Similar in principle to the basis of the Lotus Elise, the VH platform uses aluminium extrusions and castings, bonded and riveted together. This is both light (the chassis weighs just 197kg) and particularly well suited to convertible cars, with the majority of the car’s rigidity coming from the chassis rather than exterior body panels.
That said, for the roadster Aston has included additional strengthening, but the extent is minimal and it adds just 14kg to the chassis weight.
Other than the new fabric roof, which raises and lowers at the touch of a button in 22 seconds, and the addition of a pair of elegant buttresses to the rear deck, the roadster’s design and construction mirrors that of the coupé with aluminium, steel and composite body panels.
The suspension architecture is also identical: aluminium double wishbones, coils springs and anti-roll bars front and rear. However, for the roadster Aston has tweaked the V8 Vantage set-up, increasing spring stiffness and raising the ride height – changes that will find their way into the coupé. The V12 S gets an adaptive suspension set-up with rear getting dual-rate coil springs.