Aston Martin doesn't have a stand at this year's Frankfurt Motor Show, but company CEO Andy Palmer is here taking meetings and checking out the scene. We ran into him and got a quick catch-up on the next Aston Martin Vantage and the astonishing Valkyrie.
We've only seen spy photos of the next-gen Vantage, shown above, but we are fairly confident it'll be a real looker. Palmer confirmed this, calling it "the most beautiful car I've ever been associated with." Considering his 38-year auto industry career, during which he presided over the launch of the Aston Martin DB11 and the Vanquish Zagato, that's a bold statement.
Spy photos show that the next Vantage wears a lot of DB10 influence in its styling, but Palmer says there are elements of the wild, track-only Vulcan in the new Vantage too. Interestingly, he told us the DB10 started life as a concept sketch for the next Vantage, but was built as its own model when Aston was approached to make a new James Bond car for the film Spectre.
Palmer implied that the Vantage will be even prettier than the DB10, so we've got really high hopes. Thankfully, it will be revealed in the very near future.
The subject of the upcoming Valkyrie hypercar came up, as Frankfurt saw the debut of competitor Mercedes-AMG's Project One. Palmer says the two cars will offer similar performance, but the Valkyrie will be very different in character from the Project One. They're not really rivals, in Palmer's view—Aston's hypercar will feature elaborate ground-effect aerodynamics and a screaming V12, where Mercedes is putting its emphasis on its Formula One-derived 1.6-liter turbo V6 hybrid drivetrain.
In any case, Palmer said that the Valkyrie's styling should be finalized this month, and that driving prototypes will soon hit test tracks.