aston rapide race car
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Aston Martin will compete at the Nürburgring 24-hour race on 15-16 May with the marque’s new four-door sports car, the Rapide. This will be Gaydon’s fifth consecutive year racing at the famous Nordschleife circuit after previously campaigning the V8 Vantage and V12 Vantage.

Aston’s decision to use the Rapide is to “underline the sporting credentials” of its four-door car. The Rapide will compete in “near-standard specification” apart from mandatory changes required to compete in the endurance race such as safety mods, interior trim removed to reduce weight, retuned suspension and slick tyres. No star drivers either; the Rapide will be driven by a team of Aston engineers lead by Aston Martin CEO, Dr Ulrich Bez.

He explained: “This race represents the ultimate final engineering durability test for any sports car – it subjects the car to the toughest possible assessment under public scrutiny. The Rapide has the capability to carry four people in comfort but first and foremost it is a sports car and we will subject it to the same tests we would our other sports cars.”

The 470 bhp 5.9-litre V12 Rapide will be joined by a similarly lightly modified V12 Vantage which won the SP8 class last year on its competitive race debut, finishiing 21st place overall. Porsche GT3s have won the event since 2006.