The Aston Martin Vantage 007 Edition is probably an excellent getaway car. Inspired by the Aston Martin V8 driven by Timothy Dalton’s James Bond in The Living Daylights (1987), this modern Vantage might not include a set of integrated skis, but it still cuts a dramatic dash across an icy surface. It’s debatable as to how helpful the outrigger skis would have been to the original V8’s on-ice performance, although its spiked tyres (automatically deployed, naturally) certainly helped.
Regardless of the physics, Bond, together with Maryam d’Abo’s Kara Milovy, managed a clean escape across a frozen lake in The Living Daylights, largely thanks to Q Branch’s perceptive set of optional extras.
Following the car’s final plunge into a snowdrift, Bond sets the V8 to self-destruct. Presumably, the wreckage was subsequently salvaged from its resting place on the Austrian border to enable the car’s return for its No Time to Die cameo, where it can be seen crossing Norway’s magnificent Atlantic Road bridge.
The Vantage 007 Edition combines bespoke details inspired by The Living Daylights with the power and beauty of Aston Martin’s most dynamic model. Externally, there’s a bespoke mesh grille with a chrome bezel that references the brutish charm of the original. The dashed yellow diffuser and sill that define the lower edge of the Vantage’s curvaceous bodywork give a subtle nod to those outrigger skis. However, the Vantage 007 Edition keeps its (optional) skis in a rather more practical place: they are on a bespoke rear-mounted rack.
You won’t find quite as many Q gadgets in the Vantage 007 Edition’s contemporary cabin, although The Living Daylights is subtly referenced throughout. Details include a laser-etched gadget plaque, cross hairs etched on to the paddle shift gear levers and the cello “f holes” on the carbon-fibre seat backs.
Behind the wheel, the 007 Edition is pure contemporary Vantage. There’s a world of difference between the normally aspirated V8 engine found in the original 80s-era car and today’s twin-turbocharged 4.0 litre V8. The 007 Edition puts out an impressive 503 bhp and also comes in at least 300kg lighter.
Even so, ice driving offers a salutary experience to the unwary. Regardless of your mastery of car control, the sudden loss of traction will inevitably catch you out. The Vantage sends those 503 horses to the rear wheels, and in the absence of spiked tyres or snow chains, forward momentum is curtailed until you learn to balance the power delivery. At which point, the experience is transformed into one of pure joy.
Out on the lake, the Aston Martin Vantage 007 Edition is a symbol of progress and innovation. Just 100 examples are being built and hopefully none of them will ever find themselves in this kind of tricky situation. But if you ever get the chance to put the Vantage 007 Edition through its paces, you’ll find it makes light work of any escape.
This story is an extract from an article featured in the AM49 issue of Aston Martin magazine, out now. If you're not already a subscriber, visit magazine.astonmartin.com/magazine-subscription so that you can read the full story.