Aston Martin Recalls Cars with Defective Steering Components

Gaydon Warwick, U.K. – February 7, 2018 – Aston Martin The Americas has recalled more than 1,000 sports cars potentially equipped with defective steering column control module clock springs, according to documentation submitted to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration.

The campaign affects Aston Martin DB11 V8 and V12 coupes produced between June 9, 2016, and Nov. 20, 2017. The British luxury automaker suspects nearly three-quarters of the recalled vehicles contain the defective safety components.

This recall stems from an earlier action initiated by Mercedes-Benz USA in October 2017.

The defect

The affected vehicles involved in the recall may come equipped with steering control module clock springs that are insufficiently grounded and may produce electrostatic discharges capable of inadvertently activating driver-side airbag.

This poses a serious safety hazard to occupants, as the unintentional, sudden deployment of safety features could increase the likelihood of an accident. However, Aston Martin has not received reports connecting the defect to any accidents or injuries.

An alert signaling improper air bag operation may appear prior to deployment.

Timeline of events

In April 2015, Daimler AG, the international automotive conglomerate that owns and operates Mercedes-Benz, received two field reports detailing instances in which owners experience inadvertent air bag deployment.

The company immediately launched an investigation in response. However, the inquiry, which was performed using recovered parts from the vehicles referenced in the original field reports, did not lead to root cause identification. DAG suspended the action as a result.

The organization reopened the investigation in late 2016 after receiving an additional report outlining the an instance of inadvertent air bag deployment.

Investigators found that this vehicle contained a defective steering column, which prompted DAG to launch a more focused inquiry into the matter in January 2017.

In June 2017, the engineers leading this investigation discovered the root cause of the issue: electrostatic discharge emanating from damaged steering column control module clock springs.

In October 2017, DAG contacted Aston Martin to share the results of its investigation, as the British automaker used the same steering column assemblies at the center of the inquiry.

Aston Martin launched its own investigation to assess the potential impact on its DB line, which used the component. In January 2018, the car company’s Recall Committee convened to assess the issue. The group decided to conduct a voluntary safety recall.

Aston Martin notified dealers January 29.

The solution

The automaker has directed dealers to install contact bridges and springs in affected models free of charge, according to an NHTSA recall acknowledgment document. These components should facilitate proper grounding and prevent instances of unintentional air bag deployment.

Aston Martin intends to contact owners via first-class mail March 1 through March 11.

Check your car’s recall status using MotorSafety’s free vehicle lookup tool.

Sean ReyesAston Martin Recalls Cars with Defective Steering Components

Aston Martin recalls sports cars with faulty software

Warwick, U.K. – June 21, 2017 – Aston Martin Lagonda of North America has recalled more than 300 sports cars with faulty software, according to documentation filed with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration.

The campaign affects 2011-2012 Aston Martin V8 Vantage sports cars manufactured between Nov. 25, 2010 and Aug. 16, 2012. The car maker estimates that approximately 2 percent of the vehicles mentioned in the recall contain the defective software.

The defect

Vehicles named in the campaign could be equipped with engine control and transmission software that is incompatible automatic clutch settings. This can cause the transmission to miss gearchanges in some throttle positions.

The clutch can also slip and overheat, prompting the vehicle to switch to clutch protection mode. In this instance, the Malfunction Indicator Light will illuminate and gearchanges will become abrupt.

The defect is detrimental to overall driveability, putting drivers and passengers at risk. However, Aston Martin has not received reports of any collisions or injuries connected to software issue.

Timeline of events

In 2012, Aston Martin released an update for engine control and transmission software in the V8 Vantage.

After installing the updated software, technicians were supposed to delete existing automatic clutch settings and input new configurations to comport with the update. However, this did not happen.

More than five years later, in April 2017, the car manufacturer received multiple reports from V8 Vantage owners who were experiencing driveability issues.

Aston Martin immediately launched an investigation to determine the root cause. Engineering teams were able to replicate the issues in internal tests and quickly discovered the existing automatic clutch settings were incompatible with the updated software.

Aston Martin’s Critical Concerns Review Group recommended the Recall Committee take up the matter June 15, 2017. The group met that same day and decided to conduct a voluntary recall campaign.

Dealers received notification of the action June 23, according to the NHTSA.

The solution

Aston Martin has ordered dealers to reinstall the engine control and transmission software on vehicles named in the recall and configure automatic clutch settings to match the updated systems.

Dealers are also required to replace clutch systems in V8 Vantage models with transmission damage stemming from the incompatibility issue. Technicians are to perform these repairs free of charge. Aston Martin is expected to notify owners between July 7 and Aug. 7.

Check your car’s recall status using MotorSafety’s free vehicle lookup tool.

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Lock Issues Affect Several Aston Martin Recalls

Gaydon Warwick, U.K. — August 08, 2016 — Several Aston Martin vehicles may not meet Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard requirements, according to a recent press release.

The manufacturer will recall 6,076 vehicles with model years ranging from 2010 to 2016 to address ineffective door locks. While the manufacturer’s initial investigations began last year, owners will not be notified until August.

The defect

Using the locks in affected models could accidentally prevent occupants from being able to unlock the car from the inside. This is intended to be a security precaution, but could instead go against FMVSS No. 206, which specifically concerns “door locks and door retention components.”

As much of a risk as this could pose, owners have some resources at their disposal. First of all, the release said that the horns inside would still work, allowing users to warn others and avoid being trapped.

Certain vehicles will also come with an alarm system that sounds off if it detects an occupant.

Finally, the company explained its remedy in a Part 573 Safety Recall Report submitted to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration last month.

This source said that reprogramming the system software in the affected vehicles will disable the double locking mechanism and fixed the problem. Most of the cars targeted in this recall (5,845 exactly) are said to be with customers, while 231 remain with the dealers.

Timeline of events

The report listed the owner notification date as July 1 and the owner notification period as the days between August 1 and 15. The assertions of noncompliance date back to a recall meeting on December 11, 2015.

In 2014, Reuters reported on a 17,590-Aston Martin recall because some parts contained counterfeit plastic. Around three quarters of the right-hand drive models built since May 2012 were affected, as well as left-hand drive vehicles dating back to 2007.

Check your car’s recall status using MotorSafety’s free vehicle lookup tool.

adminLock Issues Affect Several Aston Martin Recalls