Despite being the "entry level" model in Aston Martin's range, there's nothing economy-class about the 2013 Vantage.
Available with a choice of two engines, the the Vantage ranges from sporty to borderline ferocious. The V8 Vantage gets a 4.7-liter V-8 engine rated at 430 horsepower, and is capable of 0-60 mph runs in 4.7 seconds. The V12 Vantage's V-12 engine is a 6.0-liter, 510-horsepower affair, good for 0-60 mph runs in just 4.2 seconds. Either choice is fun-to-drive, but the extra kick of the V-12 model--not to mention its sound--is well worth the extra cash.
V8 Vantage models are available in both coupe and roadster form, but the V12 Vantage Roadster is not available in the U.S.
Inside, all Vantages are swathed in leather (or nearly any other material of your choosing, for a fee), and all are comfortable for what they are--namely, two-seat sports cars. The V12 Vantage is a touch more sporty-feeling, with optional carbon fiber and Kevlar composite seating (to save weight), but all models offer Alcantara, leather, and metallic trim accents, plus Aston's unique crystal key fob that slots into the dash to act as a push-button start mechanism.
Updates for 2013 include automatic headlights, rain-sensing wipers, and a backup camera, all standard across the range. New optional features include the Luxe Pack, which adds a premium audio system, heated/memory setas, a bright-finish grille, and more. A new Exterior Carbon Pack does what it says: adds carbon fiber accents to the Vantage's exterior. All models get a range of new color and trim choices.
Ride quality in the Vantage matches handling, delivering a firm-but-not-excessive balance between comfort and performance. The slightly lighter (by 110 pounds) V8 Vantage manages to feel a touch more nimble, but the V12 Vantage's extra oomph more than makes up for the weight differential with on-demand acceleration.
For more details on the 2013 Aston Martin Vantage range, visit our review at The Car Connection