The current generation Aston Martin Vantage certainly has the goods to be a good sports coupe. With curvaceous styling, newly improved technology, and a spirited twin-turbocharged V8 under the hood the Vantage can finally be considered a legit competitor in the sports car ranks. However, the one thing that has always missing from this iteration of Vantage is the ability to drop the roof. Aston Martin was keen to rectify that problem, and has formally unveiled the all new 2021 Vantage roadster.
Dropping the Volante moniker for the first time ever, the roadster adopts many of the same styling cues that define its fixed roof counterpart including the clean front fascia, as well as the DB10 inspired rear fascia. However, Aston engineers made some minor changes, with the roadster utilizing an all new “Z-Fold” roof mechanism that is lightweight, and also allows the roof to be raised or lowered in just under 7 seconds. This allows it to have the fastest roof operation of any convertible on the market today, and the folding roof only adds a mere 132 pounds to the car which is not a bad trade off for fun in the sun capability. The interior carries over largely unchanged from the coupe, which is good for buyers that are fans of the sheer amounts of design and technology that it brings to the table.
Performance hardware is also lifted over from the coupe, with the 4.0 liter twin-turbocharged V8 still lurking under the hood. It brings 503 horsepower to the party with 505 lb-ft of torque to help balance things out further. All of this muscle is transmitted to the rear wheels through an eight speed automatic which allows the roadster to make the sprint to 60 mph in just 3.7 seconds. This is a hair slower than the 3.5 time achieved by the coupe, but we highly doubt many buyers will use this rather miniscule difference to formally judge the roadster’s merits as a sports car.
Instead, it will be handling, and here, the Vantage roadster does not disappoint. Aston engineers have give the car additional bracing, and it even borrows the same adaptive suspension, torque vectoring, and electronic rear differential as the coupe. As a bonus, it still offers three different driving modes (Sport, Sport + and Track) to help make the droptop a versatile player in all kinds of sporty driving.
“Convertible sports cars are often seen as compromised when compared to their Coupe equivalents,” Matt Becker, Aston Martin Chief Engineer claims. “But the Vantage Roadster remains absolutely dedicated true to its mission of delivering precise, agile and expressive handling dynamics combined with stonking straight-line performance. And of course, there’s the added dimension of driving a great-sounding sports car with the roof down.”
Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer doubled down on that in a separate statement revealing “Open-top Aston Martins are always firm favorites with our customers, so it’s very exciting to introduce the Vantage Roadster. For many, driving with the roof down is the true definition of the sports car experience as it truly brings your senses to life. Vantage has always delivered the purest of thrills, but in Roadster form that adrenaline rush is set to go to the next level.”
In the meantime, both the roadster and the coupe also enter the new model year with a host of updates designed at enhancing the Vantage even further while also celebrating the 70th anniversary of the Vantage nameplate’s debut at the same time. The iconic “vane grille” returns as an optional alternative to the normal grille, and several new wheel and color choices also make their way to the Vantage to spice up the levels of customization and vibrant elements that define the Vantage ownership experience. The once AMR exclusive seven speed manual now bleeds over to the standard models for those that prefer to do the shifting themselves (this author being one of them from past Vantage experience.) Lastly, while we are still keeping our eyes peeled for a possible V12 model, Aston has still remained silent on whether it will eventually offer one or not (despite our best efforts.)
Pricing for the 2021 Vantage family starts at $146,000 for the coupe, while the roadster commands a small premium, with the base sticker starting at a higher $161,000. Both versions are currently available to pre-order, but the roadster will begin arriving in Aston Martin showrooms later this summer.
Carl Malek has been an automotive journalist for over 10 years. First starting out as a freelance photographer before making the transition to writing during college, his work has appeared on numerous automotive forums as well as websites such as Autoshopper.com.
Carl is also a big fan of British vehicles with the bulk of his devotion going to the Morgan Motor Company as well as offerings from Lotus, MG, and Caterham. When he is not writing about automobiles, Carl enjoys spending time with his family and friends in the Metro Detroit area, as well as spending time with his adorable pets.