Have You Ever Seen A Flying Aston Martin?

Well, now you have.

When you think of cars that make great rally machines, I’d wager that an Aston Martin V8 Vantage GT4 probably isn’t towards the top of your list. Thankfully, Makela Auto Tuning in Finland thought it would be a great idea to convert a GT4 race car into an FIA R-GT class rally car.

The Aston was in action at the secluded Forest Rally Stage at last weekend’s Goodwood Festival of Speed, which was host to some amazing cars of rallying’s past and present. Almost all of those were taking it in turns to cover the relatively short, but technical stage set out beside the top of the hill climb course, and driving the V8 Vantage was French rally legend François Delecour.

2017 Festival of Speed - Aston Martin Rally Speedhunters by Paddy McGrath-2
2017 Festival of Speed - Aston Martin Rally Speedhunters by Paddy McGrath-5

Starting with an ex-GT4 race car, the V8 Vantage was stripped and rebuilt to rally specification. This conversion included uprated Intrax suspension, a custom light pod, underbody shielding and guards, the addition of a hydraulic handbrake, and fitting a spare wheel with basic tool kit in the rear of the car, amongst other changes. The safety devices remained largely the same, with the addition of a second Recaro seat for the navigator, equipped with Schroth harnesses.

What goes up, must come down.

It’s certainly a strange sight on the stage, but a welcome one all the same. If you’re interested in more, you can check out the entire build in photos on MAT’s website here. You can also see the Aston Martin in action, albeit in tarmac specification, in the video above.

Be warned though: other rally cars may sound vastly inferior once you’ve heard this one in action.

Paddy McGrath
Instagram: pmcgphotos
Twitter: pmcgphotos



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Dammmn thats an engine that I can hear all day

Paddy McGrath

It's pretty awesome, although I'm curious as to how much it has been modified.


Wow. This really got me goin'

Paddy McGrath

Imagine the look on my face when it arrived in over that blind jump.

Jordan Butters

IMHO the compression photo should have been the lead image and the title should be 'A Slammed And Cambered Aston Martin With Light Pods'.

Paddy McGrath

After that Polo, I'm not going to mention the 'S' word around here for a while XD


You had me.


Troll-baiting at it's finest!


Bravo Paddy. Excellent pick for a story. Well covered. Damn nice car. Note to all the Stance, slammed and all the other "look at me" car guys - this is the real thing, modifications all done for a purpose. The thing looks good because form follows function.

Paddy McGrath

It also looks good because it's a really expensive supercar.


such a beautiful car and still looks good with rally inspiried cosmetic enchancement

Paddy McGrath

It's the light pod that makes it.

Rotary Nissan

I will say, I find it odd that the custom light pod leaves so much gap between it and the bonnet. Almost looks like it was designed for a Ford Cosworth and not a Vantage.


It looks like the only way to get to the bonnet latches is under the light pod.


Tried to mention that on a reply but I imagine it got deleted/held up due to a link to a youtube vid showing an AM Vantage crashing on a rally at Calder Park in 2012 - should be easy to find.

Paddy McGrath

Correct. You can see that on the link where they've documented the build of the car, too.


absolutely Mind Blowing..... never think that Aston Martin would go on rally

Paddy McGrath

You and me both.


That sounds incredible.


Now I'm eager to see a similar Chiron.

Paddy McGrath

Paging Khyzyl to the comments, Khyzyl Saleem to the comments.


I have, in fact. James Bond film where they wreck the baby Aston as it flew over the crest...

Paddy McGrath

Ah, that was a DBS. Also, not real life XD


That track in the test video reminds me of "Collin Macre Rally" PC game, precisely the version 2.
Usually i see the Aston Martin overrated (the production/road legal car) but this one is amazing, no need to mention the engine roaring.


That sounds amazing! Like a chorus of British lords and ladies wailing and sobbing into their tea cups!


This is great. It's nice to see that the R-GT class is getting some love finally. Hopefully more and more people will enter it over time to make it an exciting class. So far, from what I know it has Porche 911's in it and now this Aston Martin.

Maybe somebody should make a rally spec Lotus Elise to run R-GT. Hmmmm.


Something extremely close to that (the Exige R-GT) was built and homologated, but never raced.


There were 2-3 Fiat 124's running at Monte Carlo, haven't been following things that closely though.

A Mustang or Camaro would be interesting if a bit large/heavy, otherwise the best candidate I can think of is a Nissan 370Z


A GT86 would work nicely. They've been used as Rally cars in Japan for a few years now. The new SF-R might be handy as well, being so small.

MX5 could work too.

Speed hunters should find some drivers who drive MX5s, 370Zs, Mustangs, and GT86s, and put a team together to do Monte Carlo. Document the whole thing. Would probably take a few years of planning to set up, but it would make for an epic story.

alessandro ari zaluski

GT86 run in another class called: R3 it's class for 2wd cars with 2.0n/a or 1.6turbo engine, near all cars(excluded gt86) are FWD


Definitely the GT86! Wasn't Tommi Makkinen building an 86 rally car for Mr Toyoda?

Paddy McGrath

Isn't there an Evora in R-GT? Or did I imagine that?


You sort of imagined it - it was an Exige, but it was only homologated, never raced.


I am not sure. There might be an Evora out there in R-GT class. Hopefully you didn't imagine it because that sounds like a neat car to rally.

Maybe a Speedhunter photographer should hunt one down and get some photographic evidence. haha ;-)

Dave Stansfield

Absolutely fantastic,now let's have a corvette,Ferrari,Porsche Audi,etc made to same spec and put in a World Series not run by FIA.
Bring on the noise and freedom


There are a bunch of Porsches running in R-GT - one of which has been driven by the man pictured in the article (François Delecour). I suspect we won't see the others any time soon.


Aston Martin rally car project video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f2mVjqhKbKY


That's crazy... But glorious


Still looks a little to big to be a rally car.