1989 Aston Martin V8 Volante Convertible Registration no. F262 SYE Chassis no. 15764 Engine no. 5764
The most successful Aston Martin ever, the V8 survived the changes of ownership and financial upheavals of the 1970s, enjoying a record-breaking production run lasting from 1969 to 1988, with 2,919 cars sold. Described by former Aston Martin Chairman Victor Gauntlett as, 'a stylish thoroughbred, beautifully built, luxurious, fast and immensely safe,' the V8 was built in several variants, one of the more exclusive being the Volante convertible. Introduced in response to customers' demands for such a car, the latter first appeared in June 1978 equipped with carburettor induction. Arguably the ultimate in soft-top luxury, the newcomer boasted a lined, power-operated hood which, when erected, endowed the walnut embellished interior with all the solidity and refinement associated with the saloon version. Although its open-car aerodynamics meant that top speed suffered with the hood down, the Volante was nevertheless ranked among the world's fastest convertibles. Road tested by Motor magazine in 1979, the 'ultimate soft-top' recorded a 0-60mph time of 7.7 seconds and a top speed of 150mph. Mechanically the Volante followed the equivalent V8 or Vantage saloon of the period and in 1986 benefited, along with its closed cousin, from the reintroduction of fuel injection. Maximum power, which had dropped somewhat over the years, was restored to 305bhp in this final, Series 5 version. The latter is one of the rarer and more exclusive V8 variants, a mere 172 being built compared to 438 of the preceding carburettor-equipped model. V8 Volante chassis numbers ran from 15001 to 15849, a total of 849 cars. Aston Martin V8 Volante chassis number '15764' was purchased new in February 1989 by the current vendor who had it maintained by marque specialist, Ian Mason. Some ten years later he sold the car, which was purchased from Desmond Smail by keen Aston Martin owner, Mr Robert Clancy, for whom it was looked after by Nicholas Mee from circa 2002 onwards. When the Aston came back to Nicholas Mee for part exchange, the original owner took the opportunity to reacquire the car and has owned it since 1st June 2005. Nicholas Mee recalls fitting a handling upgrade, Vantage wheels and a sports exhaust to the car and remembers the hood being changed from fawn to black. The two most recent services have been carried out by Wren Classics: in June 2010 at 31,213 miles and May 2011 at 31,246 miles. Described by the vendor as in generally very good condition, the car is offered with sundry bills, Swansea V5C registration document and fresh MoT.