG GT Black Series used in certain races. Describing the Vantage as a "turtle," Verstappen's critique found support in timing data, revealing a nearly five-second lag behind the Mercedes-AMG GT at specific circuits.

In response, Aston Martin has upgraded its Formula One safety car following the recent launch of the new Vantage sports car. Mirroring the enhancements seen in the road car, the new Aston Martin Formula One safety car boasts significant performance improvements.

The 2025 Vantage boasts a hand-built 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 engine, delivering a remarkable 30% increase in power compared to its predecessor. With an additional 153 hp and 85 lb-ft of torque, it now reaches a total of 656 hp and 590 lb-ft (800 Nm) of pulling power. Equipped with an 8-speed ZF automatic transmission, the new Vantage accelerates to 60 mph in just 3.4 seconds and reaches a top speed of 202 mph (325 kph).

It now generates a notable increase of 114kW and 115Nm compared to its predecessor. While it matches the torque outputs of the GT Black Series, it remains 48kW shy of the track-focused Mercedes.

Unlike its predecessor, which closely resembled the road-going version, the new safety car features a larger front splitter and a deep rear wing, aimed at maintaining higher corner speeds.

Internally, Recaro Pole Position seats, a tailored centre console housing essential buttons and switches, and multiple screens displaying lap times and GPS data have been incorporated.

The upgraded Aston Martin Vantage safety car is set to debut at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix in Jeddah, rotating throughout the season with the aforementioned Mercedes-AMG. This evolution aims to provide a faster and more powerful safety car, addressing the concerns raised by Verstappen and enhancing its overall performance on the Formula One circuit.

Bernd Maylander, the FIA Safety Car driver, noted “It is a pleasure to drive the Aston Martin. The car comes from an incredible bloodline and this newest version is the fastest yet,”

“My first impressions were very positive as I could immediately feel the improvement in handling and, of course, power. We need a car that is fast and focused so we can respond quickly and safely when we receive the call for on-track deployment and Vantage provides that.”

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