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Old 21 Dec 2007, 14:38 (Ref:2093382)   #1
The359
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The359 should be qualifying in the top 10 on the grid
What is Aston Martin up to?

A lot of things seem to be falling together recently in regards to Aston Martin and what exactly they're going to be doing in 2008, at least for the factory Prodrive team. We already know the GT2 is in the works, however I don't really see that being a factory run car, and simply something shuffled off to whoever is willing to buy one, just like an F430 or 997 RSR.

At the same time, Larbre Competition has already given up their Aston Martin semi-works team to go to Saleen, and Scuderia Italia has done the same, moving to Ferrari. This leaves Prodrive as the only factory team, and they haven't announced anything.

And now we have the new LMP1 regulations with emphasis on 6000cc GT1-based engines, something which the Aston Martin V12 conveniently fits under.

There are already hints on DSC that a manufacturer is posed to enter LMP1 under these regulations, and it just seems to be working together perfectly that Aston Martin will be the one making the move. It may not be a full-on effort to take on Peugeot/Audi, but it could be as I suggested a toe-in-the-water: Running an Aston Martin V12 in the back of a Lola or Zytek or some other chassis in order to perfect the engine before building your own car, like Acura has been doing.

We already know Prodrive let slip that they might want to go for overall wins, so is this it?
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Old 21 Dec 2007, 14:47 (Ref:2093387)   #2
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I don't see such a thing happening in 08', maybe 09'. I doubt they can simply bolt the V12 into a Zytek or Lola... don't think it would fit, or work with those chassis, just not designed for it. I believe it would have to be a chassis designed to house such an engine, and there hasn't been enough lead time for that, since their F1 plans fell apart.
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Old 21 Dec 2007, 14:54 (Ref:2093390)   #3
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The359 should be qualifying in the top 10 on the grid
How much bigger would an Aston V12 be in comparison to a Judd V10?
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Old 21 Dec 2007, 15:00 (Ref:2093393)   #4
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V12 is longer for sure. I don't know whether current customer LMP1 chassis have been designed with that in mind.

Audi had to increase its wheel base to mount the V12 TDI.

Last edited by gwyllion; 21 Dec 2007 at 15:07.
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Old 21 Dec 2007, 15:17 (Ref:2093402)   #5
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Could the B08/60 have been? I know a GT1 manufacturer would have had to have been in contact with a chassis constructor for some time now, as well as the ACO, before all of this was announced.

Either way, I'd think Aston Martin would be doing something more than the GT2 car.
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Old 21 Dec 2007, 15:24 (Ref:2093404)   #6
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With Prodrives technical prowess, I can't see them just slapping a V12 in an existing chassis. I could see them starting with another chassis as a base and making modifications to it, but I really think that this effort would be from the ground up.
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Old 21 Dec 2007, 15:46 (Ref:2093414)   #7
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There was a mention on another thread of a Lola coupe with a V12 engine. Could just be a development mule for testing purposes.
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Old 21 Dec 2007, 16:34 (Ref:2093439)   #8
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Originally Posted by The359
How much bigger would an Aston V12 be in comparison to a Judd V10?
More than just bigger, quite a bit heavier. I don't know the exact weight differences, but I'd have to estimate that we are talking at least 50% heavier. The weight was more my concern than anything else in size.

Now, the AER and Judd engines are fully stressed engines. Homologated engines cannot be fully stressed, and are not designed to be. We are talking about some redesigning here, how much I don't know...
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Old 21 Dec 2007, 19:54 (Ref:2093533)   #9
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JAG should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridJAG should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridJAG should be qualifying in the top 3 on the grid
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Originally Posted by Hammerdown
There was a mention on another thread of a Lola coupe with a V12 engine. Could just be a development mule for testing purposes.
Plus DSC hinting a race car manufacturer is being rewarded for sticking with their current reg coupe, likely Lola.

Prodrive/Richards are now involved with Aston road cars, a P1 program could be justified from a marketing perspective, not just a customer car business.

Back this up with GT2, GT3 and N24 customer programs and support, and you could have a Porsche level operation on your hands.

Don't forget Prodrive run a hugely lucrative Subaru WRC customer car program the world over.
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Old 21 Dec 2007, 19:59 (Ref:2093537)   #10
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Originally Posted by Fogelhund
More than just bigger, quite a bit heavier. I don't know the exact weight differences, but I'd have to estimate that we are talking at least 50% heavier. The weight was more my concern than anything else in size.

Now, the AER and Judd engines are fully stressed engines. Homologated engines cannot be fully stressed, and are not designed to be. We are talking about some redesigning here, how much I don't know...
The issue with the old Jaguar Group C V12 was the high up weight, not the weight or size per se, plus of course lack of power against unrestricted turbo opposition.

This Jaguar V12 was based on a '50's design, the Aston V12 is basically two modern Ford zetecs (I believe) joined together, possibly comparable to a diesel V12, minus the turbo bits and pieces.
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Old 21 Dec 2007, 20:57 (Ref:2093551)   #11
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I have just read the article and can I refer you back to something I posted in the Le Mans Series 2008 thread on Monday which came about from a tip off from someone I know which was - Coupe, Lola, V12 andEndurance racing - it all makes a little more sense now.....
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Old 21 Dec 2007, 21:33 (Ref:2093563)   #12
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Originally Posted by JAG
Plus DSC hinting a race car manufacturer is being rewarded for sticking with their current reg coupe, likely Lola.

Prodrive/Richards are now involved with Aston road cars, a P1 program could be justified from a marketing perspective, not just a customer car business.

Back this up with GT2, GT3 and N24 customer programs and support, and you could have a Porsche level operation on your hands.

Don't forget Prodrive run a hugely lucrative Subaru WRC customer car program the world over.
With Aston Martin independant (+ David Richards & Ulrich Bez are petrolheads) I think an AM prototype is closer than ever before.
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Old 22 Dec 2007, 12:43 (Ref:2093783)   #13
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My guess is that the GT1 manufacturer is corvette not aston, going on the way the alms is and more rumours about a chevvy p1. As for the GT2, it can't be a factory car, that's not allowed, and i can see them winning FIA GT1 with Race Alliance if they could be arsed to give them any support. Problem is, they don't really seem to care about the DBR9 anymore, except for le mans.
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Old 22 Dec 2007, 12:46 (Ref:2093784)   #14
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JAG should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridJAG should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridJAG should be qualifying in the top 3 on the grid
Most expect Corvette will have a P1 soon, but the DSC article hinted at a racecar manufactuer being rewarded for sticking with their current coupe design, add the V12 Lola rumours, and that hints at Aston.

Prodrive have also recently abandoned a customer F1 program with Mclaren chassis, possibly freeing up funds/expertise, that could be applied to an Aston P1 program.

I would expect GM would build their own car in house.

Last edited by JAG; 22 Dec 2007 at 12:50.
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Old 22 Dec 2007, 14:13 (Ref:2093813)   #15
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If Aston Martin do decide to go ahead with a LMP1 programme personally I think they will be in the same boat as any other manufacturer, like Audi they will no doubt buy a chassis from a specalist manufacturer like Lola or Dallara and go from there designing their own areodynamics for the car etc. Aston Martin are a big enough operation to not need to buy customer cars, as are GM. Personally im not so sure GM will come back so soon though, its only been 5 years since the Cadillac programme finished.
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