Cars and keys go together like Oreos and milk. It would seem near impossible to have a car without them – even with push button start, there is still a fob. However, that might be changing as Volvo will be the first automaker to offer a completely keyless car next year.
And perhaps it seems only appropriate the replacement comes as a smartphone app, doing everything from unlocking the doors and trunk to starting the engine.
“Mobility needs are evolving and so are our customer’s expectations to access cars in an uncomplicated way,” said Henrik Green, Vice President of Product Strategy & Vehicle Line Management at Volvo Cars.
According to Green, Volvo owners can even send their digital key to others via the app.
“Innovative digital key technology has the potential to completely change how a Volvo can be accessed and shared. Instead of sitting idle in a parking lot the entire day, cars could be used more often and efficiently by whoever the owner wishes,” he said.
Now if you spend more time looking for your keys than driving your car, this might be a relief. Unless, you lose your phone too, or it gets stolen, or you drop it in the toilet. However, Volvo remains optimistic and will test the technology this spring through Sunfleet, the automaker’s car sharing service at the Gothenburg airport.
Traditional keys will still be offered for those who want to spend their Monday mornings digging through the couch cushions.
*Carl Anthony is Managing Editor of Automoblog and resides in Detroit, Michigan.