Aston Martin execs blame themselves for this problem.
Aston Martin will recall 1,658 examples of the Vantage globally because a flaw resulting from a transmission software update. The affected models have production dates from June 2010 through September 2013 and have the Sportshift I or Sportshift II automated manual transmissions.
Chinese owners first reported their cars stalling or losing power in 2014, including loss of power assist for the steering and brakes. Aston Martin sent engineers to the country in May to evaluate the issue. They found that some dealers didn't reset the clutch position following the software update for the gearbox. After installing the new code, dealers were supposed to show the computer the proper engagement position for the clutch, but some technicians didn't do this.
"Normally recalls start in America. I don't think it is the only example, but it's interesting that it started from China and becomes a global recall," Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer told Reuters as cited by Automotive News Europe. "It demonstrates the importance of China, the sophistication of the customer and the diligence of the authorities there."
Aston Martin execs are partially blaming themselves for this problem. "Basically, we should have explicitly said within the service action for the software that we should re-teach the clutch," Palmer said. "We didn't explicitly say that. Therefore, we take responsibility for fixing it." An anonymous source told Reuters that the campaign could cost the automaker an estimated 300,000 pounds ($380,000 at current exchange rates).
The British sports car maker last had a major recall with links to China in 2014. Aston Martin had to repair 75 percent of the vehicles it had produced since 2007, which totaled 17,590 cars, because a Chinese sub-supplier used counterfeit plastic for a component supplied to the automaker. The issue resulted in 22 failed parts but no accidents or injuries.
Source: Automotive News Europe