With 17 years service, the Ford Duratec V6 derived Aston Martin 6.0L V12 has lived a long and powerful life. But increasing emissions, fuel economy and power demands means that it's time has been limited for a while. In the words of Aston’s chief engineer Brian Fitzsimons: “Further evolution of the current V12 as a naturally aspirated engine was not an option due to the environmental and legislative landscape that existed and was continuing to evolve.”
So what does that mean? Less displacement and add boost. The clean slate V12 is a 5.7L with a pair of twin-scroll turbos, one for each bank. It keeps port fuel injection, and adds cylinder deactivation. The system changes up which bank is deactivated, and the system keeps the valves operating normally during cylinder shut down. Most systems keep the valves closed, which reduces pumping losses. The new engine is ready for start-stop tech, although it's not clear if that will be implemented when it launches.
Unlike some competitors, the new engine does not use a dry-sump oil system, and instead Aston has optimized the traditional wet-sump for high g-force track use. They have stated that this better meets their packaging and efficiency targets.
What does all of this give us? How about 600 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque from 1,500 rpm. That's 32 hp and 51 lb-ft up on the old engine. Aston's engineers state there's no need to worry that the turbos will ruin the trademark V12 sound, indicating that the engine and exhaust are optimized "for a more distinct edge leading toward a crisp crescendo at high engine speeds."
The new engine should debut in the DB11 later this year. In the meantime, here's Aston Martin's teaser to whet your ears.