Aston Martin on Wednesday gave us our first look at the powerful V-12 engine that will drive its Valkyrie hypercar next year.
The engine is developed by Cosworth, a British UK company, which has delivered a number of race-winning Formula 1 engines over the years, and it is destined to be the most powerful natural aspirated mill ever mounted on a production vehicle.
Aston Martin has confirmed a peak output of 1,000 horsepower and 545 pound-feet of torque. It is lower than the 1,130 hp, Cosworth pointed out in August, but still an amazing experience considering the lack of forced induction. And the final production of Valkyrie will be higher still as the electrification expert Rimac develops the car's hybrid system, where more details will be released at a later date.
The V-12 has a displacement of 6.5 liters and cylinders knock at 65 degrees, making it relatively low. Top power arrives at 10,500 rpm. And the peak at 7000 rpm, and the engine continues to scream at 11,100 rpm. Rødline. The sound it reminds of an old-school F1 car.
The last bit should not come as a surprise, as Cosworth's story in motorsport's top echelon. In fact, lots of F1 know-how like materials and methods have gone into the development of Valkyrie's engine. This is especially evident in the weight.
Aside from the large castings, namely the block, cylinder heads, swamp and structural camshades, most of the internal components of the engine are made of solid material. These include titanium designs and F1-spec stamps. The result is an engine weighing only 454 pounds. By comparison, Cosworth's 3.0-liter F1 V-10, the last before weight limit, was weighted 213 pounds. However, it would weigh closer to 462 pounds if scaled up to match 6.5-liter displacement of Valkyrie's V-12. Valk customers could even choose a lack of clear coat on the engine's carbon fiber intake to save precious ounces.
Aston Martin Valkyrie in close-up form
Considering that the engine is a fully stressed element in the car (the carbon fiber trolley is mounted on the front while the transmission and rear wheels are mounted rearwards – like in an F1 car) and the level of technology in the combustion system weight down was a major headache for engineers. Emissions were another problem, as port instead of more advanced direct fuel injection was used, a feature that made it possible to meet performance targets without the use of gasoline particulate filters.
Unfortunately, the high-grade nature of the engine means that large service intervals will be shorter than most performance cars, even exotic. Cosworth CEO of Powertrain Bruce Wood told Car and Driver In an interview published Wednesday, the engine is expected to last about 62,000 miles, at which time it will be rebuilt.
"The reality is that if somebody came to that point we would take the engine out, remove it and break it," said Wood. "If the block was fine and not exaggerated, there would be no reason not to rebuild it with new stamps and valves."
The Valkyries Mercedes-AMG One rival engine is also expected to have a limited lifespan. We remind you that one's engine is actually the same device used in Mercedes-AMG's current crop of championship-winning F1 cars, in this case a small 1.6-liter turbocharged V-6.
Valkyrie project manager Adrian Newey, Red Bull Racing's F1 aerodynamics, explained in August the reason behind the decision to go with a big V-12. He said that a turbocharged V-6 was originally considered, but V-12 was eventually picked because of what it allowed the design team to do with the use of the engine as a structural component, as the V-12 is very well-balanced engines with good NVH properties. And weight was not a problem, as the V-6 turbosystem, including all plumbing and intercoolers, would make the engine the same as the V-12.
Deliveries of Aston Martin Valkyrie start next year for the roadcar and 2020 for the only AMR Pro version that is only traceable. Aston Martin will build only 175 Valkyries up, of which 25 will be AMR Pros, and yes all construction sites will be sold.