We saw it testing a while ago, but now it's finally here. Meet the new Aston Martin Vantage GTE race car, which makes its debut just hours after we finally got to check out the 2018 Vantage street car. Like its roadgoing counterpart, the Vantage GTE is incredibly gorgeous. Just look at that rear diffuser!
The Vantage GTE was developed alongside the road car, and has already undergone around 8000 miles of testing, including a test at Sebring and a 30-hour run at Jarama in Spain. It needs that development, since Aston Martin plans on running it in the World Endurance Championship's (WEC) 2018/2019 transitional super series. That means we'll see it at Le Mans next year, where it can hopefully repeat its predecessor's class win at the circuit.
Like its road-car counterpart, the Vantage GTE will use a Mercedes-AMG 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 for motivation. Interestingly, AMG has only raced this engine in GT4, with its GT3 race car using the firm's old naturally aspirated 6.3-liter V8. That means Aston had to develop this engine for competition usage itself. The GTE's suspension was developed in partnership with Ohlins, while its brakes come from Alcon. Michelin tires will be used in favor of the old Vantage GTE's Dunlops too.
Aston Martin is sticking with the four drivers it used last season too—Le Mans winners Jony Adam and Darren Turner will be in one car, while the other will be piloted by Danes Nicki Thiim and Marco Sørensen, the 2016 WEC GTE Pro champs. Alex Lynn will also join Aston Martin Racing, and the team promises more driver announcements to follow.
We should see the Vantage GTE make its competition debut at next year's Spa 6 Hours. It's got big shoes to fill.