Excuse the long title, these cars have extremely long names. Over the weekend to end the frankly unbelievable 2016 Monterey Car Week was the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance show. Always a great place to see pristine classics, manufactures fight over crowd attention by showing off their latest “X-Factor” cars.
2016 was no exception. Both Lamborghini and Aston Martin showed off topless versions of their already well received coupes. Both the Centenario and the Vanquish Zagato were only unveiled earlier this year but their topless counterparts come just in time for the summer.
Let’s start with the Aston. It’s pretty much identical to the Zagato Coupe, from the larger grille to the redesigned rear end with ‘Z’ shape vents and of course all those intricate bronze details.
The biggest difference is obviously the lack of a roof. But since we’re talking about a Zagato Aston here, that means it forgoes the stunning ‘double bubble roof’. However, if you live somewhere with constant sunshine there are few things on this planet that are as glamorous as a convertible Aston Martin. No need to discuss, that’s just a fact.
With the roof down, the 99 people who’ve bought one of these will be able to hear Aston’s old-school 6.0-litre naturally aspirated V12. Despite being over a decade old, that engine is still capable or producing 600hp/441kW and a 0-100 km/h sprint of 3.7 seconds. Top speed is around 320 km/h.
So if you missed out on the Coupe allocation, the Zagato Volante is the perfect alternative. I mean, how could you not love those British and Italian lines? The price is around £500,000, or $901,900 NZ monies. There is a price to pay for beauty.
Speaking of Italian lines, how utterly flamboyant and quintessentially Italian is the Centenario? Built to celebrate Ferruccio Lamborghini’s 100th birthday, the Centenario is befitting of a company that gave us some of the craziest looking cars ever made.
I’ll be perfectly honest and admit I wasn’t blown away by the Centenario Coupe unveiled at this year’s Geneva Motor Show. Yes, it’s a striking looking car but it looked like a somewhat odd Aventador. Lamb’s previous special run models such as the Veneno, and in particular, the Reventon were much better to my eyes.
But by taking the roof, the Centenario suddenly looks a lot more dramatic and therefore more of a Lamborghini. Actually, I genuinely think Lamborghini convertibles and roadsters are infinitely nicer than their tin-top siblings.
Anyway, looks aside this is more than an Aventador Roadster in fancy dress. There’s a lot of carbon-fibre at work here. The monocoque and aero bits are all made of the lightweight stuff. The 6.5-litre V12 engine pumps out slightly more power than a ‘regular’ Aventador too, at 770hp/566kW. Inside, there’s some modern gadgetry such as a larger infotainment screen complete with Apple CarPlay. How very modern.
Like the Coupe, only 20 will be made. All have been spoken for and each one sold for around £2,000,000 (roughly $3,607,000). Ah Pebble Beach, where the real world simply doesn’t apply. Until next year then.