The Aston Martin Vantage GTE's foundation is the V8 Vantage road car. The Vantage GTE uses the very same aluminium chassis as the road car and the core of its engine, the cylinder block, cylinder heads and crank shaft.
There are minimum weight limits in sports car racing and for the GTE class it is 1245 kg, around 400 kg less than the road car. Significant weight is saved in the bodywork where carbon fibre panels replace the already lightweight aluminium in the road car. The interior of the car is also stripped as items like electrically-controlled leather seats, in-car entertainment and sound proofing are not needed.
The overall shape and silhouette of the car has to remain the same under the regulations, however aerodynamics are crucial in enhancing performance.
The new 2016/17 GTE regulations allow for significant changes to the car’s aerodynamics to increase downforce and reduce lap times.
The most striking of these is the ability to fit an extended rear diffuser, which can now protrude 100 mm beyond the rear of the car. The rear wing can also be extended to the same distance. At the front, the splitter has been redesigned to improve airflow under the car, to optimise the new diffuser.
From a safety viewpoint the GTE will feature the latest 8862 seat; impact foam in the driver’s door; as well as removable door glazing and a mandatory roof access hatch to aid driver extraction in an emergency.
The Aston Martin GTE has been one of the most successful GT race cars in recent years; notably being victorious in the Le Mans 24 Hours, European Le Mans Series and multiple victories and championships in the FIA World Endurance Championship.
Ross Gunn and Beechdean AMR will be competing to retain the ELMS Championship in the 2017 season.