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Sleek and swift, Aston Martin’s Vantage range can satisfy the most demanding driver – especially the “S” version, an even more responsive and agile vehicle than the standard model. The Vantage S, moreover, is available in “Blades Edition”, a model named for the famous British aerobatics team with special bespoke styling and interior tailoring as well as an array of factory-fitted optional equipment.
Just five of the Blade Edition have been sold (each one with its own identifier to link it to a specific plane in the aerobatics squad), making it an enormously valuable collectors’ item as well as a marvellous vehicle in its own right.
This limited-edition model emphasises its difference immediately with unique exterior styling. The roof panel, rear lamp infills and rear deck lid are all Jet Black, and offset delightfully by brake callipers and a carbon-fibre front grille painted in bright Gulf Orange. One particularly imaginative touch is a car cover with a monochrome union flag design and the Blades logo – manufactured from parachute silk! The stunning looks are rounded off by 10-spoke lightweight alloy wheels with carbon fibre centre caps, painted in Satin Black.
Inside, the heated and electrically-adjustable leather seats are enlivened by a Jaffa Orange stripe in the centre and a “Blades” logo embroidered on the headrests. Naturally, the abundance of standard features present on more conventional editions of the Vantage S are all present, such as climate-controlled air conditioning and electrically-adjustable, heated door mirrors.
Fitted with Aston Martin’s 4.7 litre V8 engine, the Blade Edition is a fine counterpart to the acrobatic Extra 300LP planes used by the aerobatics team. Supplying 430bhp and maximum torque of 490Nm, this engine takes the car from a standing start to 60mph in just 4.8 seconds, and to a top speed of 190mph. Performance is enhanced further by carbon fibre front and rear diffusers and a sports exhaust. A firm but pliant sports suspension and ultra-precise handling, meanwhile, guarantee extraordinary cornering capability.
The well-equipped cabin comes with all the driver-convenience amenities that one would expect. Standard features include satellite navigation, Bluetooth and iPod connectivity, a 600W premium audio system, and cruise control.
In addition to a variety of highly effective yet unobtrusive traction control systems, the Vantage S Blade Edition boasts a full set of airbags. Typically, even the safety equipment has been given its own character; the passenger airbag is embroidered with a unique identity code identical to its “sister” aircraft (G-ZXCL, G-ZEXL etc). Parking sensors at the front and rear are standard to guard against bumps and scrapes, with a reversing camera available as an option.
On the day of collection in April 2016, the new owners of these five unique cars received VIP treatment by Aston Martin Cambridge and The Blades at Sywell Aerodrome. This included a driving experience in their new car with an Aston Martin professional driver, an aerobatic flight experience with The Blades, and a helicopter hovering lesson, before finishing the day with a world-class performance from the world’s only aerobatic airline.
4382 mm / 2172.5 in
2022 mm / 79.6 in
(unladen) 1260 mm / 49.6 in
2601 mm / 102.4 in
Unladen Weight (DIN)
1610 kg / 3549 lb
Engine / Cylinders
490 nm @ 5000 rmp
321 kW @ 7300 rpm
0-60 mph / 4.5 sec