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ASTON MARTIN VANTAGE V8 "LEMON"

cheekymonkeycheekymonkey Posts: 19
edited December 2013 in Aston Martin
BOUGHT A 2007 VANTAGE V8 NEW, IN NOV. 2006 FOR ABOUT $125,000, FROM THE COLLECTION, CORAL GABLES, FL. LONG LIST OF DIFFERENT PROBLEMS WITH ONE MAJOR PROBLEM FROM NEW. THE CAR DOESN'T START AND WHEN IT DOES IT STALLS OR RUN ROUGH DURING WARM UP, RPM'S AT AROUN 400, SOUNDS LIKE A MILITARY TANK FIRING ON TWO CYLINDERS. DEFINATELY A 'LEMON'. BEEN IN WORKSHOP 3 TIMES, 21 DAYS OUT OF USE, HAD FINAL REPAIR ATTEMPT BY ASTON MARTIN. CLAIM FILED WITH FLORIDA LEMON LAW DEPT. FULL REFUND REQUIRED. LIST OF PROBLEMS INCLUDED: CAR ALARM GOING OFF; SEAT RATTLES; STEERING WHEEL RATTLES; NAV SCREEN RATTLES, BRAKES SQUEEL; HANDBRAKE STICKING; OIL PRESSURE RELIEF VALVE DEFECTIVE (VERY NOISY) ASTON MARTIN KNOWS OF THIS DEFECT WITH THIS PART ON VANTAGE'S BUT HAS NO FIX YET.

CAN I RECOMMEND THIS CAR? NO, I AM SORRY TO SAY. TOO MANY PROBLEMS AND ONE MAJOR PROBLEM THAT ASTON MARTIN HAS NOT BEEN ABLE TO FIX. SPENDING $125,000 ON A CAR THAT DOESN'T START IS AN ABSOLUTE JOKE. HAVING ASTON MARTIN TRY AND FIX THE PROBLEM 4 TIMES WITHOUT SUCESS, IS EVEN MORE OF A JOKE. MY ADVICE, FROM MY EXPERIENCES, I CANNOT RECOMMEND ANYONE BUYING THIS VEHICLE. CUSTOMER SERVICE AT ASTON MARTIN HEADQUARTERS IN NEW JERSEY, THEIR RESPONSE WAS ........ SILENCE. THEY HAVE NOT BOTHERED TO RESPOND OR MAKE ANY COMMENT...... GO FIGURE.

A VERY SAD FIRST TIME AM OWNER.

PEOPLE OFTEN THINK SPENDING BIG MONEY ON A FANCY SPORTS CAR OR LUXURY SUV MEANS THAT THEY WILL GET A FIRST CLASS VEHICLE. FROM EXPERIENCE I HAVE FOUND THE MORE YOU SPEND THE MORE PROBLEMS YOU GET AND THE WORSE THE CUSTOMER SERVICE.
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Comments

  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    Did you get your "full refund"?

    Sorry to hear about your problems. Makes me want to go out and hug my 911S that has 12,400 virtual trouble free miles on it. I'd have blown a gasket if I went through what you have.
  • Waiting for A/M to find me an exact new replacement (more difficult than it may sound due to lack of availability). If they can't supply one within a reasonable timeframe then a full refund will be in order.
  • Issue now resolved. Aston Martin senior management have been in touch and professionally and promptly arranged for a new relacement vehicle which has now been delivered. New car appears to be perfect. Hopefully I will have no serious problems with this new one :)
  • bocatripbocatrip Posts: 194
    Good luck with your new car. Let us know how youare making out.
  • andrewjnandrewjn Posts: 14
    Always sorry to hear of anyone having that kind of experience with anything ludicrously expensive. But risk of failure increases with complexity, systems redundancy notwithstanding. I've had it with increasingly expensive wristwatches too (incl. one that retails for more than the Aston Vantage, loaded) and the more you spend, the more quirky they are and the pricier to repair, with more expert head-scratching thrown in just to make you feel good.

    I got my red paddle-shift Vantage coupe last Sunday and am bracing myself. So far, with 350 miles, it's a dream. Highway, surface streets, parking on dirt roads to hike... no problem. Something I didn't expect: I need to carry a rag in the driver's door pocket to wipe the nose smudges of the curious off the windows.

    Still have my 2000 Jag XJ8, which needed a new engine at 44,000 miles, a new transmission and gearbox at 50,101 miles (101 mi past the warranty; the dealer split the cost) and which suffered intermitted total electrical blackouts from Day One until 50,000 miles (hey, maybe it was the gearbox). That car, I hope, prepared me for the Aston, which was 3 times the price. I bought the extra 2 years' warranty for $4,500. I never do this with electronics; it's dealer padding and nearly 25% of their profits. With a car, it's 2 extra years of sound sleep.

    I'm in my late 40s and have wanted this car since I was 8, growing up in England. It's been a long wait. At this point... I'd still rather have it than have the money in the bank. Owning a car that has pedestrians running into the street to take pix of it with their cell phones? In L.A.? Come on!

    Ask me in three years though.
  • Cheekymonkey here.....just giving an update on things, with 800 miles, so far so good. Definitely the metallic black is better than the standard jet black as it is easier to clean and doesn't show the polish swirls. A rare car in SW Florida and therefore attracts the photographers and onlookers. However in London AM's are two a penny. Hoping to put the original Vantage problem behind me now and just try and enjoy this new replacement.
  • Well, hopefully the sale of Aston Martin by Ford to David Richards means that, if you have problems, you will be taken more seriously in the future. I have several colleages that, like you, had very poor experience with Jaguar. But, unlike you, their patience was tested beyond repair and the fact that Aston was also owned by Ford was a deal killer.

    I had a chance to drive a Vantage several weeks ago. Although it would never replace my 911 Turbo as a sports car, I can honestly say as a long time BMW owner (currently with 2003 M5) that I would personally consider and recommend it as a sleek and comfortable GT over the ugly, ponderous M6.

    Enjoy your new car and post an occassional update on your experience.
  • andrewjnandrewjn Posts: 14
    I'm at 700 miles - in only 3 weeks. I researched the car pretty closely before buying, and I thought I'd post the things, big or small, good or bad, that have surprised me.

    I thought my visibility would be impeded in traffic by those big rear posts or the raked windshield. Hasn't been the case at all. It's great in traffic.

    The engine "farting" on shifts was a surprise - I'm told by the dealer this will happen during break-in; 2000 mi.

    I'm surprised, with a 6-speed (paddle shift) to get into 6th so quickly (final gear is 0.78:1). I'd have been happy to be doing 65 mph in 5th at 2000 rpm, with a little head-room for sustained mad-speed in 6th. 6th at freeway speed is barely distinguishable from 5th, rev-wise; it's very close-ratio. Maybe the 4.3l li. 380 bhp engine wouldn't have been torque-y enough at high speeds with a taller gearing. Anyway, this (plus the 240 millisecond paddle-shift) makes it extremely comfortable for city driving.

    It's the comfiest car I ever sat in. Don't know why I didn't expect this. My Jag XJ8 feels like an old bench-seat GM 4-door compared.

    Typos in the (gorgeous leather-bound) Owner's Manual! Every "its" has been given an apostrophe, including all the possessives. From a car maker based in England! Some of the plurals (spec's, wheel's) have apostrophes too. Alarming lack of attention to detail.

    The air conditioning kicks into Recycle at relatively high temp requests. The all-black interior may have something to do with that, but I'm still messing with it, trying to find a balance between acceptable int. temp. and sucking in my own carbon dioxide all day.

    Love all the tiny touches, like the windows lowering 3mm when you open the door, and raising again when you close it, to provide an air-tight seal (but see above). The doors that stay open at any angle. The doors raising 12 degrees on opening (how do they do that?) to avoid touching any curbs. The airline-seat-style leather storage pouches that I only after 2 weeks discovered under both seats. The Aston logo on the LCD screen on startup. The huge, heavy, milled-aluminum filler cap. The "vibration ignore" button for when you lock a kid or dog in the car. The little doo-dads that pop out of a hidden tube, spray the headlight cowls and pop back in again. The fact that the car (with a 49/51 balance, due to the far-back engine placement) WEIGHS the trunk contents and dips the headlights accordingly.

    The power-fold mirrors! I fold them in on tight streets, approaching oncoming cars, getting quite a few odd looks.

    The trunk popped open when I took a speed bump too fast yesterday. It didn't raise noticeably, it just warned me politely.

    I'm surprised the gas-tank monitoring cuts off below 20 remaining miles. And that there's no Fuel Used indication. My Jag goes all the way down to "1 mile remaining," but I can call its bluff by reading the digital Fuel Used and subtracting from the 23 gallons it holds. The Aston has a smaller tank, no usage tracking, and after you've dipped below 20 miles remaining, it just gives you a "--". Makes for a little insecurity when the needle's on the pin and your math isn't good enough to divide the mpg indication by the miles-since-fill-up.

    The radio's no good. I don't listen to a lot of radio (the CD and audio system are stellar, with an unexpected subwoofer hidden somewhere), but the Aston, as the dealer admitted later, gets no AM. And that's in L.A, with a thousand stations. And its FM goes out under bridges, which I'd never experienced in a car before. The roof antenna makes no difference.

    Lastly - I didn't expect I'd be waking up before the alarm clock every morning, excited about driving to work.

    Hope the info is helpful for readers who are contemplating a purchase...

    Andrew
  • misniki20misniki20 Posts: 7
    I've had my Vantage since Dec of last year and it has been back to the the dealer 4 times already. This last time, it was there for 4 1/2 and the problem still there. The issue I have is the driver's door speaker constantly cuts in and out. The passenger door will do it too but it's mostly the driver's door. First they said it was a bad speaker and after the was replaced with a new one they said it was the wiring. After that was fine they tried to say it might be the wiring from the amp. Last I was told that the bluetooth was making the speakers cut out even though I don't use it. After it was in the shop for 4 weeks, they said they disconnected the bluetooth. The speakers are still cutting out. The whole time it was in the shop, they claimed they never heard the same problem I heard. I was wondering if anybody else has heard of this problem or experienced it? What should I do now. This is a lot of money to spend on a car and something simple like the speakers don't work.
  • One of the problems I had on my original Vantage was the rear speaker would distort at half volume. In the end they re-programmed the stereo system with different parameters. The sound changed but I can't say it actually fixed the problem as I believed it was the actual speaker that was the problem and not software. 4 weeks of down time for your stereo is substantial. They will always look at the easiest and cheapest methods first, when trouble shooting even though their suspicions maybe something much more time consuming or a expensive part. May be the amplifier which is affecting that channel to that speaker.

    I guess they would have already tried this but...surely if they swap out the wiring at the amp, with your other door speaker, you will see if the problem transfers over to the other door. If it does, then you know it is not the speaker or the wiring but in fact the amplifier. Easy for their tech to do and within a week you would know and then they can get you a new amp.

    By the way, which dealership are you taking it to?

    If you have had your vehicle out of use for over 14 days and in for the same problem at least 3 times then you may want to put the manufacturer 'on notice' by filing your lemon law form to their HQ and to your state lemon law office. One on notice they get one final attempt to do a repair.
  • misniki20misniki20 Posts: 7
    I take it to Aston Martin of Beverly Hills which is about 45 mins from my house. It's such an inconvenience to have somebody drop me off and turn around and take me back in two days because they have "fixed" the problem. When it was in the shop for 4 weeks they had it towed it but I had to call my salesperson and complain and she took care of it for me. I've done the lemon law before on a 2004 6 series by calling an lemon law attorney. Should I call the attorney or just contact the manufacturer first. How do I contact them? What department should I ask for? Thanks for all your info and advice.
  • kevwadkevwad Posts: 1
    Contact AM direct, go via the website at www.astonmartin.com and follow the contact us link, they reply quite quickly.
    I had major issue's with my first car and got it changed by refusing to take it back from the dealer after it had been there for 33 days out of the 45 I had owned it. 2nd car great, take it to diiferent race tracks each month and it's brillant.
  • I agree, you should contact AM in California which is where their HQ is based. Speak to someone in senior management (I have some names and numbers) and no doubt they will be keen to address your issues. Once I was in contact with them, things got moving quickly and they did their best to help. Often, just whining at the dealership gets nowhere at all. Good luck with that, and hopefully soon you will have your stereo all fixed up.
  • misniki20misniki20 Posts: 7
    Thanks for the info. I'll post what happens when the situation gets resolved.
  • OK, so here is the update on the new Vantage (the one that replaced the 'lemon' :lemon: from a few months back). After just 1000 miles I can report that exactly the same problems are happening with this new one. That is to say it struggles to start up properly in the morning. It has done this several times in the past 10 weeks and is progressively getting worse. It will start but barely idle at 400rpm and no response to the gas pedal until at least 8-10 seconds. Absolutely no different a problem that the previous Vantage which AM was unable to fix and unable to diagnose as to what the problem was. Has been into dealer once, no fix, just a quick ECM re-flash. This week will go back to dealer again. Is this 'dejavue' or what?

    Apart from this problem, no other problems to report. But so far, only 1000 miles covered.

    Lets see how round 2 plays out. Surely not another lemon :confuse:
  • You have to have the worst luck in the world!!! I hope that works out. You can't go for the same car three times. I spoke with a lemon law attorney and he said my case would be a very difficult one to fight since it is just the speaker. I took the car to service dept when the speaker was cutting in and out so they could here it and they said they wanted to try to replace the amp but I haven't heard anything from the yet. I believe it has been about two weeks since I took it up there. I should call them but I don't even want to bother with it now.
  • I am thinking about purchasing a 2006 vantage, so that depreciation won't hit me as hard, but I have noticed that there have been numerous and viable complaints pertaining to this car. As good as it looks, is it worth it to purchase this car in your opinion. I am looking at a Jag XJ8, and although there are styling similarities the A/M just looks so much better. I have a Jag right now and have had no problems.
  • I noticed that you seemed to like your Vantage, but something that concerned me was the fact that things can be problematic for a car like this. One of the complaints I noticed from another user was that some of the materials in his/her car rattled incessantly, while the car was less than a year old. Clearly you have not had these problems, which may be more a product of hand made craftsmanship rather than anything else. Could you tell me if this is a car that is going to be taken into the shop a lot and warning signs I should look for in potential Vantage's before purchasing.
  • I noticed that you were not particularly happy with the service you recieved at the Aston Martin Dealership in Beverly Hills. Considering that I am about a 45 minute drive from there, and if I purchase an Aston Martin I would probably take the car to that dealership for scheduled maintance. Considering the fact that you have not good experience with the dealership, is it even worth it to consider this car if I have to drive all the way to orange county or further to get it serviced, and the other question I had for you was how much is the bill for an oil change. If you have any suggestions I would be happy to hear from you since you seem relatively experienced in this area.
  • I have an 07 Vantage with the useless sportshift. I don't know who reads this, but it's had nothing but problems. Rear-end issues, misc squeaking, leaking, etc.

    One thing everyone fails to understand here is that this car has absolutely NO POWER. If you are just buying it for the looks, it’s a great car; and the handling is amazing as well.

    When it comes to power, this car lacks the BALLS that it should have. May look cool riding down the street, but when you need the power, it’s simply not available. 380HP is on family station wagons these days. 1st gear and 2nd gear should not feel like 2 gears apart. Shifting hard should not be as jerky as it is.

    Some of the complaints I have submitted have come back with “no trouble found” intake backfire popping is claimed to be normal, the paddle shifter car in auto mode is “not supposed to shift when you need it to shift”. Give me an f’n break.

    For $145K I expect more in a car. Whoever is thinking of buying one, think twice. If you go on a test drive, push the car to its limits. When you talk to the main management group and you hear “get an attorney”, that's bad news.
  • although I don't expect to drive this car at its limits, it sounds to me like there are a lot of minor problems which add up, which is a little dissappointing considering that I will spend a significant amount of money on this car. I have a Jag right now and have had no problems, and I like the xk's styling and I assume reliability is going to be pretty good, but I am a little dissappointed that the Vantage seems to be more of a headache to most than a joy.
  • andrewjnandrewjn Posts: 14
    I have a 2000 Jag XJ8 and the 07 Aston Vantage. The Jag has had intermittent trouble since day 1. Total electrical blackouts, undiagnosed (in the shop for it 4 times; "unable to reproduce," and when they were able to reproduce it, they couldn't start it either) -- new engine at 40,000 miles (they broke the timing chain during regular service), new transmission and gearbox at 50,000 (they broke it during a regular service, 100 miles over warranty). I still get warning lights coming on, loss of ABS, etc, "limp home mode" taking over, at 79,000 miles... And in L.A. I often stop at a light and there's a Jag in front of me and behind me and one on each side.

    In the other hand the Vantage has been great, quiet, sufficiently powerful for me and fast, in its first 2 months. I did 300 miles last Saturday afternoon, hitting good speeds often (including breezing past an oblivious cop at 120+) and it was a delight in motion and a crowd-pleaser at rest. More comfortable seats than the Jag, and about the same gas mileage, despite being 500 pounds lighter and 20 inches shorter. The trunk has been fine for guitars and amps and large luggage, and passengers get out giddy.

    The backfiring is still happening on low-speed shifts; 3 or 4 times a day. The AM radio receives no signal, and some FM stations which I get okay in the Jag are intermittent. Those are my complaints. Oh, and a piece of window trim on the driver's door is sneaking up. And the CD player ejects too slowly.

    It doesn't have the power of a Carrera, or of the new Audi R8. But I averaged 5 mph coming home on the freeway tonight in L.A. -- I didn't get out of 1st gear for 3 miles. I don't need 420 bhp and 2 less miles per gallon so I can accelerate up to the red lights in front of me.

    This was a big purchase for me and maybe in a few thousand miles I'll feel differently. But so far it's the best thing I've done for myself in years. (No need for L.A. buyers to go to Orange County. Sales and Service at Galpin - the 405 and Roscoe - has been great.
  • do you think the electrical problems such as speaker problems are a fluke. How much sun is your car exposed to I have an 06 Jag xj8 l and reliability has been on par of japanese models in other words no problems. I would assume that the 07 XK8 would be similar in terms of reliability, its just although the new XK looks good the Vantage, makes it look plain. Is the backfiring just because the car is new? i looked at the message board and it seems like you are the only one who has an Aston Marting Vantage that hasn't had serious problems. Statistically, it would seem that I would likely end up with a car with a lot of problems. I would welcome anything that could counter this last statement.
  • I don't know if I've had bad service with this dealership because they can't fix the issue I'm having or if all their service is bad. After so many trips to Beverly Hills they finally started towing my Vantage in. Towing is a service they offer at your expense of I believe $60 each way (depending on miles). If you do get one and it doesn't have any issues, you're only supposed to have to get service once a year. I think the once a year service for the car was $1000. I might actually be closer to the Santa Ana dealership but since I started in Beverly Hills with my complaints, I figured I should keep it all in one place.
  • I have an 07 Vantage also I thought it just that my expectations for the car were to high. I felt that it could be quicker. I agree with you about the handling but I feel my 6 series BMW gets up quicker. It's also a lot smoother than the Aston. We were able to take it out on the speedway with the professional drivers from Aston Martin and I was impressed with what the car could do but when can you do all that on the freeway without be taking to jail for reckless driving. I haven't had any backfiring problems but my emissions system service light came on I believe three time in the 9 months I've had the car. The only way to clear it is to take it in to the dealership. I love the car but for the price and for what it is, it could've been better. I wish my lease was 2 years instead of 3.
  • 1) It sounds like stay away from the Beverly Hills service dept, judging from your experience it does not sound particularly helpful or effective.
    2) I noticed you had some electrical problems with your car, is this something that should be expected on this model?
    3) judging from what other people have said in this forum it seems to me that only 1 person has had 0 problems with their car. Do you think that the statistics are so stacked against getting an A/M that works perfectly I should expect to have problems with this car. Are these problems that are going to take away the enjoyment of owning this car?
    4) do you have any suggestions?
  • what type of leaking problems are you having? According to another owner the backfiring is normal for up to a certain period of time. The same owner said that some of the rubber insulation pieces have started to come loose, I wanted to know if you have experienced something similar. In terms of reliability, do you mind giving me a detailed list of the problems you have encountered?
  • The guys at the B.H. AM repair dept are really nice people. I think they are just forced to follow the rules they were given.

    In my opinion, AM knows this car is messed up. They are just trying to cover themselves. I wish there was a way to get everyone together so that this could go to the next level.

    More people with similar problems must be important.
  • Is it normal for the car to backfire when it is new and when does it stop?
  • I understand your position on the Porsche 911 model. The two things I didn't like were its incredibly stiff suspension, and the fact that styling hasn't really had any major styling changes except perhaps from the 993 to the 996 models, 996 models and 997 models look very similar althought there are subtle differences. This probably helps the car maintain its value, but living in CA the Porsche almost looks normal, and for $90,000 and up I expect to pay for something that looks different. It would help me tremendously if you could give me specific problems you had with your car, to help me in my decision making process.
  • I haven't had major issues that stop me from driving. It is pretty annoying when your stereo doesn't work right. I love the car but I'm not attached to it. I spoke with a lemon law attorney again this morning and if the car goes back, I wouldn't get another. It's kind of like been there, done that move on to the next. The only thing I can suggest is maybe waiting on an 08 model. Maybe some more kinks would be worked out.
  • Well I don't think waiting for an 08 is going to make any difference as I doubt no changes or at least no major changes will be made. If you problems remain unresolved you need to contact AM H.Q. and speak with Scott or Richard. For only stereo problems, the car isn't a lemon but it will sure be frustrating and annoying. If it just can't be fixed then a complete new stereo system should be installed. These systems aren't cheap but that's not your concern, you just want it working right, which shouldn't become such a major problem. Keep up the pressure and makes some calls to AM H.Q. in CA.
  • i read that the changes will be in '09 or '10 with an added 100 hp on almost all models. this car deserves to run on both gonads, not just 1. Even the new DBS is only 510HP. these days 550-600 should be an avg HP rating for a high-end sports car, no? maybe i'm wrong.

    anyone with paddles have trouble down-shifting quick enough? doesn't the 0-60 feel like more than 5 seconds? Also, do you have the number for the AM HQ in CA?

    I must admit, the car is pretty fun to drive and there are only a few of us out there.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I think you are a little off on your 911 assessment.

    I have a 2005 911S (997) and a business associate has a 2007 AM V8 that he took delivery of in April. He has had his car back to the dealer no less than 5 times in barely 5 months for both minor and significant issues. Resolution of problems has been marginal at best and he is considering "getting an attorney". I just turned 16,000 miles on my car (22 months) and had my first warranty repair on the convertible top yesterday. They detailed the car before giving it back to me.

    Granted, the Aston is a more exclusive car, but that exclusivity appears to come at a significant price of relaibility and performance. With my 911's (standard) adjustable suspension set at "normal" it is nearly as compliant and comfortable as the Aston. And, even though it is only rated at 355 hprsepower, the acceleration compared to the heavier Aston is far superior. The changes going from the 996 to 997 were signifcant (including the aforementioned adjustable suspension and 3.8 liter "S" model). True, it retains the ubiquitous 911 styling, but my friend's AM has been complimented occasionally as "nice Jag".

    I'm not promoting Porsche over Aston - they are very different cars. But for $95,000, I have a world class sports car I can use every day (and have) without fear of breakdown. If I was prepared to have a weekend garage queen, I'd have dished out $180k for a F430 and at least had a car that is really exclusive and appreciated while I sat looking at it.

    I hope for AM owner's here that the new ownership group is more responsive to issues. My friend is pretty pissed at his "Ford like" experience, so far.
  • 100% agreed on the 997 comment and on the f430 comment.

    we all got screwed. we all got screwed. we all got screwed.

    the only reason there are a few of us here is that other guys with the vantage problems don't have access to this forum.

    i already got my attorney. there should be a class action here. we all got screwed, big time.
  • After reading what you wrote, I fail to see where you and I differ. Numerous members in this forum agree with your statements about the AM and since I don't own one, but was merely interested in what others had to say, it appears that your statements are in concurrence with the rest of the groups. I think what I was trying to say was, yes the 997 has changed, mechanically, but in terms of styling one has to look closely to notice significant details. However, I understand Porsche's position, in not wanting to alienate its broad base of consumers. I completely agree with your statement about a world class sports car as the Ferrari F430, looks great. For those who would prefer a quater of million in realestate rather than in a car the F430, is in my mind the best looking two seater sports car.

    Right now the AM Vantage is a little overpriced simply do to demand. However, in another year I expect it to come down to around 110K. In the ballpark of a 911. Yes I think reliability weighs more heavily for a car at this price, but for those willing to spend slightly over 100K the AM vantage looks the best.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    Here's where we differ (from your previous post):

    I understand your position on the Porsche 911 model. The two things I didn't like were its incredibly stiff suspension, and the fact that styling hasn't really had any major styling changes except perhaps from the 993 to the 996 models, 996 models and 997 models look very similar althought there are subtle differences.

    First, the 997 "S" models have PASM, an adjustable active suspension, standard. It can be added as an option on the base models. While the "sport" setting is suitable for a track, the "normal" setting is definitely not "incredibly stiff" as you indicate. Even with the standard 19" wheels, the normal setting handles road imperfections without much more drama than my Acura TL. Never once had a complaint form my wife or daughters as passengers. A friend had a 996 Turbo and it was painful by comparison with no ability to adjust the settings.

    Second, on the exterior styling changes, the 997 is, to my eye, a much more atractive exterior, going back to the wide body and oval headlights of the 993 model. The 996, with it's narrow rear and funky headlights, is the ugly duckling by comparison. As far as the interior goes, the 997 is a major advancement. Certainly not the lap of burled wood luxury of the GT oriented Aston Martin, but a significant improvement over previous 911 models and more appropriate, IMO, for a sports car.

    Again, don't misunderstand, I'm not propmoting Porsche over AM or anything else. It just sounded to me that you perhaps had a one generation old impression of the 911, which, frankly, I wouldn't have bought myself, either.

    Good luck, whatever you decide.
  • Hi everyone, Cheekymonkey here (the starter of this thread (well 'non-starter' was what it was all originally about!!!)

    Anyway....
    Here is an update on Vantage #2.
    It was back at the dealership a couple of weeks ago where they had it for a few days. I was told that the cold start program needed reprogramming and the data was sent over to Britain for their HQ to deal with. Since I got the car back, so far no further problems with the cold start (although it is early days yet and I'm not holding my breath) but, so far so good. I just hope they fixed it finally this time. The techs down at AM in Naples, FL, were very helpful and very friendly. Certainly more professional than those down at The Collection in Coral Gables, FL.

    Other than that I have no further problems to report. The car goes like a pocket rocket and looks the bizzz. I am finding the met black a lot easier to keep clean and easy to polish out any fine scratches or haze (unlike the non-met black Vantage I had previously).

    Now, this thread wasn't set up for a fight between Vantage and 911 owners. Sure, many of us Vantage owners may have considered the 911 as it is around the same price and sure, its a great car. However, they are two a penny and who hasn't already had one or knows someone who has one or someone in the street has one.... they are just too common. Now your average AM owner isn't interested in the common stuff as I am sure market surveys already know. Your Vantage owner is someone who seeks to be a little different from the rest of the crowd. The Vantage is something different in its looks and styling. So there you go. We can all bicker over the specs of 911's against the Vantage all day long. We know whats black and what is white.

    Finally, I think some of those 911 owners, if they were really honest, and could scrape up the extra cash, they would of chosen the Vantage over the 911, regardless.

    Now, as for F430's do you know how much those beasts cost to service? $$$!

    Yes, I do have some AM management contact numbers if anyone here needs them. Sorry, can't print them in this thread.
  • Well, I have to say, that interesting perspective pulled me off the sidelines and forced a response.

    I too, happen to be a 911 owner (2007 Turbo). And, not to play [non-permissible content removed] for tat, but I think I could have "scraped up the extra cash" to buy an entry level AM V8. I am a partner with a private equity group that briefly negotiated to buy the entire company from Ford's PAG. We elected not to proceed, but I did go so far as to post a $40 million personal LC to show seriousness.

    I get a humorous kick out of those who look at a $100k+ car as a way to distinguish themselves as "someone who seeks to be a little different from the rest of the crowd". And then proceed to get into lemon law buybacks and are afraid to "hold their breath" on the second car. Who are you fooling here? You have the time and patience for this crap? It's not like you are getting a vintage Ferrari that will appreciate, you are buying a new Ford for heaven's sake. The frequency of problems with the AM V8 was one of the things that put a black mark on the company during our due diligence.

    And, buy the way, an F430 isn't that expensive to service. A hell of a lot less than my time would be worth having to go through a lemon law buyback. Maybe you should consider one when you can scrape together a little extra cash.
  • Well everyone, from that kind or response, its clear to say it doesn't take much to upset a 991 owner these days!

    It seems I hit a little raw nerve there !!!

    Maybe its because when they driving around in their 911 or leave it in a parking lot, nobody takes a blind bit of notice where as the Vantage will attract a small crowd.

    What's with 911 owners viewing this thread anyway? I don't go viewing the 911 threads because its of no interest to me.

    B.T.W. the lemon buy back was nice and easy, no attorney required and a new, higher value/higher spec replacement provided within 5 days, at no cost to me. Transistion was simple and easy.

    Finally, no, I couldn't quite stretch right now to a 430. I am happy with my FORD 'Vantage' and with a total of 3 exotic vehicles in the house (one for me, one for my wife and one shared by my sons) I think $400k spent in one year on autos is enough. But thanks for your opinion anyway!
  • I had the same problem with my V8V. The problem was with the engine control unit. The dealer did a reprogramming and the problem was fixed. They speculated that the reason for the ECU going haywire was all the short trips that I was doing in the car (office is one mile from home).
  • which problem, backfire ?
  • Is the problem the car or the driver. Sure, the AM lacks in low rpm torque, that means that to get it to perform you have to keep the revs up. If you want to drag race, buy a corvette.

    I took the AM performance driving course at the Ford Michigan Proving Grounds in a Vantage and have had my Vantage out to the track for several "driver's schools." I assure you that the car performs very well on a road course in the hands of a skilled driver.
  • "Even the new DBS is only 510HP. these days 550-600 should be an avg HP rating for a high-end sports car, no? maybe i'm wrong."

    The DBS does 0 - 60 in 4.2 seconds, .1 quicker than the Ferrari F430.

    "doesn't the 0-60 feel like more than 5 seconds?"

    Yes, the spec on the car is 4.9 and times reported in road tests range from 4.5 to 5. You have to abuse the car to get the times down, something that you probably would not want to do with a car that you own (as opposed to borrowed from the manufacturer for a road test).
  • "which problem, backfire ? "

    No, trouble starting, failure to rev., etc.
  • the 0-60 at 4.9 to 5.0 is probably on a stick. the paddles (at least on my car), wont take off properly. no matter how I take off, slow then floor it, floor it from the start. my paddle car wont even do 6 seconds. i have a computer tests for 0-60. i've had a ton of cars, and this is far from 5 seconds.

    at least with a stick, you have control of RPM and clutch release. but not with paddles.
  • Same as my original problem and more recent problem on the second Vantage.
    Anyway, after dealer reprogramming of ECU problem appears fixed. Staring is OK, even after being left unused for several days, and reving ok after cold start.
    ECU was given a different mapping program evidentally.
    Strange the program affects some Vantage's but not others.
  • Move over Google, Aston Martin is rated coolest brand.

    cool news:

    http://news.independent.co.uk/uk/this_britain/article2956438.ece
  • There seems to be quite a few debate on whether the 911 or the Vantage is superior. My two cents: the Porsche is a precision tool while the Vantage is a piece of art. One appeals to logic the other appeals to emotion. I bet if you take a Myers-Briggs personality test the result will have a direct correlation with which car you prefer.
    Since I'm posting on this site I guess my preference is quite obvious.
    On the topic of reliability, my friend has a 06 for a year and a half now and he does a lot of stop and go driving. He has no problem whatsoever so far. It seems it is purely by chance whether you get a good one or a lemon. I hope there is only a small number of lemons spoiling the party.
    :shades:
  • Well, this thread was never started to compare the AM Vantage with the Porsche 911. However, as there has been some Porsche fanatics or 'wanabees' who think the 911 is the best thing since sliced bread, upon recently checking at the Florida Attorney General's web site for 'Lemon' Porsches, it would appear that their records indicate that there have been dozens of Porsche lemons this year alone. Now, those records are just for the state of Florida and when you take into account all the other 49 states, there sure are a hell of a lot of Porsches that become lemons.

    Now, those Porsche purists will argue that more Porsches are sold than Aston Martins, that is certainly true in the USA. However, it doesn't take a genius to do the math and figure out that the ratios sold still conclude that more Porsches become lemons than Aston Martins in direct relation to the amount of these vehicles sold.

    Both cars perform well and look nice. However, nobody can say that an Aston Martin is more unreliable than a Porsche because the statistics do not back up such a statement.

    I think, at the end of the day, go ask 100 people off the street if they would prefer to be given a 911 or a Vantage, more than 90% would go for the Vantage.
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