- A genuine “factory Vantage,” original left-hand drive with ultimate specs and ultimate power
- One of three full-specification North American-delivery V8 Vantages
- Single-family ownership from new until 2015
- Matching-numbers original four cam, quad-Weber carbureted alloy engine
- Fresh, comprehensive concours-quality restoration by marque specialists
- A truly hand built muscle car produced with bespoke British craftsmanship
425 bhp, 5,340 cc DOHC alloy four-cam V-8 engine with four Weber downdraft carburetors, ZF five-speed manual transmission, independent front suspension with upper and lower control arms, de Dion rear axle with Watt linkage, trailing arms, and coil springs, and four-wheel hydraulic disc brakes. Wheelbase: 102.8 in.
The true Vantage “supercar” version of Aston Martin’s standard-bearer V8 was never sold new in the United States due to emissions regulations; the fire-breathing “4 × 2” Weber carburetors and low-restriction exhaust were simply not made to be compliant. Thus, V8 Vantage models sold in the United States were actually “sheep in wolves’ clothing,” with the same aggressive, aerodynamic body upgrades as “true” Vantages, including an assertive blanked-off grille and hood scoop, but equipped with the standard (and anemic by comparison) fuel-injected engine and ungainly 5-mph bumpers.
The proper, full-specification V8 Vantage was noted in the April 1978 issue of Motor Sport Magazine as being the fastest accelerating production automobile in the world, capable of rocketing from 0–60 mph in 5.4 seconds. Motor Magazine, not to be outdone, took a Series II out on 25 April 1981 and bested that time with the run in only 5.2 seconds. These figures are still impressive today, especially considering the weight of its stature as a luxurious GT, though clothed in aluminum alloy coachwork. Beginning in October 1978, these cars gained improvements to their body styling, including the trademark Vantage aerodynamic package, a leather headliner, and a burled walnut dashboard as part of the so-called Series II or “Oscar India” generation (“OI” was internal code for the new model referring to “October Introduction”).
Of the 172 genuine 425-horsepower V8 Vantage models produced between 1978 and 1985, it is believed that only three were delivered in North America, each left-hand drive from new. The car offered here is one of them. Built for Mr. J. Pierce, founder of Ranger Oil of Calgary, Alberta (Canada’s largest independent oil firm at the time). This Aston Martin was Mr. Pierce’s personal automobile until his passing in 1991, and subsequently relocated to the Los Angeles area, remaining in the care of family members until 2015.
The car was found to have been maintained in excellent mechanical condition; indeed, to this day, its alloy four-cam engine has never required rebuilding, and its compression levels remain within factory specifications. This is backed up by full service records that accompany the car, dating from 1996 to the present day, as well as by the Statement of Confirmation from the Gaydon, Warwickshire, factory, which attests to the car’s identity and origin.
Nonetheless, the current owner sought perfection, and thus a comprehensive restoration program was undertaken and has recently been completed by marque specialists Autosport Designs of Huntington Station, New York. Performed by marque experts with true concours-quality attention to the car’s legendary build quality, the work utilized proper original methods and materials, including Tobacco Connolly-style leather and contrasting grey Wilton carpets, complementing the handsome period-correct finish of Cumberland Grey. Further detailed attention was also paid to the luggage area, engine bay, and chassis to bring them up to show standards. Today the car is presented with an extensive, fresh service to ensure a superb driving experience to match its striking appearance. Extras include owner’s handbook, tools, and factory jack.
The true V8 Vantage promises and delivers startling performance – it is a hand-built British muscle car with quality and details borrowed from Saville Row. With ultimate rarity on these shores, it represents a unique supercar for the consummate Aston Martin enthusiast. This freshly prepared example, one of three left-hand drive North American supplied, full-specification V8 Vantages, boasting single-family ownership until very recently, is easily among the most outstanding on the market.