Aston Martin Could Leave US Without Federal Crash Exemption Approval

Cameron Aubernon
by Cameron Aubernon

Should you desire an Aston Martin in the near future, you may need to make your purchase sooner than later if the automaker fails to live up to the federal government’s newest expectations.

Bloomberg reports Aston Martin stores will likely suffer financial hardships should the DB9 and Vantage are no longer made for sale in the United States due to both vehicles’ failure to comply with new regulations regarding side-impact crashes. This would result in every dealership closing their doors barring an exemption for both vehicles, as explained by U.S. dealer advisory panel chairman James Walker in his petition to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration:

The financial viability of Aston Martin dealers is very much in question. If dealers make the decision to shutter the franchise, a very likely outcome, the impact on employment is significant.

Aston Martin sent exemption requests last year for the DB9 through August of 2016, and the Vantage the following August. Next-gen models of both vehicles have been delayed due to financial issues.

Cameron Aubernon
Cameron Aubernon

Seattle-based writer, blogger, and photographer for many a publication. Born in Louisville. Raised in Kansas. Where I lay my head is home.

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  • Dwford Dwford on Aug 18, 2014

    These cars comply with current regulations, so they are hardly frail flowers in the crash tests. An exemption for 2 years on such low volume cars doesn't seem unreasonable.

    • Seth1065 Seth1065 on Aug 18, 2014

      Well I do not know if they are on a waiver now so not sure if they are up to snuff. IF AM wants the waiver , they should have to pick up any ins claims from being in a side impact accident. And the buyers should have to sign a waiver. What happens when their two year waiver runs out, do they get to apply for a new one or is this we are two years away from reaching the US standards.??? I have no idea who has the better safety standards, does AM pass the European standard or do they request a waiver for that as well?

  • Dr. Kenneth Noisewater Dr. Kenneth Noisewater on Aug 18, 2014

    How long have these standards been mooted, and how long has it been since these vehicles have been refreshed? Seems to me that updating standards, short of some critical urgent safety issue, should be timed such that engineers have a reasonable amount of time to adapt to them. I have a suspicion that A-M has let their cars get a bit long in the tooth, and they really should be doing an update anyway.

    • See 3 previous
    • Pch101 Pch101 on Aug 20, 2014

      @Eyeflyistheeye It's a bizarre manifestation of anti-Americanism, a vision that holds the US in contempt for being a deviant outlier that lords over what is allegedly a global community of nations. That he can't get his facts straight and has questionable literacy skills is merely icing on the cake. Bogans aren't known for being bright.

  • Ja-gti Ja-gti on Aug 18, 2014

    Whew, so glad the Feds are forcing this company out of the US! Think of all the lives saved by keeping the thousands (or is it hundreds?) of these rickety vehicles off the road! Now I'm going for a ride on my motorcycle. With no helmet. 'Cause THAT'S perfectly legal here.

    • Iamwho2k Iamwho2k on Aug 18, 2014

      You could try explaining it to a bureaucrat but these people would only look at you blankly. Tim Cain would know for sure, but I imagine Aston sells at most a couple thousand cars here annually --of this number just how many get bashed in the side? If it happens twice a year I would be surprised.

  • CriticalMass CriticalMass on Aug 18, 2014

    I have often wondered to what degree the varying standards are, in the end, mainly trade barriers to protect the local boys at both ends. If my failing memory serves, I think economists call it "rent seeking" - "I already own this patch brother and it's gonna cost you to get in".