Monday, December 13, 2010

Exuding Gentlemanly Excess: Mirror review of Rapide


Did the reviewer actually drive the car? Sounds like an article straight out of the press kit. I usually keep my gentlemanly excess to myself rather than exuding it all over the unsuspecting public. Mirror Review


The epitome of ­elegance. The rarest and most beautiful four-door saloon in the world.

That’s the Aston Martin Rapide.

With a silhouette so ravishing it makes even the gorgeous Maserati ­Quattroporte look slightly clumsy, this is that unique thing – a four-seater supercar where there is no ­compromise.

The 5.9-litre V12 is a cultured yet apocalyptic gem of a ­power plant, good for taking you and three (smallish) passengers up to 188mph.

The soundtrack is pure ­Aston, the handling blade-sharp, the steering beguilingly progressive and the ride surprisingly fluent and smooth.

But most amazing is the fact that my entire 6ft 1in frame sat comfortably in the ­exquisitely upholstered rear accommodation.

Even ingress and egress was a dignified affair. For the man or woman who has everything, including two very fortunate youngsters and £140,000, this is the only ­four-seat hell-raiser that is worth considering.

And because it’s not a DB9, DBS or Vantage, it’s incredibly distinctive. If you want your personal aura to radiate the zenith of discrimination and good taste, the Rapide is as sophisticated as it gets.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re sing-songing up and down the paddle-shifts at redline revs, or sashaying your way round town, this is an Aston that feels very, very special indeed. What’s more, it doesn’t seem like a ­hatchback – it feels more like a cross between a DB9 and a Vantage – taut, aggressive and impossibly refined all at the same time.

It exudes gentlemanly excess at its very finest. The Rapide is very probably the classiest and most elegant modern Aston yet.

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