You say hood and I say bonnet — but if we’re talking about Aston Martin’s new Rapide S, let’s just agree for now that it is a superlative luxury sports car. Assertive and sleek with some serious curves, the Rapide S has been updated with a new facelift — including a striking grille — so as to be the “world’s most beautiful four-seat sports car.”
Improved performance also makes it the British company’s most powerful four-door Aston Martin ever. The Aston Martin team undertook the mission to make the Rapide S more aggressive and thoroughly sporty as it will be replacing the older Rapide.
The new AM11 naturally-aspirated, 5,935 cc, 6.0 litre, v12 engine boasts fully CNC machined combustion chambers and lighter, hollow cam shafts. What a mouthful — but in simpler terms, the improved engine produces 550bhp and has increased peak output by 17%. The Rapide S features race car technology reaching a top speed of 190 mph, with enhancements shaving .4 seconds off the 0-60 mph time to 4.7 seconds.
Sharper agility is achieved via the car's lower center of gravity. Furthermore, a built-in specialized system determines driving conditions through an electronic control unit monitoring sensor readings, and accordingly alters the suspension settings to match performance to conditions. How's that for a customized driving experience?
Not only is the sports car tuned better, but its aesthetic appeal also works to counteract lift at higher speeds, as the updated trunk design has a more pronounced ‘flip.’ The construction of the front-end of the car lines up with European regulations regarding pedestrians. Luckily for slow walkers who are no match for the speed and power of the Rapide S, the grille moves rearwards on impact.
Outside noise is tempered by a new hood lining and a revised windscreen cowl. Or you can always drown out noise with the 1,000-watt Bang & Olufsen Beosound audio system. Some of the many included amenities are heated exterior mirrors, heated front and rear seats, and standard-fit pure-glass transmission selector switches. So passengers riding in the back don't miss out on the sports car experience, Aston Martin outfitted the rear with stylish racing seats.
Optional features for the Rapide S are Duotone perforated red and black leather interior and a twin-screen rear-seat entertainment system with a 6-disc DVD player, remote, and wireless headphones. Clients can order the Rapide S through one of the brand's 146 worldwide dealers starting next month.
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