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Aston Martin has announced pricing for the DB11 Volante drop top, with deliveries set to begin in May 2018.

With a starting price of $398,495 before on-road costs it’s over $30,000 more expensive than the $368,000 V8 DB11 coupe, although it undercuts the $428,032 V12 coupe.

Power in the Volante comes from a 4.0-litre V8 engine making 375kW and 675Nm, put to the rear wheels through an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission.

Of course, a convertible is only as good as its roof. Aston Martin has fitted the Volante with an eight-layer soft top capable of being raised (16 seconds) or lowered (14 seconds) at up to 50km/h, with a 50km/h headwind.

Does that mean it’ll work at 100km/h on a still day? We’re not sure either.

As an Aston Martin, there’s no room for awkward details or ugly roof elements. Given the DB9 Volante was a car defined by its stunning good looks, the DB11 had a lot to live up to.

Speaking at the DB11 Volante’s launch in Melbourne, Marek Reichman, chief creative officer for Aston Martin, was at pains to highlight how low his team managed to make the rear deck.

“If you don’t design the convertible Volante at the same time as the coupe, you end up with a Volante that is compromised,” said Reichman, as he talked a roaming crowd through the DB11 and Vantage.

“You can see the common parts, but also notice how low – when the roof is down – the rear of the car is, because we wanted to maintain that incredibly elegant feeling.

“If you imagine this car with a typical stack height, you get this  bustle-back and it’s not very elegant at all. It was about taking the core of the coupe and making it incredibly elegant car when the top is down.”

Most of the coupe’s distinctive design elements have carried over, including the front-wheel curlicue vents, but there are unique alloy wheels, three soft-top colour options and the option to finish the rear seat backs in wood veneer.

Deliveries begin in May.

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