There are two things that make my world go ‘round: beautiful, intelligent women and proper sports cars. I use the term ‘proper’ very loosely. Mostly because I wouldn’t kick a 2.7-liter rear-engine Porsche 911 Carerra RS out of bed, nor would a mid-engined Lancia Delta S4 be my last choice in a fabled game of sports car dodgeball. To put it lightly, I don’t discriminate wildly when it comes to pleasurable experiences.

But let’s get to powerplants. I like my cylinders like I like my donuts—in packs of twelve. The greatest modern V12s have notoriously come out of Europe. Whether they be from Maranello, Sant’Agata, Munich, or Gaydon; it doesn’t matter much. They’re all glorious to hear whap, whap, whapping on a crisp autumn morning, but even more so, piloting a vehicle equipped with the svelte powerplant has proven, on more than one occasion, to be an ample replacement to a peaty 15-year scotch, a Montecristo Churchill cigar, and a warm fire.

Our fearless leader knows this feeling as he recently spent some quality time with the newly-released Rapide—Aston Martin’s V-12-powered super saloon. In his exceptional first-drive review, Marty spoke in depth about the DB9 limousine’s dynamics, something I won’t cover here, but it’s obvious this family-hauler can hang with the best of them. What I have covered is the Rapide’s design. Many of you may think—and at first glance you’d almost be correct—that this is merely a DB9 with a pair of doors tacked on. But in fact, the engineers and designers in Gaydon worked tirelessly to take the design initiated by Ian Callum and finished by Henrik Fisker to all-new proportions, stretching it over a 2,989mm wheelbase.

Those of you with the liquidity to purchase superfluous 470-horsepower hyper saloons should get down on your hands and knees to thank these English chaps for giving you a beautiful alternative to the ungainly Porsche Panamera. Those of you still taking your change to the Coinstar machine, take a gander at our gallery in which I’ve laid out the significant details and subtle styling cues that set the Rapide apart from its younger two-door siblings.