As vehicles need more security and consumers demand more convenience, more and more automakers are adding push button start to their vehicles.

As time changes, vehicles need more security and consumers demand more convenience. To accommodate, more and more automakers are adding push button starts to their vehicles.

Consider both the pros and cons before deciding if one is right for you.

How Push Button Start Works

The keyless ignition system allows you to keep the key fob in your pocket when you unlock and start the vehicle. When you leave the vehicle, it shuts off and locks itself. Antennas in the vehicle’s body sense when you have the key fob on your person, so it will only run when you have the right fob. The keyless feature also offers a standard keyed backup system.


The pros of a keyless system include security and convenience. It’s much harder to steal the vehicle since a potential thief would need your key fob. It’s also more convenient since you only need to keep the key fob in your pocket. This means no fumbling for keys or searching the depths of your pockets or purse for them.

Many of the systems also use rolling codes. The key fob sends a code and the vehicle’s computer searches for the code. Only once the code is found will the vehicle start. Some systems also use computer-encrypted microchips. These features allow for even more layers of safety.


The keyless systems do have cons. Anyone who has driven a vehicle for some time knows that components eventually break or wear out over time. When this happens, you’ll have to use the manual key to start the vehicle until you get the system repaired.

Another disadvantage is that the key fob could easily be forgotten. Furthermore, if the vehicle has a quiet engine, it’s easy to get out and assume the vehicle will shut off by itself. Only it doesn’t if the key is still in the vehicle. If this happens in an enclosed and attached garage, there is a risk of carbon monoxide getting into the house, which could create a deadly situation. To stay safe, be mindful when considering where your key fob is.

Choose a Vehicle

The push button start system is good if you prefer added security and the convenience of a keyless system, so long as you understand the risks, ensure you have the key on your person when you leave, and know how to use the manual system should there be any malfunction. Push button start is available in many vehicles, including Acura, Kia, Ford, Nissan, Jeep, Mitsubishi, Hyundai, Volkswagen, Toyota, and more.

While push button start systems can be useful, they do have both pros and cons to consider when making your next vehicle purchase.

Traci Benoit

About the AuthorTraci Benoit

I'm an automotive copywriter with more than 10 years of professional writing experience. I've written automotive content, articles, how-tos, magazine articles, sales copy and more. I have more than 15 years of professional hands-on experience in the automotive industry.