The recent V1.9 update for Assetto Corsa Competizione completely overhauled the driving experience in cars across the board. Not only were amazing new GT3s and tracks introduced, which we dived into at length here, but it also changed the way that every car interacted with the track. In this guide, we’re going to climb under the hood of the fan-favourite Aston Martin GT4, reacquainting ourselves with the car that so many love to drive in GT4 races over at The SimGrid.
Introducing the Aston Martin V8 Vantage GT4
A popular car in both ACC and iRacing, the Aston Martin V8 Vantage GT4 is as loved a car in the real world as it is in the sim. In a class designed for drivers from the grassroots to the top of the factories, this car is adaptable and dependable as you’re starting to get to grips with GT racing.
To see proof of this, you need to look no further than the record books. Aston Martin GT4s have picked up championship wins in British GT, on the European continent, and most recently in America. It’s a proven winning formula.
If you’re not convinced that the Aston Martin is the only GT4 you’ll drive, or if you want to drive in the other classes that ACC has to offer, try out our setup subscription which covers all of the fastest cars in the sim!
The basic car characteristics
The Aston Martin V8 Vantage GT4 is a front-engine, rear-wheel-drive car. Whilst all GT4s are rear-wheel-drive, not all of them are front-engined. What this means is that a large amount of the weight in the car lies in front of or over the front axle. This makes the car less prone to oversteer than if the engine was in the middle of or at the rear of the car, but it also makes it more prone to understeer in comparison.
On top of this, as with the GT4 class of car, it is much more similar to the road car than a GT3 car is. This means that you’ll be less likely to spin as the car doesn’t produce as much aerodynamic grip which needs to be carefully manipulated, and as a result, means that you’ll be looking at how the car steers and handles kerbs all the more.
Convinced that the Aston Martin is the GT4 for you? You can pick up setups for it now as part of our ACC Setup Subscription.
Steering and Cornering
Compared to its rivals from the likes of Porsche and Audi, the Aston Martin tends to understeer more. This is due to it having an engine in the front instead of in the middle or the back of the car, but it does also come with its benefits. It means that the steering is more consistent in the car, and crucially that you can turn in sharply without running the risk of oversteering.
A great feature of the Aston Martin, as is generally the case for the GT4 class of the car, is that it can attack kerbs more aggressively than its GT3 counterpart. However, this advantage is even greater for the V8 Vantage. This is a significant plus point of having the engine towards the front of the car, as mid-engine and especially rear-engine cars can get unsettled by the sudden bumps.
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Aerodynamics and Bodywork
Compared to the GT3s, a GT4 car has far less of the extravagant aerodynamics. This is due to regulations designed to keep the costs down, both in buying and in maintaining the car. What this means is that you are more reliant on mechanical grip in a GT4 compared to a GT3 – in short, the previous section just got even more important!
The Aston Martin is relatively in the middle of the class when it comes to size and aerodynamics. The bigger cars, such as the BMW and the Chevrolet, have larger wings and splitters to compensate and reduce the understeer that the larger size produces. In comparison, the smaller Ginetta and McLaren are very aerodynamic efficient but have to find a delicate balance so that it isn’t prone to understeer.
That’s why the Aston Martin is very good as a middle-of-the-road competitor: because it has the aerodynamics of a larger car with the efficiency of a smaller one.
Want to know how the pros handle it? Check out our YouTube channels, which include live setup sessions as well as hotlaps with our newest setups. We recommend our hotlap of Valencia, featuring the car from this very article on the newest track in the game!
Power Delivery and Braking
A strength of the Aston Martin V8 Vantage GT3, the GT4 is also very consistent and dependable when it comes to power delivery and braking. Difficult to induce understeer on the throttle, and easy to power away thanks to its torque, it is a very forgiving car and therefore it’s an excellent car for beginners.
It’s the same when it comes to braking as well. As with many front-engine cars, you will be carrying out your braking prior to turning into the corner. This is because of the heavy front end of the car, meaning that trail braking isn’t as effective as in mid-engined and rear-engined cars. The V8 Vantage is very stable and consistent, meaning that it won’t throw up any surprises for rookies and veterans of GT racing alike.
If that sounds tricky, it’s not to worry! You can get hints and tips from the pros through our Coaching service, which has helped pros from the sim to the circuit to refine their skills and correct little issues that they didn’t even know that they had!
Whether you’re starting out or well-experienced in GT4 racing, the Aston Martin V8 Vantage GT4 is a fantastic car for you. It’s a car that won’t throw up any surprises, meaning that you can push it to the very limit without running much of a risk of things going wrong. That’s why it’s so loved both inside and outside of the sim, and it’s why it’s a car that we’ve looked at here at Coach Dave Academy.