2012 Aston Martin Rapide Luxury Sport Car

An international tourer of immense ability, the Aston Martin Rapide can be enjoyed on any occasion, any time, anywhere. At the heart of this sports car lies Aston Martin’s race-proven 6.0-litre V12 engine, which is mated to a smoothly responsive, paddle-shift ‘Touchtronic 2’ automatic transmission. Tuned to deliver impressive power and immense torque, with 477 PS (470 bhp) and 600 Nm (443 lb ft) at its peak, the Rapide’s hand-built engine provides effortless performance and magnificent refinement in equal measure. Characterised by their beauty and timeless elegance, Aston Martins are renowned for being the most beautiful cars in the world. True to form, the Aston Martin Rapide is a breathtakingly beautiful four-door sports car. Designed to maintain purity of proportion and vision, and demonstrating supreme elegance and balance, the Aston Martin Rapide looks stunning from every angle.

A superlative sporting coupe incorporating heritage, elegance and innovation, the Rapide is an expression of the pure emotion and passion that underpins the Aston Martin marque. Hand-built to the highest standards, the revolutionary Aston Martin Rapide redefines the sporting grand tourer. The flowing elegance of the Aston Martin Rapide’s exterior is carried through to the interior of the car, where high levels of comfort, equipment and quality are matched to a sporting character that focuses both driver and passengers on the road ahead. The forms and materials used in the front cabin environment have been carried through to the rear seats and then onwards to the luggage area at the rear of the car, creating a holistic, one-piece ‘cabin’ that incorporates the entire volume of the car.

An Aston Martin is engineered to sharpen the senses, extracting every grain of texture from the
road surface, while providing unrivalled driver feedback and involvement. Yet when conditions preclude spirited driving, an Aston Martin adopts a relaxing, restrained character, its massive
reserves of power and torque combining with the uniquely cosseting interior to envelop both driver and passengers in the Aston Martin experience. From every angle, the Aston Martin Rapide presents a harmonious composition with an intrinsic implication of ability. Aston Martin’s design team works with raw clay models as well as advanced computer modelling, and it is through the feel of real material and physical surfaces that the company’s unique sculptural design language is honed and developed.

Aston Martin set out to create the world’s most beautiful four-door sports car. The result was the Aston Martin Rapide Concept, revealed to the world at the Detroit Auto Show. That vision has been translated faithfully into the production Rapide. Created by a team headed by Aston Martin Design Director Marek Reichman, the Rapide has been designed to look breathtakingly beautiful from every angle, displaying a purity of proportion and balance that is characteristic of the marque. It is a pure piece of Aston Martin design. Beneath the Rapide’s beautifully sculpted bodywork there is function and practicality. The generous luggage space is accessed via a large tailgate, which shuts to blend seamlessly into the Rapide’s voluptuous flanks. Inside, the handtrimmed individual rear seats can each be folded flat at the touch of a button to nearly triple the available load space. The rear doors neatly bridge the transition from flank to shoulder, their edges forming an elegant upward sweep that reaches almost to the Rapide’s roofline. All four doors use Aston Martin’s trademark ‘swan wing’ mechanism, rising up and out at 12 degrees. The opening angle, meanwhile, has been increased to 70 degrees, facilitating easy access to the exquisite rear seats.

The Rapide’s ability is conveyed through the car’s stance and profile, demonstrated by its length, four doors and slightly raised roofline, all of which allow the line of the low bonnet to flow gracefully along the length of the bodywork, over the front wheel-arches and along the shoulder, before intersecting with the downward curve of the rear window as it terminates with the raised lip on the boot lid. This flowing line gives the Aston Martin Rapide a sense of grace and poise, even when static. The forms are harmonious, not tense or uncomfortable, reflecting the refinement, ease and embrace of the car’s interior environment. The Aston Martin Rapide is a true illustration of Aston Martin’s craft skills, and nowhere more so than in its highly-tailored, individual cockpit: driver and passengers are enveloped in a cosseting environment that is alive with detail and resplendent in hand-finished leather, precision stitching and natural materials. The requirements of these high quality, hand-finished materials dovetail precisely with the low-volume, high-technology production that Aston Martin has made its own.

The Aston Martin Rapide bears a strong family resemblance to its two-door siblings, all of them
sharing a taut muscularity and a finessed surface language. Despite its larger size, the Rapide’s length and height have been carefully increased to ensure the fundamental proportions are unaltered, and the silhouette remains instantly recognisable as an Aston Martin. As befits its sports touring capabilities, the Rapide can be seen as a lithe, long-distance runner or a powerful, thoroughbred race horse, its sleek silhouette implying endurance, stamina and speed. At the heart of the Rapide is Aston Martin’s iconic, race-proven V12 engine: highly efficient and flexible, it provides performance and refinement in equal measure. With ‘Touchtronic 2’ transmission, adaptive damping and lightweight dual-cast brakes using cutting-edge technology, the Rapide’s handling is taut, predictable and pliant, giving this spacious car the feel of a smaller sports coupe. As a result, the Rapide is an Aston Martin that can be enjoyed on any occasion, any time, anywhere.

The Aston Martin Rapide is powered by Aston Martin’s iconic, 6.0-litre V12 engine. The all-alloy, quad overhead camshaft, 48-valve engine has a displacement of 5935 cc. Each unit is hand-assembled at Aston Martin’s dedicated engine plant in Cologne, Germany. Tuned and engineered to deliver high levels of performance and refinement, the engine produces 350 kW (477 PS/470 bhp) with broad torque delivery (600 Nm/443 lb ft at 5000 rpm) that allows for both effortlessly smooth progress and instant acceleration. Power is delivered to the rear wheels through a rear mid-mounted ‘Touchtronic 2’ automatic gearbox. This six-speed unit is precisely calibrated with the engine to provide broad flexibility in ‘Drive’ mode, as well as having a highly responsive character in ‘Sport’ Touchtronic mode, when shifts can be activated using the cast aluminium, leathercovered paddles sited behind the steering wheel. ‘Sport’ Touchtronic mode sharpens and shortens gearshifts for a more dynamic driving experience.


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