Aston Martin Rapide will be auctioned to help Japan

Article by Christian Andrei, on May 8, 2011

Dr. Ulrich Bez, the chief executive of Aston Martin, is set to put his Rapide on sale at the annual Bonhams auction this year at the Newport Pagnell. Proceeds of the event will be donated to charities, which are providing aid to those who were devastated by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

Bonhams, as a way of supporting the initiative, has waived its commission on this item. Dr Bez stated that the company’s presence in the Japanese market and its closer ties with the Japanese automotive business has created “many friends in the region” and the company wants “to do something to help.”

He also said that like everyone else, Aston Martin has been saddened by what Japan has experienced. According to Dr. Bez, the auction “seems the perfect platform” for the extended Aston Martin family to support the cause; thus, the company has decided to auction Rapide, which Dr. Bez has used while representing the company at various events in Europe and in the UK.

Mr. Bez said that he is hopeful that the vehicle will generate a substantial amount “to help make a difference.” The Aston Martin Rapide, since its launch in production stage at the September 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show, has been acclaimed as the most elegant four-door sports vehicle in the world. This practical but luxurious vehicle, which accommodates four adults, provides an engaging driving experience that all Aston Martin cars offer.

Aston Martin Rapide is certainly one of the much-anticipated cars for 2009. Now, the long wait for the marque's first production four-door sports car is over, as Aston Martin finally took the wraps off the elegantly spacious yet very engaging Rapide at the 63rd Frankfurt Motor Show. As expected, Aston Martin Rapide is a perfect embodiment of the marque’s triple core values -- Power, Beauty and Soul.

Power is more than amply provided for by a very dynamic hand-built 6.0-liter V12 engine that has the capability to provide up to 470 bhp (477 PS / 350 kW) of max output at 6,000 rpm as well as up to 600 Nm (443 lb. ft.) of peak torque at 5,000 rpm. This power and torque effortlessly provided by the Rapide’s superior powerplant are transmitted to the wheels through a specifically tuned six-speed Touchtronic 2 automatic gearbox.

This transmission allows for gear changing either automatically or manually through the magnesium paddles mounted on the steering column. As soon as the driver and passenger enter the new Rapide through its four 'swan wing' doors, they will be conveniently and comfortably accommodated by a spacious cabin with four cosseting sports seats in the front and rear. Ample accommodation is not only given to the occupants but also to their cargo or baggage as well – offering up to 301 liters of luggage room.

The rear seats of the new Aston Martin Rapide could be folded flat at just the press of a button to pave way for a flat loading space, thereby increasing the capacity of the luggage compartment from 301 liters to 750 liters. Moreover, the luggage compartment could now be accessed for the rear passenger cabin by fitting a movable bulkhead.

Aston Martin took great effort in making sure that the posterior part of the cabin provides ample and comfortable space with clear views both to the front and sides. Aston Martin specified the Rapide with two hand-trimmed individual seats as well as a personal face-level heating and air conditioning system.

Press Release

Aston Martin To Auction Rapide For Japan

Gaydon, 9th May 2011. Aston Martin Chief Executive Dr. Ulrich Bez is to auction his company Rapide at this year's annual Bonhams auction at Newport Pagnell, with all proceeds to go to charities providing aid to victims of the recent earthquakes and Tsunami in Japan. In support of the initiative, Bonhams has also committed to waiver its commission on this lot.

Dr Ulrich Bez said: "Nobody could have failed to be moved by the recent events in Japan and we at Aston Martin are no exception. After many years presence in the market and closer ties being forged with the Japanese automotive business in recent projects, we have many friends in the region and we wanted to do something to help.

"The Bonhams Aston Martin Auction seems the perfect platform to encourage the extended Aston Martin family to support this cause, so we have decided to auction my Rapide which I have used in my role as Chief Executive to represent Aston Martin at numerous events in both UK and Europe. I hope this superb car will raise a substantial amount to help make a difference."

Since it's unveiling in production form at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September 2009 the Aston Martin Rapide has been widely acclaimed as the world's most elegant four-door sports car. Functional yet luxurious it provides space for up to four adults but with the engaging driving experience synonymous with all Aston Martins. Quickly established as a firm favourite with customers and critics alike, the Aston Martin Rapide, recently affirmed its position as one of the most beautiful cars on sale today after being voted 2011 World Car Design of the Year at the New York International Auto Show by a jury of 66 international journalists.

Chassis number 'F00039' is a UK specification, right hand drive Aston Martin Rapide built in late 2009 for the exclusive business use of Dr Ulrich Bez, Aston Martin's Chief Executive Officer since 2000. This luxuriously specified car is finished in Concours Blue Paint, with an Obsidian Black leather interior stitched in Falcon Grey, and black carpets. The fascia is trimmed in walnut veneer. The Rapide also has heated and cooled front and rear seats, an integrated garage door opener and the rear seat entertainment system incorporating a twin-screen DVD system and infrared headphones.

The 2011 Bonhams Aston Martin Auction opens from 9am on Saturday 21st May at Aston Martin Works Service in Newport Pagnell, Buckinghamshire.

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