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More Whispers On Aston-Maybach Team-Up

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On: Fri, Apr 1, 2011 at 4:56PM | By: Chris Weiss

More Whispers On Aston-Maybach Team-Up

Rumors of an Aston Martin-Daimler/Maybach team-up have been surfacing and resurfacing for months. The latest rumor is the most decisive yet, indicating that not only is the Aston-Daimler deal coming, but it's already inked and signed. According to a report from Car and Driver, the deal was actually signed late last year.

Under the agreement, Aston will replace its stretched-to-the-limit 'vertical horizontal' platform with the help of Daimler. Aston needs a larger platform to base its upcoming Lagonda sedan on, and looked outside to find one. Aston found a willing ear in Daimler and will borrow a platform from Mercedes to build the Lagonda on. Aston will also borrow SUV architecture, engines, and possibly a new platform to replace the VH platform that underpins its sports cars.

On the other side of the coin, Aston will build the next Maybach model. Maybach hasn't exactly been a major rival to Bentley and Rolls Royce since its revival in 2002, and Mercedes has considered discontinuing the brand altogether. Instead, it will turn to Aston to help cut production costs and make Maybach more profitable. The next Maybach will be built on the Mercedes S-Class platform, but it will be manufactured in Gaydon. Mercedes estimates that this will cut production costs by 50 percent because Aston is more versed in low-production manufacturing.

In fact, those costs have already started to be cut, as Aston has started building a concept version of the next Maybach. That car will reportedly debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show later this year.

That S-Class/Maybach platform will be the same one that Aston uses to build its Lagonda sedan. Interestingly, that sedan will be going head to head with none other than Maybach.

Aston will also borrow the M/GL-class unibody platform for its own SUV/crossover. That model will feature the Mercedes CL550's 429-hp, twin-turbocharged 4.7-liter V-8 and price in around $250,000.


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