The V8 Vantage was Aston Martin’s answer to Porsche’s 911, and as today’s Nice Price or No Dice roadster demonstrates, it can now be had for less than its contemporary German competitor. Let’s see if that makes it a British bargain.
When getting a job at any major clothing retailer, the first thing you’re taught is how to properly fold and stack the soft goods. Presentation is the name of the game in retail as nobody wants to paw through a pile of wrinkly clothes like the shopping experience has time-warped them back to their middle-school bedroom.
Based on the comments, many of you had similar feelings about the dented 2012 BMW X5 xDrive 35d we looked at yesterday. The seller claims that the truck’s damage was caused by another truck rolling into it at less than sauntering speed. That may have been the case, but the dent looked bad enough that, had it actually broken the metal you might have expected to find Kate Winslet floating on a deck chair next to it with Leonardo DiCaprio’s icy lifeless body bobbing beneath. At a $13,500 asking, that vision was too much to bear, and the big Bimmer went down in a not-quite titanic, but still substantial 75 percent No Dice loss.
As many of us know, when taking Ian Fleming’s James Bond from the page to the silver screen, one of the changes the filmmakers decided upon was the switch in 007's preferred mode of personal transportation from a Blower Bentley to an Aston Martin. This helped modernize the character as the jet-setting secret agent playboy that we now know and love.
Here we are more than half a century after that iconic decision and both Bond and Aston Martin are still around. Not only that but either remains instantly recognizable despite accommodations for certain present-day sensibilities.
This 2009 Aston Martin V8 Vantage represents one of those accommodations, having been conceptualized as a new “Baby Aston” as the Top Gear team once anointed the model. In that role, it was intended to take on the likes of the mighty Porsche 911 in both stature and sales. While the VH platform Vantage didn’t quite live up to that expectation, it did create, over the course of its 11-year model run (2006 — 2017), a stable and somewhat profitable down-market expansion of the Aston Martin product line. Overall, more than 21,000 were sold over that time, making the V8 Vantage the highest-production model Aston Martin has ever produced.
Of that number, only 6,231 were V8 roadsters (another 501 were V12 dropheads) and as a 2009 model, this one has the 4.7 liter naturally aspirated AJ37 V8 rather than the earlier 4.3 tucked under its long, lovely bonnet.
That engine had its origins at Jaguar, but here in the Aston, it’s mostly model-unique featuring a dry sump for a lower mounting position, and pretty much everything else, save for the bore spacing, having been massaged by AM for the company’s needs. That gives the car fully 420 horsepower and 347 lb-ft of twist. While manual gearboxes were available in the Vantage, in this car, that power gets sent down a long torque tube to a rear-mounted seven-speed auto-shifting manual gearbox. From there it goes onward to the wide expanses of the rear tires.
Along with that choose-your-adventure transmission, this Vantage comes with a clean title and a claimed 40,000 miles on the odometer. The ruby-red paint looks stunning in the ad’s pics and pairs nicely with the color-coordinated convertible top. The V8 Vantage’s styling is timeless and elegant and it holds its own against the (albeit refrigerator white) Ferrari 488 which is parked next to it in the pics.
The interior is two-tone red and gold, although the latter comes across as a more lurid yellow in the pictures. Nothing seems to be amiss in there either. According to the seller, the car is in “like new” condition, carrying current registration and a clean bill of health from California’s Dr. SMOG. The ad touts the color combo as being very rare and says the car runs “perfect super strong.” What do you think such perfection should cost?
The asking price is $42,000 and while Aston Martin did build a relative shit-ton of VH-platform cars, you don’t see roadsters on the market all that often outside of the hoity-toity venues that won’t let the likes of me past their red-velvet ropes. This one’s on Craigslist, which is where real people shop and trade things like guitars for goats and what-not. That kind of makes this the People’s Aston.
Okay, people, now’s the time for all of you to vote this V8 Vantage’s fate. What do you say, is this roadster worth that $42,000 asking as presented in the ad? Or, does that price have you introducing yourself as “bored, genuinely bored?”
San Francisco Bay Area, California, Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.
H/T to RevUnlimiter for the hookup!
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