Dashboard, Buick Verano
Chevrolet Cruze RS
Interior view, Chevy Cruze RS
2012 Chevrolet Sonic interior
Hyundai Veloster interior
2012 Hyundai Veloster
Personal memories extend back to visiting new car showrooms in the fall, not to buy, but just look at the new cars on display. Every model of a given company such as Chevrolet or Ford was introduced on the same day. As example, the local Chevrolet dealer would cover its showroom windows for a few days beforehand, and then the dealership would take down the window covers and have an open house. People jammed the showroom to see what was new. The cars actually had some notable differences such as fins or no fins, stylized tail lights, or something visible to differentiate each model. Once you knew the differences, the year and model could be determined hundreds of feet away.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but most cars today are a variation on a bubble shape. Aerodynamics plays a big role in the shape of a vehicle today in order to get the best coefficient of drag (save gas). The only discernable difference is usually the shape of the grill. Once the grill shape is set, such as the BMW two-piece or the Jeep multi-bar grills, it rarely changes. Car body designs are so similar today that you often have to get up close and friendly to the back bumper and actually read the make and model on the trunk lid. To generate a more continuous amount of excitement, new car models are introduced every few months during the year. By early summer many of next year’s models have already been introduced.
There is something different in almost every model and that is the locking system. For some reason, car manufacturers are not standing still when it comes to security issues. They seem to delight in changing something about the key, lock or transponder system on a semi-yearly cycle. One key and lock system is not enough. Models such as Ford, GM and Hyundai now use two, three or more code series each year depending on the car model.
Several existing models will receive upgrading for 2012. These models include the Honda Civic, Hyundai Accent, Hyundai Azera, Nissan Versa and Jeep Grand Cherokee
Five models with new credentials include the Buick Verano, Hyundai Veloster, Fiat 500, Chevrolet Sonic and the Chevrolet Cruze.
The Buick Verano will be using the new GM sidewinder code series Z0001-Z6000. However, only the driver’s door lock will include a lock cylinder to be used in emergency situations if power fails. Strattec emergency key blank 5915037 fits into a lock on the driver’s door. Button Remotes are normally used for unlocking while the ignition has a proximity system with push button starting.
The Hyundai Veloster will use a sidewinder key system with key codes of T1001-T3500. This is a new sidewinder series used for both the 2012 Veloster and the 2012 Hyundai Accent. Tumblers in both the ignition and door locks are in positions 1-8. Ilco has a new key blank HY18-P for use on the 2012 Accent and Veloster models.
The Fiat 500 is using a remote keyless entry system plus a transponder-based sidewinder ignition system The code series is DE0001-DE11210. Only known blanks at this time are the Ilco SIP22EHP and the Bianchi FT22UTK60. This is an internal sidewinder 8-cut key system.
The Chevrolet Cruze actually appeared in mid-2011. It also uses the new GM sidewinder key system with the code series of Z0001-Z6000. Remote buttons are used to normally unlock the door lock while the flip-out internal sidewinder key portion operates the transponder-based ignition lock cylinder.
2012 Chevrolet Sonic models continue the tradition of using the new Z0001-Z6000 sidewinder code system. Doors can be unlocked by remote while the transponder-based ignition cylinder is operated by the flip-out transponder key blade located in the remote keyhead.
It appears that almost all new cars from now on will be using electronic security. While this will continue to require added business investments for keys, remotes and programming tools, it also promises to add higher-cost items for sales to customers. Cost is less of an object when a duplicate transponder key is required or when all car keys are lost. Higher cost electronic keys first appeared on the 1986 Corvette. That was 25 years ago and by now most of the public understands the value and cost of the vehicle keys they are using.