Automatic transmissions and electric vehicles are dominating now but Aston Martin has stood firm in upholding the art of the manual gearbox. Marking their 110th anniversary in a remarkable fashion, the esteemed automaker introduced the Valour—a limited-edition, V12-powered supercar that pays homage to its rich heritage while embracing the manual transmission.
The Valour is more than a farewell to the manual gearbox; it’s a resounding affirmation of Aston Martin’s commitment to preserving a distinctive driving experience. Marek Reichman, Aston Martin’s creative genius, revealed that the Valour drew inspiration from the extraordinary success of the one-off Victor. Originally designed for a single customer, the Victor impressed audiences at Hampton Court and secured the esteemed Future Classic award. The Victor’s triumph sparked public interest, prompting numerous inquiries and inspiring Aston Martin to contemplate crafting more vehicles in the spirit of the manual transmission.
Mark Newton, the head of bespoke at Aston Martin, emphasised the brand’s dedication to sustaining the manual transmission, underlining the exceptional driving engagement it offers. He emphasized how a manual transmission keeps the driver actively engaged, transforming every journey into a visceral and memorable experience.
Reichman echoed this sentiment, noting that amidst trends leaning towards automation, there’s always a segment of enthusiasts seeking the opposite—an authentic driving engagement.
Inspired by the iconic V8 Vantage models of the 1970s and 1980s, the Valour masterfully blends vintage aesthetics with modern performance. The exterior exudes nostalgia with its clamshell hood and distinctive “horseshoe” vent, complemented by rounded headlights. Beneath the Valour’s meticulously sculpted hood lies a front-mounted, twin-turbocharged 5.2-litre V12 engine that roars with vigor, producing a remarkable 705hp and 753Nm of torque.
However, what truly sets the Valour apart is its transmission—a bespoke six-speed manual gearbox that Aston Martin proudly highlights.