The Aston Martin Valkyrie is a technical tour-de-force — and nowhere is that attention to high-performance detail more in evidence than in the engine bay. Here, the most powerful naturally aspirated road engine ever made nestles among finely machined and entirely bespoke components. Aston Martin Advanced Operations and Red Bull Racing’s Chief Technical Officer Adrian Newey have been working closely with Cosworth in the creation of this engine. For 60 years, the Northampton-based firm has provided excellent engineering to the racing community and it now joins an impressive roster of collaborators on the Valkyrie, including Red Bull Advanced Technologies, Ricardo, Mutimatic, Rimac, Michelin and Bosch.
The challenges are immense. The car is powered by an all-new 6.5-litre V12 with a projected output of 1,000bhp at 11,000rpm, capable of delivering over 700Nm of torque. Each unit will be hand-built, tested and fully run-in by a team of ex-Formula 1 engine builders prior to installation in the Valkyrie’s chassis. The engine has titanium forged connecting rods and inlet valves, with 24 injectors and 24 spark plugs and coils; at full power, it consumes 625 litres of air every second. Every facet has been considered, from the billet machined crankshaft (50% lighter than that of Aston Martin’s earlier hypercar, the One-77) to the dozen gear-driven scavenge pumps that maintain lubrication even when subjected to extreme cornering forces.
Only a V12 could achieve these statistics, while providing the simplicity needed to integrate with the Valkyrie’s carbon chassis. The decision to take the naturally aspirated route was also driven by the desire for instant throttle response and unforgettable soundtrack. The end results brook no compromise, with the compact scale maintaining the hypercar’s extreme aerodynamics and the lightness required to achieve performance targets.
The Valkyrie V12 is now in prototype form. Full power runs — taking it all the way up to 11,000rpm — will provide a tantalising first insight into the pure drama of this peerless new machine.