27 October, 2018

Aston Martin Valkyrie - 50 Years in The Making?

After being given an inkling of the Mercedes AMG ONE's power, it's not out of the question to suggest it's unbeatable. For starters, it does have a Formula 1 car engine. However, there is an endless list of challenges. You can read more about it here: Mercedes AMG ONE - The End of the Holy Trinity? 

This type of talk can invigorate Adrian Newey, the car design genius who has won 10 Constructors' titles in Formula 1. Yearning for a new challenge, he recognised the dream he'd been harbouring since he was a child.

The prospect of designing a road car overwhelmed a curious Newey during his contract negotiations and Red Bull Racing. After speaking with the owner, Dietrich Mateschitz and team principal, Christian Horner, he started sketching during the F1 Summer Break and the Valkyrie started to come to life.

Is this car 50 years in the making? Let's take a look at the latest assault on the Holy Trinity of Hypercars.

Aston Martin Valkyrie Design

Racing series like Formula 1 conform to a set of standards which set the technical rules for cars. The Aston Martin Valkyrie is free from such stringent regulation and enables a creative like Newey to keep his original vision which is to make the fastest road car he possibly can. 

The first thing you'll notice is the aggressive styled exterior. Every mm of this car has an aerodynamic purpose and the inside wasn't spared. What they did was use pod-like seats which nestle the driver and passenger into the car.

Aston Martin wants to utilise Red Bull's experience in Formula 1 by utilising their technology and ensuring the Valkyrie is as close as it can be to an F1 car but road-legal.

The three people making this car a reality are Adrian, David and Marek. David is responsible for the budget, Marek is there to ensure it looks everything Aston and Adrian is the brainchild.

Every car has its challenges and for the Valkyrie, it was creating a car that withstands the colossal amounts of downforce and also become nimble when navigating corners. Using the guiding principles of being light, simple and pure, this became one of the biggest challenges of their careers. 

How fast is it?

Aston Martin Valkyrie Performance

Cosworth is building the engine and they want to create the most powerful naturally aspirated engine in the world. The engine of choice is a 6.5L V12 engine. Originally, a twin-turbo V6 was evaluated but issues with placement and cooling lead to the V12 being chosen.

Trivia - a naturally aspirated engine will intake air without the assistance of a turbo or supercharger etc.

  • BHP: 1130. 
  • Engine: V12.
  • 0-60 time: 2.5 sec.
  • Top Speed: 250 mph.
  • Price - £2m-£3m.
  • Production - 150 Road, 25 Track.

A performance target for the Valkyrie was 1bhp to every kg of weight. If this target is met, then the BHP will be 1130 (900bhp from the engine and 230 from the hybrid powertrain).

Aston Martin Valkyrie Specifications

Fortunately, there will be a road and a track version of the Valkyrie. Taking a leaf out of the Red Bull F1 car's their aerodynamic and suspension set-up will yield an extremely aggressive yet graceful cornering ability. 

Trivia - The difference between the road and track versions are weight and aerodynamics.

If you're wondering why the Valkyrie has an unusual shape, then it's imperative to take into account the importance of aerodynamics. F1 cars are renowned for their levels of downforce which theoretically mean they could drive upside down.

Transferring this knowledge to the Valkyrie greatly influenced its shape, it's packaged in a carbon fibre tube. The benefit of this is a greater versatility in regard to aero elements like inlets and tunnels to generate massive levels of downforce.

The downside of a carbon fibre tube is limited space. By installing the seats, they saved a lot of space and went further by putting the controls on an F1-styled steering wheel. 

Combined with active aero, this car will take precision aerodynamics to new levels. How it achieves this is creating an active aero system that reacts to lateral g's and adjusting the car to stay level. 

Final Words

What do we have here? The car is extraordinary. 

Aston Martin is looking to create a landmark. However, in order to do that you need to ask yourself the right questions. They made the prudent choice to disregard the market and create their own interpretation. This car will be one-of-a-kind.

By not looking at the AMG team, McLaren's new Speedtail or any other competitor, Aston Martin are seeking to take performance to new levels of performance. Will this assault on the Holy Trinity ensure their demise? 

We don't even have all the details yet but this will give the Holy Trinity and the Mercedes AMG ONE a run for its money. With both the AMG ONE and the Valkyrie harnessing F1 technology, the battle for the hypercar market is certainly reaching new extremes. 

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Aston Martin Valkyrie - The Car From the Gods?
Aston Martin Valkyrie - The Car From the Gods?
Aston Martin Valkyrie - The Car From the Gods?
Aston Martin Valkyrie - The Car From the Gods?
Aston Martin Valkyrie - The Car From the Gods?
Aston Martin Valkyrie - The Car From the Gods?
Aston Martin Valkyrie - The Car From the Gods?