Built by Aston Martin and Red Bull Racing, the Aston Martin Valkyrie hypercar is on course to become the stuff of every boy racers’ dreams. Although it’s still under development, the company says it’s “95% of the way there” with the exterior.
Designed in part by Adrian Newey, Red Bull Racing’s chief technical officer and the world’s most successful Formula 1 designer, the car’s makers claim it will be the fastest street-legal car in the world. The Valkyrie is rumored to produce 1130 hp from its naturally aspirated 6.5-liter V12 and will weigh around 1000kgs. Great attention has been taken to ensure forward and peripheral side-to-side vision is virtually uninterrupted. To avoid any unwanted aerodynamic disturbance, traditional door mirrors have been replaced by discreetly mounted rear facing cameras in each of the Aston Martin Valkyrie’s flanks. The all-enveloping bodywork and roof-mounted engine air intake means there is no rear window, and no requirement for a rearview mirror.
“It’s been a tremendous challenge to make the interior packaging work,” Aston Martin creative director of interiors Matt Hill said. “We’ve embraced Red Bull Racing’s Formula 1 ethos and approached (it) from a different angle than conventional road car design. In this instance, we’ve started from a position where you think something is impossible and work at it until you find a way to make it work. We’ve been fighting for millimeters everywhere, but the battle has been worth it, as it’s been fantastic seeing customers try the interior buck for size. They love the ritual of getting in and how it feels to be sat behind the wheel. They’re also genuinely surprised at how the car just seems to swallow them. You really do have to sit in it to believe there is genuine space for two large adults.”
The design of the Valkyrie, as with F1 cars, is dictated largely by aerodynamics, with the generation of downforce being one of the engineering priorities. These goals have dictated much of the car’s bodywork, with the lower tub contours following the space between the venturi tunnels that run along the sides of the cockpit floor. This lends the Valkyrie the appearance of sitting high off the ground, though in reality the seating position is effectively on the floor of the tub itself. These tunnels are responsible for much of the car’s downforce, drawing air to the rear diffuser while keeping the top of the car largely free from other aerodynamic devices aimed at generating downforce.
Fun fact, the Aston Martin badge itself was actually deemed too heavy for the car, but Aston Martin felt that a sticker would be too cheap. The solution: A chemical-etched aluminum badge just 70 microns thick – 30 percent thinner than a human hair – and 99.4 percent lighter than the winged badge that Aston uses on its production cars.
Marek Reichman, chief creative officer of Aston Martin, said: “The Valkyrie is an incredibly special car that demands an equally remarkable name; an uncompromising car that leaves nothing in reserve. The connotations of power and honour, of being chosen by the Gods, are so evocative and so pertinent to a car that only a fortunate few will ever experience.”
Aston Martin is making just 150 cars, and 25 track-only models. A prototype is reported to be ready sometime next year and customers can expect their completely customised car in 2019. The Aston Martin Valkyrie is priced at $3,000,000.