6 Jul, 2016
Aston-Red Bull AM-RB 001 supercar

Aston Martin is partnering with F1 team Red Bull to build the world's most extreme supercar. The car, called AM-RB 001 for obvious reasons, has been revealed in prototype form. It is engineered by Red Bull's star designer Adrian Newey with styling polished by Aston's design chief Marek Reichman. As you would expect something designed by Newey, it looks more like a Le Mans race car lightly converted for road use, and there is some resemblance to F1 cars at the nose and underbody. It is built with massive venturis under the car to generate ground effect. The car also looks very low (believed to be less than 1000 mm), so the driver needs to tolerate with an F1-style driving position. Access to the cockpit is provided by a pair of small gullwing doors built into the glasshouse.

Aston said the styling of this prototype is about 70-80% close to the final production car, which is expected to be delivered to the first customer in 2018. However, it already set some performance targets: the car should weigh less than 1000 kg, while power to weight ratio is 1 horsepower per kg. Powering the car is a brand-new, high-revving naturally aspirated V12 that has nothing to do with any existing Aston engines. It is assisted with KERS electric motors to produce the required power. The motor also serves the purpose of reversing, so the Red Bull-designed transmission can save the reverse gear. However, the firm declines to reveal more details about the engine and transmission at this stage.

Naturally, the chassis and body are all carbon-fiber. The adaptive suspensions employ pushrods and inboard springs and dampers like F1 cars. The brakes are carbon-ceramic.

Adrian Newey's expertise is in aerodynamics, so it is not surprising to see the car employs his innovative "blown exhaust", i.e. the exhaust exits in front of the rear spoiler to improve downforce generated. Another way to reduce drag is to skip door mirrors for a reverse camara.

Aston plans to build between 99 and 150 cars and then another 25 track cars. The road car will cost about £2-3 million. The biggest selling point is, it will be faster than the current F1 cars in Silverstone, thanks to its superior power and aerodynamics unrestricted by racing rules.

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