1 vote

WaPo: When the Only Thing Standing between You & AK47 is an 'Auto-DoorUnLock' on Your Armored SUV

I don't know what school of executive protection the driver was taught in, but one thing you NEVER do is STOP, especially when you're in an armored vehicle.

An armored SUV is not a tank, or a target that's designed to get you to survive being stuck and shot at. It's designed to ASSIST in you getting the heck out of a dangerzone. NOT put your armored SUV in "Park," in a known stretch of highway populated by Drug Cartels awaiting to ambush a known US intel asset.

Though, is it possible that a snitch could've gaven the cartels a rolling digital frequency key to the car's wireless remote door unlock system? Not out of the realm of possibility, but if the WaPo report is proven true, suppose it really could've been a simple "consumer-friendly" auto-door unlock feature that could be the sole culprit.

It's hard to believe that any armoring company wouldn't get rid of that feature in their clients' vehicles.

Makes one ponder, what good is even a 20 ton nuke proof vault door, if the door latch opens, during a blast?


Armored SUV could not protect U.S. agents in Mexico

By Nick Miroff and William Booth, Published: February 15

MEXICO CITY — When U.S. special agent Jaime Zapata was shot dead one year ago on a notorious stretch of highway in central Mexico, he was driving a $160,000 armored Chevy Suburban, built to exacting government standards, designed to defeat high-velocity gunfire, fragmentation grenades and land mines.

But the vehicle had a basic, fatal flaw.

Forced off the road in a well-coordinated ambush, surrounded by drug cartel gunmen brandishing AK-47s, Zapata and his partner, Victor Avila, rolled to a stop. Zapata put the vehicle in park.

The door locks popped open.

That terrifying sound — a quiet click — set into motion events that remain under investigation. When Zapata needed it most, the Suburban’s elaborate armoring was rendered worthless by a consumer-friendly automatic setting useful for family vacations and hurried commuters but not for U.S. agents driving through a red zone in Mexico...

Trending on the Web

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Manual transmissions

This is why manual transmissions should not be removed from vehicles and more utilized again imo. ie. Germans are great drivers from what I have seen with their manuals.

I find driving a manual makes people a better driver. ie. people cannot talk on the phone, play with the computer, drink coffee, eat a burger, etc while driving.

Just put the car in gear and turn the car off.

p.s. 160k vehicles ...that is a huge amount of money for one vehicle ..wtf?

that is worth more than the average home, not to mention fuel and maintenance?

No wonder GM is still afloat, you can get a great tractor for 160k.


well this is telling:

The Suburban driven by Zapata was outfitted by Arlington-based BAE Systems, a U.S. subsidiary of the British defense contractor, maker of tanks, submarines and jet fighters.

Disabling the unlocking mechanism on a Suburban is a relatively simple process, armoring specialists say. The setting can be adjusted on the vehicle computer by the driver or permanently altered in favor of a manual system.

U.S. officials say all of the vehicles in Mexico were reprogrammed to address the flaw after Zapata’s death. But armoring contractors point out that if the computer on the Suburban is reset — by a power failure or a battery replacement — it will revert to the default setting, leaving the vehicle vulnerable again.

Predictions in due Time...

"Let it not be said that no one cared, that no one objected once it's realized that our liberties and wealth are in jeopardy." - Dr. Ronald Ernest Paul