Will the track‑only Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro be the ultimate hypercar?
The road car may not be out yet but already Aston Martin is finalising the design of the track-only version of the new Valkyrie, as things get hotter and hotter in the hypercar stakes.
And it seems that in this form the Valkyrie will deliver what the man behind it, Formula One design legend Adrian Newey, has always promised: that it will be F1 fast.
The ultimate Valkyrie, badged AMR Pro, “will be capable of achieving lap times to rival those of a contemporary F1 or LMP1 car” reasserts the firm, claiming a top speed of 250mph and 3.3g of lateral acceleration with up to 3.5g under braking. That’s all according to Red Bull Technology’s simulator anyway; it is thought the actual car has yet to turn a wheel in anger.
While Aston says such pace is “previously unthinkable in a car derived from a fully homologated road car” the track version – of which just 25 are to be made, all sold – is extensively changed over the road-registerable Aston Martin Valkyrie.
There are, as yet, no firm figures but the track car has been “fully optimised” to be lighter and more powerful with “significantly increased” downforce. That means a new aerodynamics package with all aero surfaces revised for more downforce, along with larger front and rear spoilers.
The powertrain – naturally-aspirated 6.5-litre Cosworth-built V12, backed up by a Rimac Energy Recovery System – gets new control systems, loses the road car’s stringent emission controls and develops more power and torque.
The AMR Pro looks to the world of racing for much of its running gear, with new suspension uprights and carbon wishbones, F1-style carbon-carbon brakes, and 18-inch wheels running Michelin racing tyres to the same spec as the boots used by an LMP1 car in the World Endurance Championship.
The windscreen and side windows are polycarbonate, the carbon-fibre bodywork is lighter, lightweight moulded race seats are fitted and the heater fan and infotainment screens of the road car have been ditched.
The result? If the road car was meant to have a power/weight ratio of 1,000bhp per tonne then…well, who knows? We can only presume the Valkyrie AMR Pro will have more than 1,000bhp and weigh under 1,000kg, in which case it’s likely to pip its biggest rival, the Mercedes-AMG Project One. That car, powered by an actual F1 engine, is said to have 992bhp, although it is not yet known how much it will weigh in at. Its top speed is said to be 218mph.
Despite the Valkyrie AMR Pro’s race spec, this is a car that will never race. Instead, the 25 owners will be able to drive their cars at a series of dedicated “track events” at race circuits around the world. But before that happens all 25 will be taught to handle the car using the same facilities as Aston Martin Red Bull Racing’s F1 drivers. The programme includes time in the simulator and professional on-track tuition, plus fitness training.
Adrian Newey, the most successful Formula One designer of all-time with 10 world championship-winning F1 cars to his credit said his creating his dream road car came with some constraints. “However, with the track-only Valkyrie AMR Pro we have the freedom to create an extreme evolution that makes no such concessions.
“While the core elements of the road and track versions are shared, every aspect of the AMR Pro – aerodynamics, chassis, powertrain and weight – has been optimised to significantly extend the performance envelope. It offers a level of track performance significantly beyond any previous two-seat closed-roof car.”
Releasing details of the Valkyrie AMR Pro now can be seen as a pre-emptive strike ahead of 10 December when Mclaren unveils first details of its next Ultimate Series car, the P15. To make its global debut at the Geneva Motor Show in March McLaren’s hypercar contender sacrifices everyday usability in order to be the “ultimate road-legal track car”.
That’s a title Mercedes-AMG will be after as well with the AMG Project One, though as with the McLaren it is not known if like the Aston there will be a pure track version. Either way, that Valkyrie-vs-Project One-vs-P15 is shaping up as quite a battle…