At the tail end of last year, Aston Martin revived the classic Lagonda moniker for use on a highly exclusive, V12-engined super saloon called the ‘Taraf’. It would only be sold in the Middle East in left-hand driver, and just 200 would be made.
Well, we now have confirmation that Aston will extend the availability of this four-door supercar to the UK, Europe and South Africa, meaning we’ll get one over here in Blighty, in proper right hand drive.
The production run remains pegged at 200 cars, however, but new Aston boss Dr Andy Palmer was adamant that the UK and Europe get the opportunity to purchase this very limited-edition super saloon.
The Taraf is based – like every current Aston – on the firm’s VH architecture, hand-built in Gaydon in a dedicated factory previously used to build the gorgeous One-77.
We’re told it’ll run a version of that 6.0-litre V12 up front, so expect around 565bhp and – fingers crossed – the new eight-speed ZF automatic gearbox featured in the new Rapide and Vanquish, driving the rear wheels. 0-62mph? No word, but we’d bet on something dipping under four seconds, and a top speed of around 200mph.
Look around the exterior and you’ll no doubt notice the references to the original William Towns-designed Lagonda from the 1970s, most notably in the C-pillar, Aston telling us they’ve made extensive use of carbon fibre for the body panels.
“I’m particularly pleased that we have been able to engineer Lagonda for right-hand drive markets,” Palmer said, “meaning that I’m sure we will see the car in use on Aston Martin’s ‘home ground’ of the UK in due course.”
It’s certainly a striking thing, and comes from a company that appears on the cusp of a very special era indeed. Aston is working on a new chassis architecture for the next generation of supercars – which will feature Mercedes-AMG’s new turbocharged V8 engine – has recently launched the Vulcan and Vantage GT3, and has also managed to sneak in a Bond car too, in the shape of the rather lovely DB10.