First shown as a concept in 2006, Aston Martin's four-door sports car, the Rapide, is now displayed at the Frankfurt Motor Show in production form. The Rapide is said to cost £150,000 and will be received by its first customers by May 2010. The car is fitted with a hand-built 6-liter V12. Its 470 bhp peak power is delivered at 6000 rpm and 443 lb ft peak torque at 5000 rpm.
Aston Martin continues to add improvements to the car, the latest was a 40mm extra headroom. Chief executive, Dr Ulrich Bez, described the Rapid as the culmination of the Aston Martin range of sports cars, a car that seals the revival of a truly admired marque. He boasts that there is now an Aston Martin for every taste and for every use.
He says with the arrival of the Rapide, the family is now able to enjoy their Aston Martin together. He talked about the visibility, and new levels of comfort, refinement and entertainment. The Rapide has a 301-liter luggage compartment which allows all four passengers to carry soft bags and even sets of skis. The car will be available worldwide in all of Aston Martin's 125 dealerships.
Unveiled as a concept in the 2006 Detroit Auto Show, the Rapide project was approved by Aston Martin's new owners in mid-2007, just after the marque was sold by Ford. Over a period of around two years, the carmaker's design and engineering team was able to come up with a new car from scratch.
Aston Martin underpinned the Rapide with the 'V/H Architecture' platform that already underpins its other vehicles like the Aston Martin DBS, DB9 and Vantage. Aston Martin chief executive Ulrich Bez described the new Rapide as the culmination of the marque's range of sports cars -- a car that caps Aston Martin's revival.
He noted that with the Rapide, Aston Martin now offers vehicles for every taste and for every use. He remarked that the Rapide allows a family to enjoy their Aston Martin vehicle in a refreshing yet comfortable environment. He noted that the Rapide offers a low-sitting interior with sufficient visibility from every seat and with new levels of comfort, entertainment and refinement.
On other hand, Marek Reichman, Aston Martin's Director of Design, likened the Rapide to a race horse standing still – power and elegance conveyed by its rear haunches and stance.
Reichman, head of in-house design team that designed the Rapide, added that the car features real sense of proportion. He noted that its new double grill provides more road presence while its lengthened iconic signature side strake enhances its lateral proportions in a subtle, yet elegant manner.