IT’S GETTING HARD TO KEEP UP with progress at Aston Martin. The English sports-car maker used to operate at such a leisurely pace that it took more than 70 years from its 1913 founding to produce its 10,000th car. Now, with the impending launch of the DBX crossover, it could soon be producing that number of vehicles every two years. But the biggest surprise in Aston’s five-year plan is a new family of midengined models. You already know about the Valkyrie, the Adrian Newey fever dream that looks set to become the most capable track car ever to wear a license plate. The next fruit of that collaboration with the Red Bull Formula 1 team, the upcoming AM-RB 003, will be less extreme than the Valkyrie but more extreme than just about everything else.
The 003 will be built around a carbon-fiber tub inspired by the Valkyrie’s. Like that car, it uses a front-keel design, with airflow channeled past a teardrop-shaped cabin, but the 003’s passenger compartment is larger and aimed at packaging human occupants in something approaching comfort—if not exactly the everyday kind. An active suspension will vary ride height as well as damper compliance. “We intend to make the dynamic envelope between refinement and performance as broad as we can,” Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer told us at the 003’s Geneva-show debut.
While the Valkyrie will use a Cos