We’re not sure whether anyone will want to try opening up the top on the new Aston Martin DBS Superleggera Volante, at least if they’re pushing it anywhere near the drop-top’s 211 mph top speed.
That’s the same top speed, incidentally, as the coupe version of the Superleggera, something that required some creative aerodynamic engineering to accomplish.
Beyond the switch to a soft-top, the Volante manages to retain the same, basic shape as the original coupe which TheDetroitBureau.com first reviewed last August, a look that Aston’s Chief Creative Officer Marek Reichman described as “a brute in a suit.”
(Click Here for a first drive review of the Aston Martin DBS Superleggera coupe.)
Its sleek, teardrop skin remains stretched almost too tightly on its frame. “It’s about emphasizing the power,” Reichman suggested, adding that, “We’re showing off.”
While sharing the same, basic platform as the familiar Aston Martin DB11, both versions of the DBS boast a longer wheelbase, though they actually are a slight bit shorter, nose-to-tail because of shortened overhangs. The black mesh grille is unique to the DBS and, among Aston loyalists, a bit controversial. The car does need the opportunity to breathe more deeply, however, and Aston has revised the louvers in the carbon-fiber hood, as well, to further assist. Wrap-around LED driving lamps give the Superleggera a cat’s eye look.
Other notable features on the DBS coupe and Volante include their paired front splitter and airdam, designed to accelerate airflow under the vehicle to not only improve cooling but boost high-speed downforce. “Curlicues” behind the front wheels help air escape from the wheel wells. And the convertible gets a revised version of the DBS Aeroblade II to deliver even more downforce to the rear.
At its maximum speed, the Volante generates a full 177 kilograms, or 389 pounds, of downforce. That’s a mere 3 kg less than with the coupe, no mean feat.
(Aston’s AM-RB 003 is a high-tech hybrid hypercar. Click Here to check it out.)
Under the bonnet, as the British like to call it, both versions of the DBS Superleggera are powered by a twin-turbo 5.2-liter V-12 making 715 horsepower and 663 pound-feet of torque. Not only does the Volante match the coupe’s top speed but it comes in just a tenth of a second slower to 60, at 3.5 seconds. The 12-banger is mated to a ZF eight-speed gearbox sending power to the back wheels.
As with the metal-top version, the Superleggera Volante is a classic grand tourer, and it offers plenty of luxurious elements. To hold down weight, there are a number of carbon fiber elements both outside and in, and you can opt for even more for the rear tonneau cover and windshield surround.
As for the fold-up cloth top, it opens in 14 seconds and takes just two seconds longer to close. You can also operate the top using the keyfob as long as you’re within about seven feet of the Volante.
Aston plans to have the DBS Superleggera Volante available in U.S. showrooms by late this year. Expect it to start at $329,100, though most buyers will likely pay a fair bit more for, as the British marque notes in a press release, the new ragtop continues “Aston Martin’s persistence for offering extensive levels of customization.”
(Aston Martin’s all-electric Longonda all-terrain concept hints at the sub-brand’s future.)