Aston Martin’s Creative Chief Says the Valhalla is Just the Beginning of Luxury EVs

Aston Martin’s Creative Chief Says the Valhalla is Just the Beginning of Luxury EVs
Image: Aston Martin

Aston Martin has today officially unveiled the Valhalla – a kick-ass hybrid car that can be yours in 2024 if you have some spare change laying around.

The Valhalla is touted by the company as a “truly driver focused mid-engined hybrid supercar”. 

Valhalla is Aston Martin’s second foray into hybrid. The company’s ‘electrification journey’ technically started with the Valkyrie. The Valkyrie was back in 2017 touted by the company as the world’s fastest street legal car. Internally, Aston Martin has always referred to the Valhalla as ‘Son of Valkyrie’.

In making the Valhalla, the 109 year-old company says it took learnings from Valkyrie, but also its involvement with Formula 1. And, although looking like it does, Valhalla has been made to be a more usable, everyday supercar.

It boasts a mid-engined 950bhp gasoline/battery electric powertrain, new carbon fibre structure and aerodynamics shaped by the Valkyrie. It has an all-new PHEV powertrain, which features three motors; foremost of these is a rear-mid-mounted 4.0 litre twin-turbo bespoke V8 engine. The most advanced, responsive and highest performing V8 engine ever fitted to an Aston Martin, the company says. It also features a flat-plane crankshaft for increased responsiveness.

Revving to 7200rpm and developing 750PS, it sends drive exclusively to the rear axle. Exhaling through a lightweight exhaust system with active flaps for an adjustable and authentic Aston Martin sound character it also features top-exit tailpipes to maximise visual and aural drama.

Here’s a few pics I snapped at the unveiling:

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Image: Asha Barbaschow/Gizmodo Australia
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Image: Asha Barbaschow/Gizmodo Australia
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Image: Asha Barbaschow/Gizmodo Australia

Supplementing this new V8 engine is a 150kW/400V battery hybrid system utilising a pair of E Motors; one mounted on the front axle and the other on the rear axle. The electric system contributes a further 204PS for a headline combined power output of 950PS. When driven in EV mode, battery power is directed exclusively to the front axle. In other driving modes battery power is split between front and rear axles, the percentage sent to each axle constantly varies according to driving demands. The Valhalla also boasts an all-new 8-speed DCT transmission.

In the country for the F1 in Melbourne, Gizmodo Australia had the opportunity to pick the brains of one of the men behind the Valhalla, with a few questions on this ‘electrification journey’ James Bond’s favourite car maker is on.

Marek Reichman, Aston Martin Lagonda’s chief creative officer, told us the shift to electrification was important, and that the tech has many advantages for a GT car and a sports car.

“Without giving too much away of the future for many, many users of Aston Martins, the GT journey is one of drive – get to a destination, rest, and then go somewhere else,” he said, somewhat cryptically. “Electrification really suits that and it’s an opportunity for a designer because there is a relative amount of freedom that comes with the packaging of electrification, because you’re not dealing with a V12/V8 or an inline six … for me as a designer, it’s a huge opportunity, because I can accentuate some of the proportions and it’s a technology that we need to see in our cars as they develop.”

But Aston Martin has to start somewhere, and Reichman said that’s why the company landed on hybridisation for the Valhalla.

“When you look at hybridisation for performance, with something like Valhalla, the hybrid system is obviously adding to the performance of the product taking from 950 to over 1000 horsepower with the added electrification through hybridisation,” he explained.

“It’s not just about ultimate performance, it’s about drivability as well and what hybridisation does, it can smooth out the delivery of power.”

If you look at it this way, it’s adding to the performance of the car, which as a driver’s car, is what Valhalla is all about. Reichman would argue hybridisation really suits the brand.

“A Formula 1 car effectively has a hybrid system – and they’re pretty kick ass,” he added.

“We start the journey through Valkyrie and Valhalla and as we come to full electrification, when we get there, it will be simply the best on the market,” he said.

All of this means we can expect Aston Martin to be a fierce competitor in the EV space.