Mount Panorama is the star attraction as Aston Martin winds up for Le Mans 2020 and then Formula One in 2021.
The iconic Bathurst track is the featured circuit on an all-new Aston racer.
But it’s not what you might think.
The AMR-C01 is a custom-designed and specially-made simulator that is aimed at Aston owners and well-heeled SIM racers.
The price-tag is an eye-watering $100,000. Not that any of the 150 SIMs is likely to make it to Australia.
To demonstrate the design and capability of the AMR-CO1, Aston put together a wide-screen view from the driver’s seat of the SIM – and it features a gaggle of GT3 racers heading into Turn 2 at Mount Panorama.
Looking beyond the Bathurst view, the super-SIM is all top-end stuff, from a carbon-fibre monocoque to electrically-adjustable pedals. The first production model is painted with a similar scheme to the latest GT racers for Le Mans at the weekend, but there are other colour combinations taken from classic Astons.
Aston took the inspiration for the driver’s seat from its upcoming Valkyrie, which is promised to be a road-going hypercar that can match the track performance of a grand prix car. That means a custom-shaped carbon-fibre shell with minimal padding.
But Aston’s chief creative officer Marek Reichman – who embarrassingly once binned an Aston during track laps at Albert Park during the Australian Grand Prix weekend – says he enjoyed the challenge of creating something that was more than an office chair in front of a computer monitor.
“Although the simulator isn’t a car, it is inspired by our racing cars,” says Reichman.
“It needed to exude the same elegance, boasting the same dynamic lines and balance of proportions as any Aston Martin with a racing lineage. I can picture the AMR-C01 in the most beautiful of residences as a sculptural work of art in its own right.”
Work on the design began with a nose that was inspired by classic Astons, and even the overhead view has the shape and sleekness of a racing car.
One of Aston’s factory GT racers, Darren Turner, provided the technology connection for the SIM through his company, Curv Racing Simulators in the UK. Apart from his successes in real-world racing, he has more than 20 years experience in SIMs.
“We’ve created a home simulator with incredible immersion that offers users the opportunity to have a great time racing in the virtual world, from the comfort of their own home,” Turner says.
“Our goal was to create a simulator that provided as much enjoyment in virtual reality as real racing does. Racing cars is a lot of fun and it is great to see that with the growth of Esports racing, more people are now getting involved.”