Aston Martin V8 Roadster
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- Just beautiful
- Hearing that V8
- Incredibly desirable
- Expensive to run
- Not that practical
- Rivals are faster
This V8 Vantage Roadster gets superb reviews, all the experts are impressed by it. It's a seriously good looking car, the 4.7 V8 engine suits it perfectly and it's a lot of fun to drive. It isn't quite perfect though, it hasn't got a big boot and there are rivals which are quicker.
Aston Martin has a knack of making cars with that “want” factor. The V8 Roadster is another car that’s so beautiful you wouldn’t really care if it drove like a shopping trolley with a wonky wheel and had the engine from a moped. Only it doesn’t - it drives excellently and has one of the world’s most charismatic V8s. Hence the rather high buzzScore…
Like other current Aston Martins, the V8 Roadster’s only real cabin problems are of an ergonomic nature. The basic driving position is rarely criticised, but some of the controls are badly positioned. Quality is as good as you’d expect though, and it looks pleasant enough. Oh, and there’s that thick, cosy hood, which can be dropped in a matter of seconds to allow better aural access to that V8. That might be best for taller drivers, who may find head room a little limiting with the roof up.
Critics say that the V8 Roadster is more physical to drive than you expect of many luxury convertibles, but that’s part of the charm. There’s lots of steering feel, and testers say the body still feels rigid despite the lack of a roof - sometimes a concern with roadsters. Ride and refinement are also very good.
As the “V8” in “Aston Martin V8 Roadster” suggests, there’s only the one engine here - but that’s hardly a bad thing. We could let the numbers do the talking: 4.7 litres in capacity, 8 cylinders, and 420 horsepower, which translates to around 4.7 seconds to 60mph and a top speed of 180mph. But concentrating on numbers alone does’t replicate the “war-like” sound described by one tester, nor the experience of the extra power over its predecessor. Circa-20mpg economy might put off some… but we doubt it.
Value for money
With a non-Sportshift, non-S Aston V8 Roadster costing just over £100,000, this isn’t a cheap car. Value for money depends on how you rate certain aspects of the car. It’s more than a 911 convertible would be, but looks prettier. It’s also more of a looker than the Ferrari California, and cheaper too. It's a little more expensive than an Audi R8 Spyder… but has a better badge. Swings and roundabouts…
If for some reason you think the V8 Roadster is neither quick enough, nor loud enough, nor deft enough, then you might want to tick the box for the Vantage S, which has a few subtle tweaks to improve the car still further. And it’s still gorgeous. Sportshift is Aston Martin’s paddleshift option, and there are few complaints about it.
General consensus from reviews seems to suggest that the V8 Roadster is the best car Aston Martin currently produces. Given the level of competition within the Aston range, that’s quite an accolade. Have a read of the reviews, or even just stare at the pictures - and tell us you don’t want one…
- Price range:
- £96,309 - £112,509
- 20 - 22
- Date released:
- Replacement due:
- Likely not for a couple of years
- Model history:
- In 2008 the V8 Vantage Roadster was updated with a new engine. In 2012 the V8 Roadster got a facelift, full details here - 2012 Aston Martin V8 Roadster Facelift