Explaining how this came about will help in understanding why late model car keys are so costly today.
How Late Model Car Keys Came About
In the past when one needed to replace a car key one went down to the local locksmith or dealer and they would cut a new key for you. This process was relatively inexpensive.
However this would change during the 1990s. Car theft rose around the world and thieves were able to steal cars in mere minutes. This major issue combined with technological developments led to the creation of the electronic immobiliser.
The transponder chipped key is the most common form of electronic immobiliser system and has been widely adopted.
What is a Transponder and How do they Work?
More complicated and involved products like microchips called transponders became the norm since 1995 as a result of this crime wave and technological achievements. Indeed some countries have legislated the adoption of transponder keys.
Specifically a transponder is a specialised key fitted with a microchip that needs to be programmed to suit every individual car.
Without the correct key matched to your specific car the on board computer will not allow the car to start.
These transponders disable the car electronic systems so even in the case of a break in the criminal would not be able to start the engine.
Why Late Model Car Keys are Costly…
There are a number of reasons as to why late model car keys are costly. These include:
- Due to the complicated and far more involved and technically advanced nature of transponder keys the days of a $10 replacement key cut are long gone. A simple piece of hardware became a complex electronic instrument that required programming.
- Few locksmiths have the capability to supply replacement keys when needed – the only other suppliers are the respective motor dealerships whose costs range from several hundred to a thousand plus dollars.
- With a new car you generally receive at least 2 or more transponder keys.
- With a second hand car you will likely only receive one key.
- According to the Locksmiths Guild of Australia the cost of supplying a replacement key in normal working hours ranges from $150-$400 providing you have a transponder to copy.
Coast Locksmiths Can Do What Others Cannot
In fact, they are the only business on the Northern Coast with the capacity and capability to make such products.
We also will provide you with free advice on transponder keys whether you call us or drop on in.
Other important information we think you should know includes:
♦ Producing aftermarket transponder keys, as Coast Locksmiths does, requires a range of costly equipment and software and substantial knowledge and training.
♦ Be aware that aftermarket transponder keys cannot be produced by anyone for Mercedes or BMW models – you have to go to the dealerships.
♦ If you only have one transponder key – DO NOT MISLAY IT. It is much cheaper for us to make a copy – a few hundred dollars depending on model and make. Making as copy “Saves inconvenience, time and money” More here
♦ To ask for an after market transponder key without a key to copy the potential cost is likely to at least double in the order of $500 to over a thousand dollars. Firstly we need to unlock the car (which may be difficult) and then collect the information to supply, reprogram a new transponder.
Summarising Why Late Model Car Keys are Costly
Late model car keys are now everywhere and more costly than their predecessors but offer far more safety security and ease of use as a trade off.
If you want to learn more about late model car keys and replacement costs feel free to contact us or call at the friendly team at Coast and Hinterland Mobile Locksmiths on 07 5474 4844.
The above is why late model car keys are costly is due to two main factors. In response to the social problem of car theft and a technological advancement in modern electronics that helped to solve the problem.