Aston Martin Confirms V-12 Hybrid Models and EV Powertrain for SUV Are Still Pending

Aston Martin Confirms V-12 Hybrid Models and EV Powertrain for SUV Are Still Pending


When Aston first showed the DBX concept back
in 2015, previewing what will become its forthcoming SUV, we were told it would have a pure electric
powertrain. Yet although the British sports-car brand
is indeed working on EV models, we now know the DBX won’t be launched as one of them. Instead, it will use conventional gasoline
and hybrid powertrains that will be drawn from the company’s technical partnership
with Daimler. “We have the capability to do [an EV], but
the plan right now is gasoline and hybridization,” Aston boss Andy Palmer told C/D. “What we
originally showed was a DBX concept, and the new platform has indeed been delivered with
the capability to have either gasoline or pure electric, but that [EV] technology gets
used first on the Lagonda.” Palmer is referring to the company’s forthcoming
luxury sedan, which was previewed at this year’s Geneva auto show and which will become
the first of a new electric-only brand. Having a closely related Aston-branded EV
sold alongside it from launch would have run the risk of confusing customers. With the Daimler partnership in the mix, the
DBX’s gasoline and hybrid powertrains likely will use the twin-turbocharged AMG V-8 that
Aston uses in the DB11, Vantage, and forthcoming DBS Superleggera. A plug-in hybrid system is expected to add
around 200 horsepower of electrical assistance to the V-8. More good news for fans of traditional Astons:
Palmer confirmed that the company is planning to hybridize its own V-12 to expand that powerplant’s
life span in the face of increasingly tough emissions standards in key markets. “We see a path that enables us to conform
with CAFE regulations with its hybridization,” he said. “When we conceptually started this discussion,
the idea was to prioritize keeping the V-12, because we think it’s the beating heart
of the company, and simply offset it with a pure electric version. But as that’s matured, you see this application
of hybridization instead. When you create a new engine, you normally
hope it’s going to last at least two generations, and I think so, too. A purist might argue that it’s better naturally
aspirated or not hybridized, but nevertheless a 12-cylinder is a 12-cylinder.” A sentiment we can all get behind.

About the Author: Michael Flood

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