1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319

This lot has been removed from the website, please contact customer services for more information

Lot 242
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage

£ 150,000 - 180,000
US$ 180,000 - 220,000
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage
Registration no. FWD 284Y
Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
*Formerly owned by Mr. Rowan Atkinson
*Converted from left- to right-hand drive
*AMOC member-owned since 2003
*Extensive history

Footnotes

  • With the resurrection of the 'Vantage' name in 1977, Aston Martin enthusiasts everywhere breathed a sigh of relief; previously applied to high-power versions of the DB six-cylinder cars, it had been dormant since the V8's arrival back in 1969. A heavier car than its six-cylinder predecessor, the V8 suffered as emissions legislation became ever more strangulating, leading to concern that Aston Martin's traditional performance image might be lost. The arrival of the Vantage dispelled any such worries.

    Propelling Aston's V8 back into the supercar league was a tuned version of the existing 5,340cc engine breathing through a quartet of 48mm Weber carburettors rather than the standard 42mm instruments. Valves and ports were enlarged and the camshafts changed, the end result being an estimated maximum output of around 375-380bhp - in Rolls-Royce fashion the factory chose not to disclose the actual figure, merely claiming that power was 'adequate'.

    In 1978 the V8 Vantage earned the title of 'world's fastest accelerating production car' and throughout its life delivered outstanding performance by any standard, accelerating to 60mph in just 5.2 seconds on its way to a top speed of 175mph. With such high speeds attainable, aerodynamic refinements were called for. Thus the Vantage gained a deep front 'chin' spoiler, blanked off front grille and a boot lid spoiler, the latter being bolted on to the earliest cars and later integrated into the bodywork. There were commensurate improvements to the suspension, brakes and tyres.

    In 1986 an optional upgraded 'X-pack' engine with 432bhp on tap was made available, the engine number suffix changing from 'V' to 'X'. As the mechanical specification progressed so did the coachwork, with wheel arches flaring to accommodate wider rims, increasing the overall width by 2", and 16"-diameter wheels being introduced. Unlike the V8 saloon, which reverted to fuel injection in 1986, the V8 Vantage kept its 48IDF Weber carburettors to the end of production in December 1989, by which time 361 cars had been built.

    Originally finished in Imperial Burgundy with magnolia trim, chassis number '12319' was built in left-hand drive configuration and registered to Aston Martin Lagonda (as 'DUR 221Y') on 9th December 1982, passing to its first private owner, one Ahmed Faik, on 8th January 1983. The Vantage's third owner, actor Mr Rowan Atkinson, acquired the car in March 1984. Later in 1984 the car was converted (it is believed by Aston Martin Works Service) from left- to right-hand drive. The DVLA changed the chassis number to reflect this (see V5 document on file), though the original chassis plate is still in place on the car.

    While he owned the Vantage, Rowan was interviewed for an article in Autocar magazine (10th October 1984 edition, copy on file) in the course of which he observed: 'An Aston, particularly a burgundy one, is more like a Bentley. That's the reason for buying one, rather than a Ferrari. In the end, it has cost the same amount of money, but (is) more discreet.'

    Leaving Rowan's stewardship in July 1984, the Vantage subsequently passed through various hands before being acquired in 2003 by the last owner – a well-known AMOC member and racer - who has registered the car in the names of companies he has owned. Prior to his acquisition of the Vantage, Four Ashes Garage had rebuilt the engine, overhauled the steering rack, and replaced the oil cooler, starter motor, and windscreen (all in 2000). A detailed summary of all works undertaken throughout the car's life is on file (inspection recommended).

    Accompanying documentation includes of a complete run of MoT certificates and numerous service/maintenance bills, many issued by marque specialist Chapman Spooner and Four Ashes Garage. It should be noted that because the car has been owned by various limited companies throughout its life, many bills have been retained for accounting purposes and not placed in the file.
    Well maintained throughout its life, this much-loved Vantage is offered with its original handbook and service booklet, current MoT, and a V5C Registration Certificate.
Contacts
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
1981 Aston Martin V8 Vantage  Chassis no. V8VOL/12319
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For Motor Cars a 15% Buyer's Premium is payable on the first £50,000 of the final Hammer Price of each Lot, and 12% on any amount by which the Hammer Price exceeds £50,000.

For Automobilia and Registrations Numbers the Buyer's Premium is 25% on the first £100,000 of the Hammer Price, 20% from £100,001 to £2,000,000 of the Hammer Price, and 12% on the balance thereafter.

VAT at the standard rate is payable on the Premium by all Buyers, unless otherwise stated.

Payment Notices

For payment information please refer to the sale catalogue.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licences please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

App