“One step at a time,” says CEO Andy Palmer.
Aston Martin, a brand that’s considered hallowed and holy to many car enthusiasts, is on the up. With the release of its new DB11 flagship and the continued info-drip of their Valkyrie hypercar (being developed in cooperation with the Red Bull Formula 1 team), the Gaydon manufacturer has solid plans for the future, which include a possible luxury-limousine sub-brand and new products to take on more mainstream supercars head-on.
Speaking to Car & Driver, Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer said that the Valkyrie hypercar is merely a step in the direction they want to take to eventually tackle Ferrari, Lamborghini, and McLaren. “The reason we’re doing [the Valkyrie] is to create a halo car, but also to create DNA for amid-engined sports-car range.” The CEO believes that credibility in a mid-engined vehicle, an architecture Aston Martin has never really explored before, would be best established by an out-and-out flagship like the Valkyrie, before moving “downwards, one step at a time.”
That top-down strategy means that while the Valkyrie is full-steam ahead, the lesser mid-engined models are not entirely confirmed for production. Whether or not they make it to that phase depends on AM hitting their sales targets. And should those cars make production, it won’t be any time soon: Aston Martin have the next-generation Vantage as well as the DBX crossover in the pipelines already, with the latter pipped to account for up to 50% of Aston Martin’s sales.
In the interview, the CEO also spoke about what he has in mind for the ‘Lagonda’ name, which he sees as a marque that could sit alongside established ultra-luxury names like Rolls-Royce and Bentley. With the global acclaim of the Aston Martin Lagonda Taraf (which Australia doesn’t get, boo), the company is now looking into whether a luxury sub-brand would be a viable option, and how many models it ought to offer.
At the time of writing, nothing has been set in stone, because these plans hinge entirely on Aston Martin achieving their sales targets.