Cadillac XLR Forum Discussion, Dead battery and key won't open trunk in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; key turn's from the 12 o'clock position to 3 o'clock position
can not get trunk to release never checked from ...
Had the same problem. It helps to have two people open the trunk, but you can do it yourself. The owner's manual doesn't do a very good job of explaing how to open the trunk with the key other than, "Use the key to open the trunk."
After the key is rotated, immediately (we're talking milliseconds here) lift the trunk by pressing upward on the rear center brakelight or under the license plate area (by the decklid open switch) in one fluid motion. It takes a little effort, but it will raise. Don't grasp the rear decklid from the bottom; the auto cinch mechanism will release and then pull the decklid back, trapping your fingers.
For your battery: The XLR always draws power. If left parked for extended periods (>three weeks) you will likely experience a dead battery. Always keep it connected to a Battery Tender or Battery Minder when the car is stored, they not only keep it charged, but prevent the battery from sulphating, which ruins the plates. When batteries are discharged and remain idle, they begin to sulphate, which limits how much of a charge they can take and how long they can hold it. These are great products, and a must-have for every XLR owner who stores their car in the winter.
To gain access into the car, you can create a looped tool, and pass it through the window glass seal to hook around the door release lever. Failing that, you'll have to have your car towed to the dealer and let them open it.
This is a preemptive solution to this problem.... I ran a piece of 550 cord(any type of rope will work) from the emergency release inside the trunk through the rear seat opening. I just leave it there behind that opening in the trunk in case I loose power again.
While your work-around to this three year-old thread may work, it has the potential to do more harm than good.
The next time you're sober but bored out of your skull with nothing better to do, raise the rear deck lid and remove the black garnish cover over the rear deck lid latch mechanism. The emergency manual release cable terminates inside the plastic square box in the center and runs parallel to the normal manual release cable operated by the key when inserted into the bumper. Remove the cover of the box and marvel at how a cheap plastic mechanism could be green-lighted to safeguard someone's life in an emergency. If birth control products were so thoughtfully implemented, one should expect a lot of unintended Father's Day cards.
A few years ago, an XLR owner posted a truly harrowing story after using his key and breaking the rear deck lid latch. Luckily he received lots of creative input to his pleas for assistance. The situation was grim, and the impending solution appeared to be cutting into the deck lid, after inflatable air bladders used by a locksmith failed to pop the deck lid loose.
The problem ended up being resolved by going McGyver and inserting a hacksaw blade on a pole between the seats, (with the center rear console storage compartment removed) and cutting the "U"-shaped pull-down latch attached to the bottom of the rear deck lid. The latch assembly and the trim piece had to be replaced, but that was a financial drop in the bucket compared to the cost of a new deck lid.
The cable for the emergency release as designed is meant to be pulled parallel to the rear bumper by someone who's freaking out while locked inside the trunk. --And that's if the handle glows enough to be seen; I haven't locked myself in yet to confirm if it's really visible or not. Still, the handle may have some measure of usefulness as it looks to be large enough to bite down on and tug on with vigor after being kidnapped and tied up in the trunk. But again, I haven't had the opportunity to perform the Houdini Challenge myself with this test (yet.)
Your contingency fix of attaching a line to the emergency release handle and pulling it at a 90 degree angle from the cockpit could inadvertently cause damage to the fragile, cheaply-engineered latch and result in a failure that might ruin your whole day. I think the best insurance to prevent manual release problems is to ensure the cylinder lock for the manual cable release is secure within its mounting bracket, properly lubricated, and tested periodically. The rear deck lid is a PITA to lift alone, but it's worth knowing how to do it. In the dark. It sure beats testing the emergency pull release on a humid summer's night in the garage with a short-term memory-challenged friend who's been slamming back a few, three days out of rehab, while absorbed with his smartphone's new ear buds.