This isn't the first seat installation I've done on a car, nor will it be the last. The commonality with all first-time seat installations in a given car is that they never go right. Hardware is always missing. There will always be something that doesn't line up. There will be a hindrance. This installation is no different.
I'm installing a Recaro Profi SPG seat in my personal '07 V8 Vantage. I know that Aston Martin has used Recaro products. I know bolt-in solutions exist. I also know those products aren't sold to the public.
I reached out to my buddy Stuart at Velocity Automotive Performance because he has access to Aston Martin Racing products. I told him what I was doing and he made it happen. But, there was one hitch.
I had to acknowledge, in writing, that I know the risks involved with using racing hardware.
My goodness *gasp* and golly me. I told him I've lived a good life and I sent the acknowledgement. (As an aside, I hope these aren't famous last words!) The hardware arrived from Prodrive and Aston Martin Racing as ordered and then sat idle for months while I waited for Recaro to figure out this whole Pole Position debacle. I've daily driven a Pole Position and I knew I could handle it.
Several months later, that seat was still unavailable. So for the sake of trying new things - something I'm a bit notorious for - I ordered a Profi SPG instead. It's slightly narrower than the Pole Position and that was a small concern. But I've been fighting with my weight a bit (stress eating is an effective but debilitating way to deal with starting a new business like this one) so if anything it'd be a good incentive for me to get back in shape.
During the process of finding a Profi SPG, I ended up getting signed with another distributor. Surprise! Redpants now offers Recaro, Simpson Racing Products, and other brands!
The Same Ol' Story
The Recaro Profi SPG arrived and, giddy as can be and in dire need of some therapeutic wrench time, I went straight to work. The OEM seat was very easy to remove. Like most seat installations, the hardest part was unplugging the connectors for the various features built into the seats. One thing did surprise me, though. A while back, Aston Martin had a recall for the seat heaters. Turns out that recall came with a new ground wire that required some extra work to disconnect. It wasn't difficult, but its discovery as an unexpected annoyance.
With the seat out, I prepared the new hardware for installation. Up to this point it'd been too easy - even with that extra ground wire. I Knew something would go wrong. And it did. The sliders aren't long enough to reach the bolt holes in the floor on each side.
So the installation is delayed, but it does continue. I called up Stuart and he got right on it. Now it's another waiting game with us at the mercy of AMR and Prodrive.
Everything is a Lesson
I hate to think that any failed task is a waste of time. I was very fortunate early on to learn that learning is key to getting ahead. Although my car is without a driver's seat - I could put the OEM one back in, but... nah - I've gotten started on the DIY Guide write-up for this process. I've also started taking notes for everything needed to make this a truly bolt-in affair. I fully intend to sell these products on Redpants. And when I do, they'll have everything needed to bolt them in without issue. That's what I've been striving for with this website: Making things as painless as can be for owners and tinkerers, mechanics and hobbyists, and people like me that just can't leave well enough alone.
I'll follow up with this as soon as things get back on track!