Saturday, 9:05pm | It’s often said that New York City is one of the world’s worst places to own a car. Between the raging cabbies, soaring parking prices and tousled roads the conditions are enough to beleaguer even the most steadfast owner. Even worse, the past few weeks in New York have been a seasonal watershed, literally. A non-stop mix of deluges and storms (and tremors) marking the end of summer have made even simple things like, say, walking, a total chore. So, you can imagine our quandary when Aston Martin offered us a track-ready, fresh off the boat, Aston Martin Vantage S ($140,000). But who are we to pass up a chance to roar around in Bond’s very own?

Our (rainy) photo essay continues after the jump.

As you’d expect from any 4 wheeled lux-otic specimen, the Vantage S is an instant prom queen. It trumps street conversations with its bellowing exhaust, steals men’s gazes away from high-heeled women and women’s from well-heeled men, and takes home perhaps its coolest kudo: the squeals and points of delighted children. Ours, clad in a stunning Cobalt Blue, indubitably confused them for some kind of real-life Hot Wheel or Transformer — as it did me.

Beneath, a 4.7 liter V8 spurts out gobs of power. 430 horsepower and 361 lb-ft of torque to be exact. Figures and performance aside, one of the Aston’s greatest offerings is its sonics. Not from its Bang & Olufson sound system, which is equally amazing, but its exhaust, which is tuned with such beauty and aggressiveness that we’re pretty certain the engineers set out to warn the streets of Stuttgart and Maranello of its arrival… from the UK.

It trumps street conversations with its bellowing exhaust, steals men’s gazes away from high-heeled women and women’s from well-heeled men, and takes home perhaps its coolest kudo: the squeals and points of delighted children

The Vantage S is a hand-crafted achievement, evident in its sculpted bodywork, interior and chassis. It is a track-ready monster — just look at its carbon fiber treatments and suspension — and offers up a ride that can be broadly described as concrete, but guess what? That’s exactly what it’s supposed to be.

In some circles, the Aston Martin Vantage S is often considered an underrated performance sports car – the car’s well-balanced mix of poise and performance are better understood and appreciated over time. A simple “S” moniker can mean very little these days, but on the Vantage S it’s entirely transformative. No longer a Beverly Hills carriage, but an incredibly balanced, track-cleaving car that’s confident, goes like hell and achingly beautiful, the Vantage S is the car you drive home from work by way of the track. Yes, even in New York.

Photos by EY

Aston Martin Vantage S Photo Essay

For web readers, check out the embedded flickr slideshow at the end of the post for some high-resolution, full-screen goodness.

Slideshow

2011 Aston Martin Vantage S

Price: $138,000, coupe; $151,000, roadster
Layout: two-passenger, front mid-engine
Engine: 4.7L, 430 hp, 361-lb-ft V8
Transmission: Rear-mount seven-speed, single-clutch auto-shift transmission
0-60 mph: 4.6 sec, 189 mph top speed
Fuel Economy: 14/21 mpg

More Info

Photo Essay Data

Canon 7D, V.I.O. POV.HD Camera, Canon 85mm L, Canon 60mm EF-S Macro, Tokina 11-16mm DX, Hoya Radial Filter, Hoya Polarizing Filter