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  • “Let’s take the Aston out tonight” has a nice ring to it. But beyond that, I did end up with a feeling of van… er, wanting.

The Aston Martin V8 Vantage makes a huge case for itself when you’re stretching from Porsche 911 money. Be warned though – this is nowhere near as precise a tool, even if it is much sexier.

  • Comfort

    The Vantage is noticeably less comfy than big brother DB9 over distance - the shorter wheelbase and sportier set-up making themselves known. There is however, plenty of space for two. No, it hasn't got the DB9's rear seat-impressions, but it has got a practical hatchback and it's reasonably big back there too.

  • Performance

    Fast, but not earth-shattering. It makes 420bhp in what is not exactly a light car. But on our roads you will stay ahead of everything. And enjoy it.

  • Cool

    Even at this end of the Aston Martin range you're looking at one of the coolest cars on the planet. Pray you get to own one. Pray.

  • Quality

    There have been issues with Aston's build quality,and the electrical system and paint finish were a bit iffy, especially on early cars. Moreover, the cabin doesn't seem as special as a car like this should be.

  • Handling

    Proper sportscar stuff; well damped but firm, well-contained bodyroll. But steering feels dead and that can affect your confidence. Not quite as good as a 911.

  • Practicality

    Hatchback means that you can use the Vantage as your only car and get away with it, if seating for more than two isn't an issue. There's also a great feeling that the car is a manageable size and you can thread it through traffic because you can see out of it. Bonus points.

  • Running costs

    There's no premium to be had on a new Vantage anymore.