Leaving Las Vegas in an Aston Martin Rapide S
We end up running towards Vail on a road called the 10th Mountain Division Memorial Highway, past Leadville and up towards the White River National Forest. It's just as incredible as Monument and Vegas, but for entirely different reasons - big white mountains, crisp and frigid, compared to big red mesa, hot and dusty. And it's all - in American terms, at least - just up the road. We make it to Vail and basically collapse in several untidy heaps - we've covered four states, 2,048 kilometers, 30°C, some of the world's most incredible scenery and every type of surface and condition you care to mention.
A lengthy lesson in what it takes to be a usable GT car, then. And the Rapide S stands up. It is, however, not without its faults. If we're being brutal, the Rapide is not a revelation - if you weren't fond of the Rapide, then the S will do little to change your mind. It's still cramped in the back, not - ultimately - as relaxed in terms of ride as it could be. It is starting to feel its age - especially when you take into account the awkward and clunky satellite-navigation and screen animations, and can't offer the slick finality of advanced contemporary eight-speed gearboxes that would suit the car so well. Stuff available on GTs a third of the price.