When, in early 2016, Red Bull Racing and Aston Martin first revealed that the two companies were to collaborate on a game-changing hypercar, perhaps the most hotly anticipated variant of the F1 team's Chief Technical Officer Adrian Newey's spectacular vision was the no-holds-barred track-only edition. That ultra-extreme machine, the Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro can now be revealed.
Freed from the constraints and considerations of road use, the Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro is the ultimate expression of power and performance. It's also a supremely rare beast, with just 25 cars being built for delivery in 2020 and with every example already sold.
The most obvious differences to the road-going Valkyrie are in the exterior bodywork. All the aerodynamic surfaces have been revised in the pursuit of significant gains in downforce, including the addition of much larger front and rear wing elements, together with revised active aerodynamic control strategies tailored for the demands of track driving.
Although they're keeping the figures close to their chests for the moment, the Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro's naturally-aspirated 6.5-litre Cosworth-built V12 engine will develop even more power and torque thanks to a significant recalibration and the removal of the road car's emission control systems. The output of the Rimac Energy Recovery System remains unchanged, though its control systems will be re-programmed.
The AMR Pro will feature smaller diameter wheels than the road version (18in front and rear) in order to allow the car to run with Michelin racing tyres made to the same specification as those used by LMP1 cars in the WEC.
The AMR Pro also features Formula 1 inspired carbon-carbon brakes to cope with the huge forces the Valkyrie is capable of unleashing.
In keeping with its racing DNA, the Valkyrie's performance has been enhanced by stripping away any unnecessary weight. Out go items such as the road car's heater/de-mister blower and infotainment screens, and in come lighter track-specific elements such as a polycarbonate windscreen (with heater elements) and side windows, a lighter construction of carbon fibre for bodywork, new suspension uprights and carbon fibre wishbones, plus moulded race seats. The AMR Pro's exhaust system will also be lighter, as on track there's no need to silence that incredible V12 powerplant.
The result of this unprecedented pursuit of performance is a genuinely mind-blowing car with a predicted top speed of close to 250mph, the ability to sustain cornering forces in excess of 3.3g and braking deceleration of more than 3.5g.
However, most impressively, extensive simulations conducted by Red Bull Technology suggest that the Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro will be capable of achieving performance to rival that of a contemporary F1 or LMP1 car - pace previously unthinkable in a car derived from a fully homologated road car.
In order to help cope with the extreme level of performance on offer, owners of the Valkyrie AMR Pro will have access to the same training facilities as Aston Martin Red Bull Racing's F1 drivers. This includes time in the simulator and professional on-track tuition, plus programmes to improve physical fitness. They will then have the opportunity to enjoy their cars to the full with a series of dedicated track events held at some of the world's most prestigious circuits.
"While it is endowed with extraordinary performance, it has always been vitally important to me that the Valkyrie functions well as a true road car, and that naturally comes with some constraints," said Adrian Newey. "However, with the track-only Valkyrie AMR Pro we have the freedom to create an extreme evolution that makes no such concessions. While the core elements of the road and track versions are shared, every aspect of the AMR Pro - aerodynamics, chassis, powertrain and weight - has been optimised to significantly extend the performance envelope. It offers a level of track performance significantly beyond any previous two seat closed roof car."
"Valkyrie has always been about pushing the limits and redefining the possible," added Dr Andy Palmer, Aston Martin Chief Executive Officer. "The road car will set new benchmarks for performance, engineering and technology - a hypercar in the truest sense - and with the track-only Valkyrie AMR Pro those limits will be pushed further still. It's a remarkable project. One that's propelling Aston Martin and 25 of our most passionate customers into a new and extraordinary realm."