Test Driving the Electric Future

Aston Martin is once again wowing drivers with two new vehicles that have all the pizazz and none of the pollution.

The luxury carmaker held its inaugural Electric Future event in late June to showcase two all-electric models — The Rapide E and Lagonda Vision Concept — at Aston Martin Mayfair in London.

Relaunched as the world’s first zero-emission luxury brand in 2018, Aston Martin’s Lagonda line aims to leverage the latest advances in electrification and autonomous driving technologies while maintaining “a unique niche in the market,” says Marek Reichman, chief creative officer at Aston Martin Lagonda. 

Aston Martin Lagonda Vision Concept. 

“We set ourselves an ambitious target to be the world’s first luxury electric brand,” he says. “[Lagonda] is for the high-end luxury customer who wants to explore and be autonomous while remaining mindful of the impact they are having on the enviro-ment. Lagonda will achieve this but it will also delight the people who get to enjoy its unique internal environment.”

Aston Martin Rapide E.

The Electric Future featured the Rapide E, the company’s first electric sports car, as well as the Lagonda Vision Concept, the latter of which first turned heads at the Geneva Motor Show in 2018. The sleek vehicle’s four-passenger interior doubles as a stylish space, with cashmere interiors and swiveling fronts seats. The Vision Concept is designed as a self-driving vehicle, and it’s expected to enter production around 2022.

Meanwhile, the Rapide E has already delighted drivers across Europe and Asia, making a flashy debut in Morocco and Shanghai in spring. With a design that was based on its V12 predecessor, the Rapide AMR, it’s no surprise that the Rapide E clocks in at a max of 155 mph — all on an 800-volt battery. 

The car boasts twin electric motors that produce 610PS and 950Nm of torque, allowing it to zip from 0 to 60 mph in less than four seconds, and can manage the jump from 50 to 70 mph in 1.5 seconds.

On the inside, the car’s digital gadgets include a sleek display for battery and energy information, and Aston has also developed a smartphone app to monitor the car’s battery life and parking spot, among other features.

According to John Caress, vehicle line director, the Rapide E drives a little more than 200 miles on battery power alone, which can then be recharged from 0 to 80 percent in just 35 minutes — so you’re back up and on the road in no time. It’s expected to enter production at the end of the year, with a limited run of 155 vehicles.

Aston Martin Rapide E interior. 

Aston Martin Rapide E charges at its electric port. 

“Rapide E is proof of Aston Martin’s commitment to its Second Century Plan. Having an electric powertrain is no longer just a vision for our company, it’s reality. We are producing fully electric vehicles which will form part of our future strategy that will culminate when the first Lagonda vehicle enters the market,” he says.

Pricing is not yet available for these models. Explore all Aston Martin vehicles at astonmartin.com.

All photos and featured photo courtesy of Aston Martin. 

This article originally appeared in the Summer 2017 edition of The High End magazine. For more information about The High End, click here.

Ferrari introduces the 812 Superfast, the most high-performance vehicle the brand has ever launched.

By Stacey Staum

At the intersection of unprecedented engine technology and sleek modern design awaits the Ferrari 812 Superfast. In a nod to Ferrari’s 70-year history, the 812 Superfast features a 12-cylinder engine, the power unit that fueled the first vehicles bearing the Prancing Horse name in 1947. The 800 CV engine makes the 812 Superfast the most powerful road-going vehicle Ferrari has ever built.

While the 812 Superfast boasts unrivaled engine capabilities, Ferrari took care to ensure that the vehicle delivered a class-topping performance. The F1 dual-clutch transmission complements the engine’s performance by slashing response times, creating a feeling of power and speed in acceleration, and generating the auditory perception of rising rpms.

The 812 Superfast is also an aesthetically eye-catching addition to a brand with an unparalleled reputation for beauty and form. The muscular wheel arches create an appearance of power that is justified by the V12 engine under its hood. Where form meets function, the sculpted vents along the front bumper and along the wheel wells are a testament to the car’s unrivaled performance abilities.

The interior of the 812 Superfast matches the sporty character of the vehicle’s exterior. The dash elements appear to float and are angled towards the driver, creating the appearance of a cockpit that highlights the relationship between vehicle and motorist. The steering wheel, with commands, satellite pods, and contrasting materials, provides a unique driver experience that exudes class and sophistication.

Under the hood and within the cabin, the Ferrari 812 Superfast boasts unprecedented performance and style for the discerning motorist.

The manufacturer’s base suggested retail price is $308,000.

Photos courtesy of Ferrari 

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