Posted on: Jul 17, 2012
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Smaller Engines for Future Astons?


Constricting emissions regulations force AML to consider three-, four- or six-cylinder engines for future models.
The bulk of the cars that Aston Martin makes are built around the same engine that debuted in the DB7 Vantage way back in 1999. It's a 6.0-liter V12 that was built by Cosworth out of two Ford V6 engine blocks. Today it can be found in the V12 Vantage, the Virage, the DB9, the DBS, the Rapide and the new Vanquish - not to mention most of its racing cars. (In fact only the V8 Vantage and the Toyota-built Cygnet city car use other engines.) But that could change in the future, according to the latest reports coming out of England.

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So what would Aston develop to replace to complement its ubiquitous twelve? Anything from an inline three to a V6. Because Aston Martin, you see, is not aligned with any of the major automakers (like it was under previous Ford ownership, or as Ferrari is today with Fiat and Lamborghini is with Volkswagen), it's under tremendous pressure to cut emissions from its existing sportscars. That was a big part of the business case for the Cygnet, with its frugal 1.3-liter inline-four, and while the company has cut the emissions from its V8 and V12 models by 25% over the past six years, it could be forced to do more.
That doesn't mean, cautions CEO Ulrich Bez, that Aston would give up on its exclusivity. But seeing a new GT rolling out of the factory in Gaydon with a three-, four- or even six-cylinder engine could prove a pill even more bitter to swallow than the Cygnet that had the purists up in arms.

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