Today Aston Martin has officially pulled the covers off it’s 2024 GT3 contender. The 2024 Vantage GT3 alongside the international debut of the British manufacturer’s new road-going Vantage model.
This comes after the new Vantage GT3 made its race debut in January at the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona, but before its makes it’s FIA WEC race debut at Qatar next month.
The 2024 Vantage GT3 is a comprehensive evolution of the recently retired Vantage AMR GTE and GT3 cars, which made their debut in 2018.
Sharing their mechanical architecture – and that of the new Vantage road car – it is built around Aston Martin’s bonded aluminium chassis structure and powered by the same twin-turbo 4.0-litre V8 engine.
It features an all-new nose-to-tail aerodynamic package, comprehensively revised suspension and state-of-the-art electronics.
The nose itself is a large one-piece clamshell made from carbon fibre, with a quick-release design to facilitate rapid removal and replacement. It houses a full-width laser light and a shorter splitter; the effect of which, Aston Martin says, moves the centre of pressure rearwards to reduce pitch sensitivity and aid stability.
Large louvres in the top of the front wheel arches also evacuate high-pressure air to reduce lift, with an even larger stack of louvres in the rear arches allowing high pressure to escape from the rear to reduce drag.
“Simultaneously revealing the new Vantage and Vantage GT3 race car underlines Aston Martin’s commitment to building the world’s finest sports car, and then proving its capabilities on-track,” said Marco Mattiacci, the global chief brand and commercial officer of Aston Martin.
“It also signals a closer relationship between our road and race programmes, with Aston Martin Racing benefitting from the exceptional pool of talent, experience and knowledge forged in Formula 1 and found throughout Aston Martin Performance Technologies.
“The result is a truly state-of-the-art GT racer; one that clearly shares its DNA with the latest Vantage road car, yet is perfectly evolved to suit the latest GT3 regulations.
“Descended from a succession of multiple world championship-winning predecessors, the new Vantage GT3 is proving irresistible to an impressive international roster of leading GT racing teams. Hungry for victory and poised to build upon Aston Martin’s extraordinary track record, the world’s greatest endurance races are firmly in the Vantage GT3’s sights.”
It has been built to comply with all FIA GT3 class regulations, including the new-for-2024 LMGT3 category in which torque sensors are mandated. It is also the first product to come from a collaboration between Aston Martin Racing (AMR) and Aston Martin Performance Technologies (AMPT),
“The new GT3 is our first opportunity to use AMPT to play a role in leveraging the capabilities, attitude and methodologies of all of Aston Martin’s various nerve centres, which we’ve then combined with the unrivalled GT programme management expertise of AMR,” added Adam Carter, Aston Martin’s head of endurance motorsport.
“The GT racing programme will serve as a development lab that will lead to an increasing transfer of knowledge and approach into future Aston Martin road cars.”
Aston Martin says the new Vantage GT3 upgrades are focused on “addressing some of the old car’s more challenging handling characteristics, to make the new GT3 as driveable as possible for both professional and amateur drivers alike.”
Its extensive test programme – featured more than 12,000 kilometres of running and included a 30-hour test – was completed late last year with a combination of Aston Martin’s factory drivers, plus selected amateurs taking the wheel.
“The focus on the new Vantage GT3 was to increase their performance window and make something that would work at any circuit, on any tyre and with any driver. We also had to work to the new regulations, so this required additional changes,” Aston Martin Racing’s head of performance Gustavo Betelli explained.
“These new generation GT3 cars are more dependent than ever on aerodynamic downforce, so we wanted to make the car more stable under braking. The old car would dive a lot under braking, so we had to try and control the pitch with the rear suspension set-up. But this meant it was stiff, which made it quite snappy and, also over-worked the tyres.
“Working heavily on damper tuning, we have found a much better balance with the new car so we can generate the downforce without compromising the suspension set-up. The result is much-improved progression and greater stability in all conditions. It also works its tyres much more evenly, so teams have more options on strategy.
“The feedback from drivers who’ve tested it has been overwhelmingly positive. Especially the amateur racers, who have been able to achieve lap times that are much closer to the Pros.
“Now we need to go racing!”
Aston Martin is targeting 30 customer deliveries (including upgrade kits for customers wishing to upgrade their current cars) during the 2024 calendar year.
In addition to Magnus Racing and Heart Of Racing’s programmes in IMSA GTD which are already underway, the car is also already confirmed for the FIA WEC and GT World Challenge Europe. Heart of Racing and D’Station Racing will race in the WEC’s new LMGT3 category, while Comtoyou Racing and Walkenhorst Motorsport are confirmed for European SRO programmes.
The base price for the car is expected to be £575,000, with a cost-per-kilometre figure “in line with the previous model.”
Images courtesy of Aston Martin