As a bonafide “automotive journalist”, I often find myself dreaming about luxury cars I would love to have parked up in my garage. From 2011 models only, these currently include the Fezza 458 Italia, Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera and the 2011 Ariel Atom for a nifty track day.

But for an outing with the lads or a nice cruise through the English countryside, there is no vehicle I would like to drive more than the Aston Martin Rapide. So I was naturally excited to see my first Rapide in the flesh on a busy day in Central London.

2011 Aston Martin Rapide

Make no mistake, this thing is a piece of art. With a hand-crafted engine from Gaydon, this AM comes equipped with an all alloy quad overhead cam 48 valve 5935cc V12 engine. That’s certainly a mouthful to say to any car novice but needless to say the setup produces 470 horsepower at a lofty 6000 rpm with a noise that is sure to excite any passer-by. So there is literally no need to get messy, the Rapide has as standard a “Touchtronic 2″ six-speed gearbox with an electronic shift-by-wire control system. Again, that’s too much information, but all you need to know is that flicking the magnesium paddle shifters will help you achieve the ridiculous speeds this 4-door car shouldn’t be capable of.

2011 Aston Martin Rapide Side

According to Chief Executive Ulrich Bez, there now exists an Aston Martin for every different segment of the (extremely wealthy) market and this Rapide fills the gap for the typical 2+2 modern family. Except from what we’ve heard, the rear seats really are reserved for the plus 2′s as headroom and leg space is limited. But no worry, with side angle looks like the image above (which is a little blurry I apologise) you will always be riding in style and ready to turn heads no matter where you are.


What I did find quite amazing was the fact that when I first strolled up to the car from the front, I knew it was a different AM from those seen earlier in my life, but it still seemed to have the normal Martin dimensions. At an extremely quick glance I might have mistaken it for a DBS with the menacing grille and air intakes on top of the hood. Walking round the car you do notice the two extra doors, but you also realise how beautifully they have been added to the overall design – this car truly is something and I can’t wait to see my next one. Maybe I’ll even be able to get inside.