An Aston Martin spokesman has confirmed the brand will be changing the name of its motorsport-derived Vantage GT3 due to a legal dispute with Porsche. First seen at the Geneva Motor Show last month, the new model will now be called the 'Vantage GT12' because Porsche claims it has exclusive rights to the GT3 moniker.
The dispute is claimed to have been dragged out over a few months, and involves Porsche's claim that it exclusively owns the 'GT3' branding when it comes to production road cars (as it has used the name on its hardcore 911 GT3 sports cars). Aston disagrees with this claim, saying the name has "global recognition" as a racing series, in which many brands produce GT3 race cars.Aston's disagreement stems beyond personal feelings, as the spokesman claimed the press or public don't consider GT3 a specific brand name "as they, like us, use 'GT3' to describe the origins and characteristics of certain types of car". It's a questionable move from Porsche as Bentley, another VW-Group subsidiary, has a GT3-branded version of its Continental GT on sale.
Despite the disagreement between the two firms, Aston refuses to get involved in a legal fracas that could cost time and money, and "would prefer to focus our energy and investment on the car and on making sure our customers receive the best possible Aston Martin".To avoid the issue, the track-biased new Vantage GT3 will now adopt the 'GT12' moniker instead, which itself "captures the spirit of GT racing in all its forms and, of course, nods to the V12 engine". In the spirit of long-standing British humour and one-upmanship, GT'12' could also be seen to have a subtle dig at Porsche, as of course one + two does equal three