It's supposed to be a security feature.
Aston Martin is recalling 6,076 vehicles in the United States because the double-locking system doesn't comply with federal rules. The campaign affects the 2009-2015 DB9, 2009-2012 DBS, 2010-2016 Rapide, 2011-2016 V12 Vantage, 2012-2013 V12 Zagato, 2010-2016 V8 Vantage, 2014-2016 Vanquish, and 2012 Virage.
Aston Martin's double-locking system is a security feature, which owners activate, that eliminates the ability to unlock the doors – even from the inside. While you might see the advantage of having so much protection for your expensive sports car, the National Highway Traffic Safety administration doesn't agree. The federal regulations state that a person inside a vehicle must be able to unlock the doors, which prevents someone from being trapped.
Aston Martin tried to reason with NHTSA and avoid this recall. The automaker argues that many of its vehicles have an alarm with interior detection, which would activate if someone were inside. Plus, a trapped person could use the horn to get bystanders' attention. The government safety regulator rejects the company's arguments, though.
Aston Martin will begin the recall on August 1, and dealers will install new software to disable the double locking feature. Like most recalls, there's no mandate that owners must bring in their vehicle. We wonder how many might skip this campaign to retain a system that works as intended.
Gallery: 2011 Aston Martin V12 Vantage U.S. Pricing starts at $179,995
RECALL Subject : Double-Locked Doors cannot be Opened/FMVSS 206
Report Receipt Date: DEC 16, 2015
NHTSA Campaign Number: 15V846000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 6,076
All Products Associated with this Recall
Vehicle Make Model Model Year(s)
ASTON MARTIN DB9 2009-2015
ASTON MARTIN DBS 2009-2012
ASTON MARTIN RAPIDE 2010-2016
ASTON MARTIN V12 VANTAGE COUPE 2011-2016
ASTON MARTIN V12 ZAGATO 2012-2013
ASTON MARTIN V8 VANTAGE 2010-2016
ASTON MARTIN VANQUISH 2014-2016
ASTON MARTIN VIRAGE 2012
Manufacturer: Aston Martin Lagonda of North America
Aston Martin Lagonda of North America (Aston Martin) is recalling certain model year 2010-2015 DB9, 2010-2012 DBS, 2010-2016 V8 Vantage, 2012 Virage, 2010-2016 Rapide, 2014-2016 Vanquish, 2011-2016 V12 Vantage, and 2012-2013 V12 Zagato vehicles. The affected vehicles are equipped with interior door unlocking mechanisms that may not function when the vehicle has been locked from the outside. As such, these vehicles fail to conform to Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) number 206, "Door Locks and Door Retention Components."
If the doors cannot be opened by an occupant from inside the vehicle, they may be trapped inside, increasing their risk of injury.
Aston Martin will notify owners, and dealers will disable the double locking feature by reprogramming the software, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin August 1, 2016. Owners may contact Aston Martin customer service at 1-888-923-9988. Aston Martin's number for this recall is RA-01-0021.
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.