Revised Aston Martin Vantage V8 launched‎ image

Aston Martin, the British manufacturer of luxury sports cars on Monday has announced a series of engineering updates and styling revamps for its Vantage range.

In short, the new, revised, 2012 Aston Martin V8 Vantage gets the new seven-speed Sportshift II auto box from the Vantage S, as well as quicker steering, bigger brakes and wider tires, all aping the S.

In the most comprehensive programme of enhancements since 2008, the revised 4.7-litre 420 bhp (426PS/313kW) entry-level V8 Vantage features a raft of improvements first seen in the Vantage S. The standard six-speed manual transmission remains, but the optional six-speed Sportshift™ automated manual transmission has now been replaced with the seven-speed Sportshift II.

According to the automaker, the shift action is faster and more refined than before, the closer ratios give a sportier feel and the extra gear boosts refinement at motorway speeds.

There are visual tweaks too, including a lower bumper – complete with an aerodynamic splitter – that houses a larger air intake. At the rear there’s a new (working) diffuser and what Aston calls ‘race-derived’ side sills.

The V12 Vantage remains unchanged, and of course the range tops out with the limited-edition (to no more than 150 pieces) V12 Zagato revealed to the public for the first time at last weekend’s Kuwait Concours d’Elegance.

Vantage range RRP* starts from £84,995 / €108,500 (Germany)