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Car and Driver: Vulcan Salute: British Company to Offer Road Conversion for Aston’s Track Special


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AM-Vulcan-7-e1461164493477-626x383.jpgIt seems that the world’s squillionaires don’t know the meaning of the phrase “track-only.” Or if they do, they seem willing to invest huge sums of money into making it go away.

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That’s the rationale behind the decision by British engineering company RML to offer conversions for turning the Aston Martin Vulcan into a street-legal machine, at least in parts of the world with less-stringent approval regulations. This car was, of course, the closed-course special that Aston introduced last year with the explicit proviso that it wasn’t destined for the road. Most illogical, as another famous Vulcan might have put it.

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Owners first expressed interest in such a conversion last summer, but Aston shot down the possibility at that time. Now the automaker has reversed its stance, with Autocar reporting that company boss Andy Palmer has apparently signed off on letting RML offer the conversion. When we visited Aston’s Q-division skunkworks earlier this year we saw the final two Vulcans finished in unliveried white, as, we were told, their owners had not yet chosen what colors to paint them. The Autocar story suggests there was another factor in the delay, quoting Palmer as saying, “We have the sales of the last two cars currently under negotiation and it looks like the road conversion could be the closer on those deals.”

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Even if you’re sitting with a Vulcan in your garage, don’t get too excited. The roadification will only be for territories like the U.K. where it is possible to gain type approval for a single vehicle; we doubt any U.S. owner is going to be prepared to front the enormous costs of federal approval here (and the need to persuade Aston to produce several other cars for crash testing). There’s no confirmation on which modifications will be necessary, but we believe the Vulcan’s race-derived engine does without exhaust catalysts and the car doesn’t have a road-spec lighting system.

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RML is a company with a long history of involvement in similar projects, and it was behind the wild, GT-R–powered Nissan Juke-R and Infiniti Q50 Eau Rouge concept. There’s no word on prices, but don’t expect the modifications to be cheap. Palmer is quoted as saying he thinks that four or five cars might end up being converted.

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